Monday, September 10, 2007


I had fresh coconut and sweetened dried coconut to use up, so I searched for a coconut chocolate chip cookie recipe. After reviewing several, I chose these wonderful coconut-chocolate chip cookies. Since the recipe is listed as a Food and Wine staff favorite, I figured they'd be good, and they are! They are crunchy and chewy yet tender at the same time, and the flavor is excellent.

Coconut-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Yockelson's Large and Luscious Two-Chip Oatmeal Cookies

1 cup + 1 Tbsp. All Purpose Flour
1 Tbsp.cornstarch
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
3 oz. unsalted butter + 3 oz. Smart Balance Buttery Spread (or 6 oz. butter)
1 cup sugar + 1 Tbsp. molasses
1 large egg + 1 large egg white
1-1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract, + 1/2 tsp. coconut extract
1-1/2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1-1/2 cups toasted coconut (I used half sweetened, half unsweetened)
1/2 cup toasted broken or chopped walnuts

First, toast the coconut and nuts -- you can put them in the same pan -- in a 9x12 or other suitable baking pan that will allow you to spread everything out in a single layer. Bake them at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, watching them carefully so as not to burn. Stir them after about 8 minutes. They don't need to brown thoroughly. Just release the aromatic oils. When you smell their aroma, you can take them out. If you leave them in too long they will be bitter. Cool on counter while you mix cookie dough.

Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Beat the butter, sugar and molasses until light and fluffy at medium speed in a large bowl, preferably using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Add the egg, egg white, vanilla and coconut flavorings and beat till combined. At low speed, stir in the dry ingredients, then mix in the oats, chips, coconut and nuts. (If you do not have a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, you will have to mix in the oats, etc., by hand using a strong wooden spoon.) Cover the cookie dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to 3 days.

When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.  Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto the baking sheets, about 2-3 inches apart. Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes, until just set. (The actual cooking time will vary according to the size of the dough you use, the actual temperature of your oven, and the cookie sheet you use, so use a toothpick just like you would for testing a cake for doneness. When it comes out clean or almost clean, they are done. If you hit a chocolate chip, you will have to test another part of the cookie until you find a test area without chocolate.) Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet on the counter for 4-5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely. (I used a small ice cream scoop to measure the cookie dough and as photo below shows, I was able to fit 13 on a pan. When one pan was done and removed from the oven, I put the other pan in. When the previous batch was transferred to the rack, the pan was allowed to cool. About 3 minutes before next batch was done baking, I loaded up the cooled pan with cookie dough right on the same parchment paper. This worked well and kept the process going smoothly. Putting two pans in the oven at the same time creates uneven baking and the cookies are not uniformly baked.)

Here are the cookies baking in the oven. You can see that they puff up nicely, but when they come out, they fall.  Not to worry, they are delicious!

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