Cole helped me with this recipe, he’s a great helper, but together we made one helluva mess. It was about a month ago, and I had heard about tres leche cake while walking around Puerto Vallarta. There’s a bakery there on the malecon that makes it, but we could never find it. So I decided in the name of science, I would have to recreate this decadent, over-the-top rich dessert and then eat it. For science. Oh the sacrifices I make.

The thing is, it’s super rich but with some whipped cream, fresh raspberries and shredded coconut, it’s also addictively good. It’s like cheesecake, you love it, it’s great, but you only make it once in a blue moon, because, well, then you’ll eat it. And you don’t even want to think about the calories, it must be like 5,000 per slice or something. So don’t think. Just make it, eat it slowly, and try to remember that this may be the only time you make tres leche cake, so in the name of all that is good in the world, you’re going to enjoy it.


For the cake:

Vegetable oil
6 3/4 ounces cake flour, plus extra for pan
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces sugar
5 whole eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the glaze:

1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup half-and-half

For the topping:

2 cups heavy cream
8 ounces sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup raspberries
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Adapted from this recipe.

The cake is easy (actually I’m convinced, although I haven’t tried it, that you could do this with almost any cake mix) you just mix the ingredients up, pre-heat the oven to 350 and flour your 9 inch round pan. Pour the batter into the pan.

Stick it in the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Then you make your glaze, which is truly horrifying. It’s these two bad boys:

Plus some of this:

Yup, that’s one can of evaporated milk, one can of sweetened condensed milk and one cup of half-and-half. Tres leches. Pour on your cake. What? Yes. I know. It’s a lot of liquid. Use a fork to poke holes in the cake if needed to get it to soak in. Then pop it in the fridge overnight.

Next up, make the whipped cream topping by whipping together the heavy cream (leche #4!), sugar and vanilla. Top the cake with the whip cream (put it in the freeze between steps if you’re not doing it right away) and sprinkle with raspberries and coconut. Voila:

It’s so lush.

This is without the glaze on the plate. But below you can see that you can also drizzle the left over glaze to make it an even more soft, sweet, rich and unreal dessert:


And then you die. It’s awesome, truly decadent and one more reason why it’s going to be really hard for us to leave Mexico.