We found this recipe in my grandma’s recipe file. I thought it was interesting because I’d never made a cake with vanilla wafer crumbs. For years my mom made a more difficult divinity icing for her coconut cakes, only to learn much later that my dad actually preferred the juicier, easier glaze that his mother made. I was really happy to find this recipe because I thought it had been lost forever and I had heard about this legendary cake all my life!
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease and flour a 9-inch tube cake pan.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and smooth. Add the eggs and vanilla, beating well. Mix in the vanilla wafer crumbs, coconut, and pecans. Pour into the pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a rack.
For the glaze, mix the sugar, cornstarch, salt, lemon zest and juice, water, and coconut in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring until thickened, about 15 minutes. Let cool slightly, then, using a toothpick, poke several holes in the top of the cake and drizzle the glaze over the cake.
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