I’ve long been a fan of shaggy white coconut layer cakes, filled and frosted with ultra-sweet meringue. But it was only recently that I encountered its more flamboyant cousin, the ambrosia cake.
It’s got the white cake layers, billowing frosting and shredded coconut of the classic, crossed with the juicy citrus of ambrosia, the salad or dessert of oranges or mandarins, pineapple, strawberries and coconut embedded in whipped topping or sour cream. Sometimes a few marshmallows are thrown in for good measure.
I didn’t grow up eating ambrosia. I didn’t even meet it in the flesh until college, when the cafeteria served it at the salad bar.