The time of year is fast approaching when we’ll all be invited to parties and gatherings with family, friends, and colleagues. I enjoy making homemade treats for the people I care about, but visual presentation has never been high on my list of strong points. It’s a lot easier for me to wow the taste buds than it is for me to pop the eyes.
These chocolate coconut cookies are a bit labor-intensive, but they’re fairly simple to make. They require much more patience than decorative skill. Because I’ve been willing to invest time and effort into baking and assembling them, especially since I’ve had my daughter to help me and we’ve made baking and decorating them a fun family activity, they’ve become perennial favorites at holiday get-togethers over the years–they’re cute as a button, you might say.
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon coconut extract
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups flaked coconut
1 6-ounce package semisweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
1. In a large bowl, beat together butter or margarine, sugar, milk, coconut extract, baking powder, and salt till light and fluffy.
2. With a spoon, stir in the flour and coconut. The dough will be crumbly. Squeeze the dough together with your hands.
3. Divide the dough into four equal parts. Shape each piece into a ten by one inch log. Wrap each log in plastic and chill for an hour or till firm.
4. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
5. Slice each log into about twenty 1/2 inch thick slices. Place the slices an inch apart on greased cookie sheets.
6. With a toothpick, make four holes in a square pattern near the edges of each cookie to resemble a button.
7. Bake the cookies for 20 to 25 minutes. Cool slightly and remove from cookie sheets.
8. Melt semisweet chocolate with shortening. Stir till smooth.
9. Dip the bottom of each cooled cookie into the chocolate so that the chocolate goes up the sides of each cookie slightly. Scrape the excess chocolate off the bottom of each cookie with a spatula to leave a thin layer.
10. Place the cookies, chocolate side down, on waxed paper. Allow the cookies to set.
Makes about eighty cookies. Store airtight. Dough can be made ahead and refrigerated two weeks or frozen two months before slicing and baking. Enjoy!
About the Author
Jo Elizabeth Pinto was among the first blind students to integrate the public schools in the 1970’s. In 1992, she received a degree in Human Services from the University of Northern Colorado. While teaching students how to use adaptive technology, she earned a second degree in 2004 from the Metropolitan State College of Denver in Nonprofit Management. She freelances as an editor and a braille proofreader and is a contributor of The Writer’s Grapevine Magazine where more articles like this may be found.
As an author, Pinto entertains her readers while giving them food for thought. In her fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, she draws on personal experience to illustrate that hope is always an action away.
Pinto lives in Colorado with her husband, her teenage daughter, her guide dog Spreckles, and an aging family cat named Sam-I-Am.
Her website is: http://www.brightsideauthor.com.