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~ My Chewy Coconut & Crispy White-Kit-Kat Cookies ~

IMG_1844The first time my mom came home from the grocery store with a bag of white chocolate chips, I was fascinated by them.  "What are you going to do with these?"  It turns out she was going to bake white-chocolate macadamia-nut cookies that Nestlé had printed on their package.  "Daddy loves macadamia nuts."  I knew he was going to love mom's new all-white cookie invention -- I could barely wait for the butter to soften.  Tick tock.  As we two gathered together and measured the list of ingredients, it was mom who schooled me on the fact that white chocolate morsels weren't chocolate at all.  I was fascinated by that too.  I miss those kinder, gentler times.

Nowadays, I dream about these all-white Christmas cookies:

IMG_1809My holiday cookie selections to add to Kitchen Encounters this year were centered around my favorite candy bars from my youth:  Over-the-Top Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cookies, Chocolate & Peanut-Butter-Snickers Cookie Squares, and today, cookies made with Hershey's white-chocolate-coated Kit Kat wafer cookies.  White chocolate and coconut team up in a sweet treat that pairs two textures together:  chewy coconut and crispy wafers.  There's more: Thanks to a modicum of sugar (just one cup) they're pleasantly, not cloyingly, sweet.  Yummy.

IMG_17481 1/2  cups salted butter, at room temperature, very soft (1 1/2 sticks)

1  cup packed light brown sugar

1  large egg, at room temperature

2  teaspoons pure coconut extract

2  teaspoons pure vanilla extract

IMG_17431 3/4  cups unbleached all-purpose flour

3/4  teaspoon baking powder

1/2  teaspoon baking powder

1/2  teaspoon sea salt

5  ounces packed sweetened, flaked coconut (1 cup)

16  ounces mini-sized white Kit Kat candies, each candy cut into 4 morsel-sized squares

IMG_1753 IMG_1753~ Step 1.  In a large bowl, on medium-high speed of electric mixer, place and thoroughly combine butter, light brown sugar, egg and extracts, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a large rubber spatula, about 1 minute.

IMG_1767 IMG_1767 IMG_1767 IMG_1767~Step 2.  Remove the mixer.  All at once, add all of the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using the rubber spatula, thoroughly incorporate these dry ingredients into the butter mixture -- this will take a minute or two, but it's easy to do.  A thick, uniformly-colored cookie dough will have formed.  Add and thoroughly fold in the coconut, followed by the Kit-Kat pieces.

IMG_1774 IMG_1781 IMG_1781 IMG_1781~Step 3.  Using a 1 3/4" ice-cream scoop as a measure, place 12-15 rounded-scoops of cookie dough, well-apart on each of 3, 17 1/2" x 12 1/2" baking pans that have been lined with parchment paper.  Work one-pan-at-a-time, meaning:  Chill a pan of cookies in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. When first pan comes of out of refrigerator, place the second pan in. When the second pan comes out, place the third pan in.  When each pan comes out of refrigerator:  Bake on center rack of preheated 350° oven for 10-12 minutes -- cookies will be very soft but puffed through to their centers, and just showing signs of browning.  Cool cookies, on pans, 5-6 minutes, to firm them up, then, use a spatula to transfer them a wire rack to cool completely, 1 hour.

Bake in 350° oven 10-12 minutes.  Cool on pans 5-6 minutes.

IMG_1789Transfer to wire rack to cool for 1 hour.

IMG_1807I'm dreaming of a chewy coconut & crispy white-chocolate  wafer cookie kinda Christmas morning:

IMG_1859My Chewy Coconut & Crispy White-Kit-Kat Cookies:  Recipe yields 3 dozen, 3"-round cookies.

Special Equipment List:  cutting board; chef's knife; hand-held electric mixer; large rubber spatula; 3, 17 1/2" x 12 1/2" baking pans; parchment paper; 1 3/4" ice-cream scoop; thin spatula; wire cooling rack.

6a0120a8551282970b01bb08a30027970d-800wiCook's Note: There are two kinds of people.  Those who finished their holiday baking and those who haven't started.  If your holiday is under control in a Martha Stewart-esque way, the force is with you and you need no help from me. However, if you just got home from doing all of your gift shopping and find yourself panic stricken and in need of a last-minute cookie recipe, preheat your oven to 325 degrees now for:  ~ My Six-Ingredient Last-Minute Egg-Nog Shortbread ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2017  


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