Saturday, August 13, 2011

Island Bliss

       Why do vacations have to end? That is what I've been wondering for the past few days, since returning from tropical Hawaii. Having to leave the tranquil surroundings, of a tropical paradise proved to be more difficult than I could even imagine. I've been dreaming of the white sandy beaches that I left behind. I've even had to remind myself it is traffic I've been hearing outside my window, not crystal waves crashing against volcanic rocks.
       The only thing I miss more than the aqua blue water and blazing sun is, the food. I stayed at the Four Seasons Wailea Resort, on the island of Maui. Let me tell you, they know how to cook! The breakfast buffet was phenomenal! I'm not taking about your average pre-cooked mediocre food that is set under a heat lamp. All of the omlettes, waffles, pancakes, and sweet bread French toast were made to order. Not only was it fresh, but it was carefully hancrafted by specially trained chefs. A large array of sliced tropical fruits was arranged next to flaky French pastries. It was pure culinary heaven. I was also lucky enough to dine at Wolfgang Puck's world famous restaurant, Spago. The cucumber martinis were out of this world.
        Also while I was in Hawaii, I came across an unexpected food masterpiece. I was shopping at the Shops of Wailea, when I spotted a Tommy Bahamas' Restaurant. I know what you're thinking. Isn't that the clothing brand that designs those cliche Hawaiian shirts? Yes, they do have a clothing brand, but they also have some of the best desserts you will ever taste. I knew I had to try out this restaurant, because of its casual island vibe. I scanned the menu, and automatically stopped at the Pina Colada Cake. Boy, was it a knockout! I loved the creative complexity of this cake. Luscious layers of golden cocunut cake were delicately laced with white chocolate mousse, and toasted coconut. The cake was topped with a large swirl of whipped cream, which added a level of creaminess. It tasted like clouds of coconut were dancing around in my mouth. I was informed that this was their signature dessert. I can definitely see why!

Pina Colada Cake-Tommy Bahamas' 

  Since returning from Hawaii, I've been dreaming of that cake. Since I do not have a Tommy Bahamas location anywhere near me, I knew I had to improvise. I finally broke down, and decided to make some scones, which would satisfy this craving. I decided to make Toasted Coconut Scones. I topped them with a glaze, for touch of sweetness. 

Coconut scones -
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick), cold unsalted butter*
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut or sweetened shredded coconut,
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/4 cups unsweetened coconut milk, shaken well
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t coconut extract or an additional little splash of coconut milk

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