I just love this cake as it is so moist and cuts well, an important factor if serving it for a morning or afternoon tea, or taking to a picnic. You can pour the syrup over whilst in the tin but it might be difficult to remove: the finish will be better if the syrup is brushed or spooned over. Having just spent a few days in Hawaii with my son and his family, the lime-coconut-passionfruit combo really works for me as it evokes magical summer evenings by the beach there.
Preheat the oven to 170degC.
Grease a 25cm round cake tin and line the base with non-stick baking paper. Cream together the butter, sugar and finely grated zest of the lemons until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs one at a time. Fold through the coconut and flour.
Spoon into the prepared tin and bake for one hour. Remove cake from oven and turn out carefully onto a wire rack.
Meanwhile, make the syrup: place the sugar and water in a saucepan. Add the juice of both lemons. Bring to the boil, and leave to gently simmer for a few minutes.
Brush or spoon over the hot syrup. It seems like a lot of syrup but this cake will absorb it all.
When cool, dust with icing sugar and decorate with candied lime peel (optional).
Tip: Substitute 2-3 limes for the lemons and for a for a tropical touch, add the pulp of three passionfruit to the cooled syrup, stir to combine, then spoon over the cake.