On my Birthday there is nothing I love more than cake and champagne. Having my friends over to enjoy this with me is the perfect way to spend the day. Here is the recipe from my recent YouTube episode - enjoy!

For the cake

  • 2 cups / 250g / 4 ½ oz plain flour
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup / 225g / 8oz salted butter
  • 1½ cups / 300g / 4oz granulated sugar
  • ½ cup / 110g / 4oz light brown sugar
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup / 250ml whole buttermilk7
  • 7oz packaged sweetened flake coconut
  • 1½ cups / 118g pecans (toasted)

For the frosting

  • 2 packs (8oz) cream cheese
  • 1 cup / 225g / 8oz unsalted butter
  • 2lb powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 7oz sweetened flake coconut
  • ½ cup / 65 toasted pecans


  1. Cream together the butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, almond extract, and vanilla extract in a mixer until fully combined. About 3-4 minutes.
  2. Add the eggs one-by-one, beating after each addition. Once all of the eggs have been added, give the mixture a good whisk. 
  3. Add in the baking powder and baking soda. Then mix in a little of the flour and buttermilk, a bit at a time, whisking after each addition. Repeat this until  all of the flour and buttermilk are fully combined. 
  4. Stir in the coconut and pecans by hand, then divide this mixture between three cake tins. 
  5. Bake in the oven at 350f / 180c for 25-30 minutes until a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean. 

For the frosting

  1. In a mixer beat together the cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy.
  2. Add in the vanilla extract and the almond extract, whisk to combine.
  3. A tablespoon at a time, add in the powdered sugar, mixing after each addition.
  4. Once the cake has fully cooled, spread the frosting between the layers, and then on the top and sides of the cake so it is fully coated in the frosting.
  5. Use the remaining coconut to cover the top and sides of the cake - this can be very tricky! Just take your time and have patience.
  6. Sprinkle the remaining pecans on top of the cake.

    Recipe adapted from:

Comments on this post (2)

  • Jul 24, 2023

    I’ve made this once already for my family. They all loved it!
    I’ll be making these for family occasions for quite awhile! I noticed the original recipe calls for toasted coconut flakes. I find in-toasted makes things so moist I don’t even need to try toasted.

    — Stace

  • May 19, 2022

    I found Nicolas’ YouTube when I searched for “classic design.” After tiring of the constant bombardment of boring, minimal, grey interiors, mid-century modern (which always seems tacky to me being a child of the 70’s/80’s where those furnishings will always just look tired and dated, because it was back then!) and enough macrame and fiddle leaf fig plants to last a lifetime, I had had enough. My design aesthetic is to make my house look like the set of Downton Abbey or the PBS series “The Paradise.” Then I found Nicolas. Finally! Beautiful classic interiors with soothing warm colors. The love of tea and afternoon tea, YES! And particularly this video. I found my person. My soul brother. I cannot have a birthday without cake and champagne. My absolute favorite. I’ve continued to enjoy all of the videos from the past and now going forward. By the way, Nicolas’ birthday is just 5 days before mine and a fellow Aquarius. (Of course. <3)
    Nicolas, if you are reading this, thank you for your wonderful content. I have really enjoyed your videos. And your calm and soothing voice is just a cherry on top. Also thank you for not painting that beautiful secretary desk/cabinet. I nearly had a heart attack when you mentioned thinking about it and was greatly relieved when you decided not to. It looks like burl wood, (I can’t tell on my tiny television! I don’t like giant tv’s either!) and it would be such a shame to paint over it.

    — Karen B

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