Tag Archives: coconut

coconut ohmygosh bars

28 Oct

This isn’t really a “new” recipe. In fact, it’s not much of a recipe rather than a last-minute bake-off to use my shredded coconut before it expires – because letting anything expire in your pantry is just so sad. But my oh my, this accidental treat is yummy yummy yummy in my tummy (and a problem for my hips!). These bars are SO sweet and decadent, yet there is something about the combination of caramel and coconut and hazelnuts that is just to die for. The caramel brittle at the bottom just has the right combination of salty crunch and sweet caramel, and the coconut layer is chewy and delicious, and of course you then come aross the bittersweet chocolate layer on top with the added crunch of the toasted nuts. Just thinking about it makes me want to cry because I have no more bars left. You can seriously substitute everything in this recipe and just use my recipe as a guideline, and create your own ohmygosh bars with whatever you have lying around in your pantry. Seriously, all you need is a yummy caramel base, and top it with whatever your heart desires. I simply used my pecan praline caramel cracker recipe and then modified it slightly. Trust me, make double the recipe, keep half for yourself and give the other half away. That way, you’ll seem like the most amazing and generous friend in the world – while eating your own stash secretly in the privacy of your own home. You can have your ohmygosh bars and eat them too ;) Seriously, I have found a new religion in these bars.

stacks and stacks of "ohmygosh, these are amazing" bars

stacks and stacks of "ohmygosh, these are amazing" bars

look at all that gooey chewy coconut filling on top of that crunchy caramel brittle, smothered in chocolate!

look at all that gooey chewy coconut filling on top of that crunchy caramel brittle, smothered in chocolate!

who am I kidding - no one eats these with a fork

who am I kidding - no one eats these with a fork

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 40 salted soda crackers
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup (1/2 can) condensed milk
  • 1 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts

How-to:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 11-by-17-inch baking sheet completely with foil, and then line the base of the foil with parchment paper, cut to fit.
  2. Line the bottom of the baking sheet with crackers, covering all parts.
  3. In a medium heavy-duty saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar together, and stir it over medium heat until it begins to boil. Once it has begun boiling, let it bubble for three more minutes, stirring it well. It will thicken a bit as it cooks. Remove from the heat and add the salt and vanilla, and then quickly pour it over the matzo or crackers. You’ll want to spread it quickly, as it will begin to set as soon as it is poured.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the coconut and the condensed milk. You can use more of the condensed milk if you find the coconut mix to be too dry, but I found that 1/2 cup was just enough to bind the coconut together and provide the right amount of sweetness.
  5. Spread the coconut mixture evenly over your caramel-covered crackers.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, making sure that the corners of the caramel or the coconut layer doesn’t get too dark. You want it to be golden.
  7. Remove from the oven, and sprinkle your chocolate chips evenly over the coconut. Return to the oven just for 2 minutes, to soften the chocolate.
  8. Using an off-set spatula, spread the chocolate into an even layer. Sprinkle the toasted hazelnuts over top, and feel free to drizzle even more chocolate on top. Since I also had sliced almonds on hand, I sprinkled those on top too. The more, the merrier =)
  9. Enjoy!

xo dessertchick

crazy chocolate coconut banana cake

3 Jun

This shit is bananas, b-a-n-a-n-a-s.

Well, now that I got that clicheed pop culture reference out of the way, let me tell you about this gem of a cake. The emphasis is on the word cake, because this ain’t your regular dry, with only a hint of banana, let’s-eat-it-with-butter banana loaf. Every single slice, bite and morsel of this cake is jam-packed with honest-to-goodness banana, chewy coconut and semi-sweet chocolate pieces. This is one of those times where the bananas truly shine through, and don’t take a backseat to whatever flour and egg mixture you add them to. This cake is heavy and moist, and fills you right up – you could basically have this and a cup of coffee in the morning, and you’d never think about those terrible heavy clumps of dough called muffins again.

Let me tell you this: bananas are not my favourite fruit. They don’t even make it on my top 10 favourite fruits, yet I got out of my way to buy bananas just to let them turn brown and splotchy on my counter. I buy bananas, knowing that I won’t ever eat them as is, just so I have an excuse to make this banana cake.

I’ve been making this recipe for a while now, and although I look towards Anna Olsen’s White Chocolate Banana Loaf recipe as a guideline, you’ll see that even the word guideline is very loosely applied here. My recipe is pretty much entirely different every time I make it, depending on my mood and what state my cupboards are in. So, take a look at my recipe, take a look into your pantry, and then just start mashing up your bananas and throwing whatever you heart desires into your mixing bowl. Just make sure there’s chocolate involved ;)

Because I use a lot of bananas, the amount of sugar you have to add in is virtually nonexistent considering the amount of dense, heavy deliciousness you’ll end up. I also used whole wheat flour instead of white flour, so you could tell yourself that this is actually “healthy” and go about your day happy and fulfilled. Enjoy!

pretty plain looking, with just a light dusting of powdered sugar

pretty plain looking, with just a light dusting of powdered sugar

but on closer inspection....

but on closer inspection....

...it's not that plain anymore!

...it's not that plain anymore!

look at the gooey chocolate chips and the delicious coconut flakes!

look at the gooey chocolate chips and the delicious coconut flakes!

(healthy) comfort food at its finest!

(healthy) comfort food at its finest!

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp all spice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5-6 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup (or more) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup icing sugar

How-to:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a bundt cake pan.
  2. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract.
  3. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, all-spice and salt. Add to creamed mixture alternately with banana.
  4. Fold in coconut and chocolate chips.
  5. Spoon batter into pan and spread evenly.
  6. Bake for 50 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a plate.
  8. Dust with icing sugar right before serving.
  9. Munch away without guilt =)

xo dessertchick

coconut butter thin yumminess

30 Apr

I still had almond meal left over from the almond logs I made, so I figured I might as well make these delicious coconut butter thins from Tuesdays with Dorie. I came upon this adaptation of the original recipe on The Brown Eyed Baker, and since adaptation (and running out of ingredients) is the mother of invention, I thought I’d give these a go with a few tweaks.

Since my blog is called Chocolate Fool, it is hard to make something that doesn’t involve chocolate – and why would I want to? =) I didn’t have enough macadamia nuts and couldn’t run to the store at 1am, so I used half chopped macadamia nuts and half chopped almonds. I also only had a really sad looking, shrivelled lime, so I used the zest of two lemons. And since I still had some almond meal, I substituted 1/2 of flour for almond meal. These beauties came out wonderfully – they had the lacy edges that Dorie spoke of, and the combination of coconut/almonds/macadamia nuts and lemon was amazing.

The dipping in chocolate was really not necessary, but it does give these cookies an extra push – and the sprinkle of coconut flakes on top is just oh so pretty!

what rows of beauties!

what rows of beauties!

for those who don't like too much chocolate...

for those who don't like too much chocolate...

....but for me, a cookie without chocolate, is a sad cookie.

....but for me, a cookie without chocolate, is a sad cookie.

lemony & nutty - what a perfect combination.

lemony & nutty - what a perfect combination.

and yet, the chocolate, lemon and almonds combination certainly kicks ass

and yet, the chocolate, lemon and almonds combination certainly kicks ass

Recipe

(adapted from Brown Eyed Baker, who adapted it from Tuesdays with Dorie)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of ground coriander
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • Grated zest of 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut + extra for sprinkling
  • 1/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/2 cup semit sweet chocolate

How-to:

  1. Whisk together the flour, cornstarch, salt and coriander.
  2. If you want to get a little more flavor out of the lemon zest, put the sugar and zest in the
    mixer bowl and, using your fingertips or spoon, work the zest into the sugar until the sugar is
    moist and the mixture fragrant.
  3. Working with a stand mixer or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar and zest on medium speed for about 3 minutes, or until smooth.
  4. Beat in the vanilla extract. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture, mixing only until the dry ingredients disappear.
  5. Add the coconut and nuts and pulse to incorporate them.
  6. There will probably be some dry ingredients in the bottom of the bowl – don’t work them in with the mixer, just reach into the bowl and knead them in.
  7. Transfer the soft, sticky dough to a gallon-size zipper-lock bag. Put the bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into a 9×10 1/2-inch rectangle that’s ¼inch thick. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so it doesn’t cause creases. When you get the right size and thickness, seal the bag,
    pressing out as much air as possible, and refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours or for up to 2 days.
  8. Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  9. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.
  10. Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open. Turn the dough out onto the board
    (discard the bag), and, using a ruler as a guide and a sharp knife, cut it into 32 squares,
    each roughly 1 ½ inches on a side.
  11. Transfer the squares to the baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between them.
  12. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at
    the midway point.
  13. The shortbreads will be very pale – they shouldn’t take on much color. Transfer the cookies to a rack and cool to room temperature.
  14. Melt the chocolate in the microwave at 30 second intervals until smooth. Dip half of the cookies in the chocolate, and lay on wax paper to cool. Sprinkle with coconut flakes before the chocolate sets.
  15. Wow your friend and family – but make sure to keep some for yourself!

xo dessertchick

easy-peasy macaroon s’mores bars

12 Apr

Shannon and Toby are my heroes, so I wanted to thank them by baking something decadent and delicious. And since I still had Pillsbury Crescents left (they were on sale for a ridiculously good price!), and didn’t feel like eating plain croissants, I googled for a couple of possible recipes. I came across this one, and the only modification I made was adding marshmallows. This took them from simple macaroon bars to macaroon s’mores bars, because everything is tastier with marshmallows! Feast your eyes on this creation. But beware, it is very very sweet and rich, so cutting these into small bars is key! This was put together in under 30 minutes, but the cooling time requires another hour or so =)

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the silpad keeps the bars from sticking to your pan!

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these bars are dangerous, so please share!

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crescent crust, coconut filling, roasted marshmallows, melted chocolate and chopped almonds

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a tower of decadence

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another picture, just because =)

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ooey gooey yumm!

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can Pillsbury crescents
  • 2 cups shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened
  • 1 can (14oz) condensed milk
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 bag (6oz) semi sweet chocolate
  • 2 cups marshmallows (mini ones, or cut the jumbo ones in half)
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds
  • 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (optional)

How-to:

  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 13×9-inch pan with cooking spray or line with wax paper/silpad.
  2. Unroll dough; separate into 2 rectangles. Place lengthwise in pan. Press in bottom and 1/2 inch up sides to form crust, pressing edges and perforations to seal. Press in bottom and 1/2 inch up sides to form crust.
  3. Sprinkle coconut evenly over crust. In medium bowl, mix condensed milk and almond extract; drizzle over coconut.
  4. Bake 16 to 20 minutes or until edges are golden brown and filling is set.
  5. Pull pan out, and sprinkle marshmallows. Return to oven until marshmallows are melted. Swirl fork around to evenly distributed melted marshmallows. Let cool in pan.
  6. In 1-quart saucepan, melt chocolate chips over low heat, stirring frequently. Stir in peanut butter. Spread chocolate mixture over bars; sprinkle with almonds. Refrigerate until chocolate is set, about an hour.

xo dessertchick

macaroon or macaron?

5 Mar

In this case, macaroons won out for me tonight!

For those of you who don’t know the difference that the extra “o” makes: the macaroon is made with shredded coconut and is crunchy on the outside while nice and soft and chewy on the inside – meanwhile, the macarons are French specialty cookies made from ground almonds which sandwich chocolate ganache. In my case tonight, I didn’t have the ingredients or the time to make the macarons. Perhaps next time!

My oven had been on the fritz for what seemed like ages (read: 2 weeks) so I couldn’t wait until I could finally bake again. Also, school feels like I’m constantly running against a brick wall and I can’t stop, so baking these delicious bites of coconut heaven was a welcoming distraction.

This is my favourite macaroon recipe in the world, and I’ll probably make these more than chocolate chip cookies (shhh, don’t judge me!) or brownies (please don’t boycott me!) – unless people are requesting or demanding chocolate chip cookies or brownies (see! I do what I can to please). It’s very easy, and the only “time consuming” part is waiting for the mix to cool down in the fridge. Other than that, you can whip these up whenever you have a yen for them – which will be fairly frequently after you’ve tasted them once, trust me.

I initially got the recipe from Epicurious, but since I always make double than what their recipe calls for, I’ve made a few adjustments. I cut down on the sugar because I already use sweetened coconut. I’ve reduced the amount of egg whites called for because I use egg whites from a carton for convenience, and it seems to make the mixture more wet than necessary. I also like to toast the coconut before adding the sugar and the egg whites, because I find it brings out the depth and nuttiness from the coconut. Yum!

macaroon, oh macaroon, how lovely you look

macaroon, oh macaroon, how lovely you look

with chocolate....

with chocolate....

...or without chocolate?

...or without chocolate?

perhaps the best of both worlds! have your macaroon and eat it too!

perhaps the best of both worlds! have your macaroon and eat it too!

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups of sweetened shredded coconut (that’s exactly three of those 200g bags you grab from the store)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup egg whites
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 9 oz of semi-sweet chocolate chips for drizzling

How-to:

  1. Toast coconut in heavy large saucepan on medium heat until it starts to brown slightly. Add sugar and egg whites, and mix thoroughly. Continue cooking over medium heat until mixture appears somewhat pasty, stirring constantly, about 12 minutes. You don’t want the mixture to be too runny. But if it’s too dry, the macaroons will fall apart in the oven.
  2. Remove mixture from heat. Mix in the vanilla extract and almond extract. Spread out coconut mixture on large baking sheet. Refrigerate until cold, about 45 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 300F. Line another baking sheet with parchment. While the oven is still heating up, use a tablespoon or a melon baller and form the mixture into uniform balls.  Bake cookies until golden, about 30 minutes. Remove cookies to rack and cool.
  4. When the cookies are cooled, melt the chocolate chips and drizzle as you see fit.
  5. Lick the chocolate bowl clean and eat one, or two, or three, or more macaroons!

xo dessertchick

KnockOut knock-off girl scout cookie bars

24 Feb

Since my oven is still on the fritz, I decided to be as productive as ever today: hanging out with Opie & her Boy usually is one of my favourite things to do, but we don’t really get much done while lounging around. Yet, I managed to finagle them into baking cookies with mer. Correction: her Boy baked with me, while Opie was a true trooper and went on a journey to find us lots and lots of creamy caramel candies!

I found this recipe online at Baking Bites, and it made my mouth water. What could possibly top a shortbread-like crust, topped off with caramel and coconut goodness? This recipe was super easy, especially since it made bars instead of cookies, which eliminated the process of rolling and cutting out round cookies.

After some deliberation, the only change I made to the recipe was to add toasted sliced almonds because I absolutely looove toasted almonds.  Her Boy, however, decided it wasn’t caramel-y enough for him, so we added more on top – something that makes these bars very over-the-top and decadent , and should only be done for those who have a SERIOUS sweet tooth.

Mhhhmmmmm.

So without further ado, I present to our KnockOut knock-off girl scout cookie bars!

a tower of delight

a tower of delight

the cookie bar can barely contain itself with all that caramel

the cookie bar can barely contain itself with all that caramel

shortbread crust? check. coconut caramel mixture? check. toasted almonds? check. chocolate drizzle? definitely checked!

shortbread crust? check. coconut caramel mixture? check. toasted almonds? check. chocolate drizzle? definitely checked!

Recipe

Adapted from Baking Bites

Ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the topping:

  • 3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
  • 12-oz good-quality chewy caramels
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 10 oz. dark or semisweet chocolate

How-to:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan, or line with parchment paper
  2. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter, until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract.
  3. Working at a low speed, gradually beat in flour and salt until mixture is crumbly, like wet sand. The dough does not need to come together. Pour crumbly dough into prepapred pan and press into an even layer.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until base is set and edges are lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack before topping
  5. While the crust is baking, you can now toast the coconut. You can either do that in the oven, alongside with the crust, or you can dry toast it in a pan on the stove on medium high heat.  Just make sure you are continuously stirring it while it is toasting, since they burn quite easily! Once done, remove immediately from the heat and pour coconut into a bowl.
  6. Repeat the same toasting process with the sliced almonds, and put them into a smaller separate bowl.
  7. Next, unwrap the caramel candies. Place them into a microwave safe bowl, add the milk and the salt. Cook on high for 3 to 4 minutes, always making sure to stir and mix the melting caramel with the milk. This will make sure that it won’t burn and that it will be velvety smooth.
  8. Pour melted caramel into the bowl with the coconut and mix well.
  9. Now, pour the caramel coconut mixture onto the crust and spread it out well. It’s very sticky, even if you’re using a spatula. I find that using a sheet of wax or parchment paper works very well. Just place it on top of the mix and use your hands to smooth it out.
  10. Next, put the chocolate into another microwave safe bowl, and melt it. Pour the mix into a ziploc bag, snip off the tip, and drizzle chocolate onto the topping. Sprinkle the almonds on top and finish off with a final drizzle of chocolate.
  11. And if you’re crazy like Opie’s Boy, drizzle more caramel on top
  12. Let everything cool down before cutting them into bars, and then prepare to enter a sugar high!

xo dessertchick

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