Hawaiian Pineapple Coconut Crescent Braid – This delectable coconut pineapple dessert braid was inspired by my recent trip to the White Lily test kitchen. Our time spent in the test kitchen was interactive, which thrilled me to bits. Along with our partner we got to bake a recipe from the website using White Lily, Martha White and Smucker’s products. I was in heaven.
The recipe assigned to myself and Christin from Spicy Southern Kitchen was a Coconut Almond Biscuit Braid. Needless to say, it was a lot of fun working together and giggling with the other bloggers in the test kitchen. Stacey, from Southern Bite even showed us some of his best dance moves. At that point giggling turned to very loud laughter. He was such a good sport hanging with all of the ladies. While working on the coconut braid my creative juices started flowing and I wondered how the same concept might be adapted to make another type of dessert braid and this Hawaiian version was the result.
This version combines 2 of my favorite flavors, pineapple and coconut. I opted to use a crescent roll crust to simplify. It is SO good. I would be perfectly happy to serve this for brunch or as a sweet pastry with coffee or hot tea. It’s even tasty enough to be served at room temperature as a special dessert.I sometimes think when people see “braid” in the recipe title it immediately causes a mental block so I wanted to show you the step-by-step pictures to make recreating it a cinch. You’ll be a braid making expert in no time.
- 1  oz can crescent rolls
- Coconut Filling:
- 4 Tbsp butter
- 1½ cup sweetened flaked coconut
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp milk
- Cream Cheese Filling:
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1  oz crushed pineapple, drained
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 large egg beaten
- 1 tsp turbinado [raw] sugar
- ½ tsp almond extract
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- In a small saucepan melt the butter. Add the shredded coconut, sugar, honey and milk. Cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly then remove from the heat and mix in the almond extract. Set aside to cool.
- Tear a large piece of parchment and place it flat on the counter.
- Unroll the crescent rolls and press together the perforations. Shape into an 8 x 15-inch rectangle.
- Whip together the softened cream cheese, crushed pineapple, sugar, flour and vanilla.
- Spread down the center of the dough. Arrange the coconut mixture on top.
- Cut diagonal strips to within ¼ inch of the filling. Fold the strips over each other.
- Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.
- Bake for 25 minutes until golden. Rest for 10 minutes before cutting.