In a large mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks with ¾ cup of sugar on high until light yellow in color. Mix in the vanilla and coconut milk. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and mix these gently until combined.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites on high until you have soft peaks. Add ¼ cup sugar and beat on high until stiff peaks form. Gently fold egg whites into the batter.
Pour the batter into prepared pan and spread out until batter looks even.
While cake is still warm, pierce it all over with a fork making sure you pierce the edges. This will allow the tres leches to drain into the cake when you pour it over.
Whip together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, coconut milk, vanilla, and splash of rum, if using. This will make about 3 cups.
Slowly pour about 2½ cups of the tres leches over the entire cake. Make sure to get around the edges. Do not worry about the puddling of the milk mixture, the sponge cake will absorb it in about 30 minutes. Save the rest of the milk mixture in the refrigerator for later. Cover the cake with plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator, and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Put the cold whipping cream and sugar in a large cold mixing bowl and mix on high until fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Reserve in covered container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
For each serving, ladle a tablespoon of the leftover milk mixture onto a serving plate. Place a piece of cake on the milk mixture, top with a dollop of whipped cream, sprinkle with toasted coconut, and top with pineapple chunks or your favorite fruit. Garnish with mint spring.
© 2013 All rights reserved. Published by Hippocrene Books.