Dominican Cornmeal and Coconut Cake

Arepa is a Dominican cornmeal and coconut cake that rich and comforting that is sometimes made sweet, so it that can be served for breakfast, as a snack or even dessert with coffee or hot chocolate.

INGREDIENTS:

4 cups arepa corn flour

4 cups water

3 1/2 cups of milk (whole, reduced fat or skim)

2 12-oz cans evaporated milk

3 or 4 cinnamon sticks

1/2 cup raisins

1 1/2 cups light brown sugar

2 ½ ups coconut Milk

1 tbsp anise seeds

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp salt

4 tbsp butter or margarine

DIRECTIONS:

Add the arepa flour to a large bowl with the water. Stir to eliminate clumps. The flour will swell up, absorbing most of the water (this is what you want). Set aside.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, heat the milk over a medium flame. Add the evaporated milk, cinnamon sticks, raisins and sugar. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then add the coconut cream (don't substitute coconut milk, they are not the same thing), the vanilla extract, salt and anise seeds.

Stirring continuously, let the mixture come just to a boil.

Add the damp arepa flour. Mix well, breaking up the clumps, and let cook on the stove. Stir it every minute or two to stop it sticking.

Use half of the softened butter to grease a large baking pan.

When your arepa becomes a thick porridge like mixture, you can put it in the baking dish. Then take the remaining 2 tbsp of butter (may substitute with margarine) and cut it into thin slices (it’s easier to this with a stick of butter), then spread over the arepa,

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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