Teen's coconut pound cake wins grand champion at Ag Expo

August 09, 2011|By MARIE GILBERT |
  • Tatian Alanis Smith, 14, of Williamsport won grand champion in the cake division of Washington County Ag Expo & Fair's annual baking competition with her coconut pound cake recipe.
By Kevin G. Gilbert/Staff Photographer


When it comes to creating blue ribbon recipes, Tatian Alanis Smith takes the cake.

The 14 year-old's coconut pound cake recently was named grand champion in the cake division of Washington County Ag Expo & Fair's annual baking competition.

The dessert, Tatian said, "wasn't a family recipe but an original that had never been made before."

The Williamsport teen said she also made cookies and decorated cupcakes for this year's contest and was hoping her entries would be good enough for a ribbon. But she never expected grand champion.

"I was really surprised," she said.

Tatian said she's been baking since she was about 9 years old and comes by her talents naturally.

"I learned to bake with my mother and grandmother," she said "In fact, all the women in our family bake."

Tatian has been entering Ag Expo's baking competition for the past five years and often walks away with a ribbon.

And, although this year's grand champion prize was special, it's not the first time she has won the top award. Last year, her peanut butter cookies were named grand champion.

Tatian is a 4-H member of the Washington County Dairy Club and shows Brown Swiss dairy cattle. She's also a member of the Junior Fair Board. 

She will be a ninth-grader this fall at Williamsport High School and said she enjoys school.

"I've been an honor roll student for the last four years," she said.

When she's not busy baking, Tatian plays volleyball and softball, loves to travel, has been on four Caribbean cruises with her family and enjoys the beach.

She also doesn't mind sharing her recipes, she said.

Coconut pound cake

3/4 cup shortening

2 sticks butter, softened

3 cups sugar

5 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup milk

2 teaspoons coconut extract

1/2 bag frozen fresh, shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Grease and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.

Use a mixer to cream shortening, butter and sugar together. Add eggs one at a time.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt and baking powder. Add, alternating with milk, to shortening mixture and ending with flour. Add coconut extract and stir in coconut. Pour into pan and bake for 1 hour and 25 minutes or until cake is done.

Cool for 10 minutes, then invert onto cake plate.

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