April 15, 2018

Coconut Cookies with Sea Salt

Raise your hand if you're cuckoo for coconut because these cookies are right up your alley.  I certainly fall under that camp.  I love coconut in pretty much anything sweet, although I tend to stay away when it comes to savory.

I came upon this recipe for Coconut Cookies with Sea Salt by way of my sister this very morning.  She sent me a link to this blog post and I immediately wanted to make them.  I've made coconut macaroons before but what intrigued me about this particular recipe was it's technique and the addition of sea salt.  You whip the eggs and granulated sugar until very light and thick (like you're making a genoise cake) and then add it to the desiccated coconut and butter mixture.   Most recipes I've seen use either condensed milk or cream of coconut which made for overly sweet cookies.  This recipe eased up on the sweetness and the contrast of the sea salt sprinkled on top worked beautifully.

It's important to use unsweetened, desiccated coconut, not the sweetened shredded or flaked kind found at your local market.  Most health food stores will carry unsweetened, desiccated coconut and I've seen it sometimes at Trader Joe's.   To top off the cookies I used my favorite sea salt of all time made by Maldon.  I combined original and smoked flakes together to add a nice twist to the finished cookies.    

Coconut Cookies with Sea Salt

Makes ~ 2 dozen cookies (depending on size)

3 tablespoons (40g) unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 cups (200g) unsweetened, desiccated coconut
2 large eggs
2/3 cup (130g) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon sea salt for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat and add the coconut. Mix well so the coconut is well-coated with the butter.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the eggs with a mixer on medium speed just until blended. Add the sugar and beat on medium-high until the mixture is light-colored and fluffy. Stir in vanilla extract.  Combine the butter-covered coconut gently with the egg mixture and mix well.

Using a 2 tablespoon ice cream scoop, drop the batter onto the parchment-covered baking sheets and press down gently on the mound until it is relatively flat.  Keep about an inch (2.5cm) of space between each cookie, more if you aren’t flattening them. 

Bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle the tops of each cookie with a pinch of the sea salt.  Slide the entire sheet of parchment with the cookies intact onto a wire cooling rack. As soon as they are cool, put them in an air-tight container otherwise they will lose their crispness.

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