For best results, bake your cake the day before you want to make the lamingtons. Cut the cake into 21 squares.
To make the icing, sift your sugar and cocoa into a bowl. Mix in remaining ingredients except coconut and stir until smooth and shiny, using a little more water if necessary to reach the right consistency.
Use immediately, keeping the bowl over hot water. Add a little more boiling water if the icing begins to thicken as you work. Dip the squares of the cake into the icing. A carving fork or skewer is useful. Allow to drop for a minute and then roll in coconut. Leave on a wire rack to dry.
Set your oven temperature to 275 degrees fahrenheit. Place egg whites and a pinch of salt in a bowl and begin to beat until frothy, increasing the speed until they are stiff and dry. Gradually add sugar, while still beating, until the mixture is very stiff and stands in peaks. With a metal spoon, fold in the vinegar and corn starch.
Place a sheet of parchment paper on a sheet pan. Draw a 9-inch circle on the paper, using a 9-inch plate as a guide, then turn the paper over so the circle is on the reverse side. Pile the meringue into the middle of the circle on the parchment paper and smooth it within the circle, making a rough disk. Bake for 1 1/2 hours. Turn off the oven, keep the door closed, and allow the meringue to cool completely in the oven, about 1 hour. It will be crisp on the outside and soft on the inside.
Invert the meringue disk onto a plate and spread the top completely with sweetened whipped cream and cover with your glazed strawberries. Optional: around the holidays you can also sprinkle peppermint chocolate over the top, for an extra minty flavor.
In a large bowl, rinse and carefully drain 8 cups of mochigome rice multiple times until the water runs clear.
Cover with water and leave to soak for a minimum of 6 hours, to a day.
Drain the water out of the soaking rice, shaking to remove any excess water and let it sit to completely drain for 15 minutes. It's better to use a wooden sieve or metal colander vs. a plastic one.
Follow the instructions on your mochi maker and add two cups of water to the reserve area beneath the mochi maker bowl. Attach the bowl and stirring mechanism.
Add the thoroughly drained rice to the mochi maker bowl and even out the top so it's flat. Make sure the cover attachment is locked.
Set your machine on steam. It will automatically go to pound mode when it is ready and the grains of rice can be smashed with your finger.
Watch as the mochigome turns into a glutinous mass when it's pounding. When finished, turn out the big ball of pounded rice onto a table that has been sprinkled with mochiko (rice flour) to avoid sticking.
Very quickly, start forming the mochi into little patties by pinching off a small mound with your thumb and index finger.
You can add anko (sweet red bean paste) in the center for a special treat.
When you are ready to eat your mochi, preheat your toaster oven or oven to broil. Make a dipping sauce made up of 3/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup of soy sauce mixed together.
On a tray lined with tin foil and sprayed with cooking spray, line up your mochi in rows so that you have at least in inch in between them. As they puff up, this prevents them from sticking to each other.
Cook until the mochi puffs up and gets toasty brown on the top. Do not be surprised if the mochi patties double in size and start melding into each other. You can always pull them apart later. Enjoy!
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Add the butter and break it up with your fingers, mixing it in with the flour mixture.
Add in 2 tablespoons of cold water and begin mixing the dough all together. If it needs more water, add a tiny bit more in, until it forms a crust consistency. Bring the dough into a ball shape, cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, take the dough out and place it on a cutting board that is lightly floured. Begin to knead the dough gently, forming it into a rectangle, keeping the edges even. Try to make sure you still have some flecks of butter visible in the dough.
Fold the top third of the dough down to the center, then the bottom third up and over that. Roll the dough out again, turning it vertically so that it reaches three times its length. Fold it in thirds again, cover and put in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
While the dough is resting, you can make the custard filling! Dissolve 1/2 cup of sugar into the hot water, in a large mixing bowl. Allow this to cool to room temperature. Thoroughly whisk eggs and evaporated milk together in a separate bowl and then whisk in the sugar water and vanilla.
Strain your egg mixture through a mesh strainer in order to get your mixture to a smooth consistency without bubbles. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Roll out the dough and cut circles to fit your small aluminum tart tins. Press your dough into the tins to fill each one. Then fill them with the egg mixture, 3/4 of the way to the top. Place all of your tins onto a baking sheet and pop them in the oven!
Bake them for 15 minutes, reducing the temperature to 350 degrees and baking again for another 10-12 minutes, until the filling is just set. Let the tarts cool for a couple of minutes and enjoy them while they are warm!