Sunday, December 23, 2012

12 Days of Christmas Cookies: Girl Scout Samoas

I've never been a big fan of coconut (one obvious exception: coconut rum), so I never liked Girl Scout Samoas when I was a kid. Or when I was a teenager. I've only developed a taste for them in the last few years and now they are my absolute favorite! I was excited to try this homemade samoas recipe. I've gotta say... I don't see a big similarity between this and the Girl Scout cookie, but these are still very, very good... one of the most unique cookies I've made so far!

1/2 c sugar
3/4 c butter, softened
1 egg
1/2 t vanilla
2 c all purpose flour
1/4 t salt

3 c shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12 oz soft caramel candies
1/4 t salt
3 T milk
10 oz dark or semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9x13 baking pan, or use parchment paper. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter. Beat in egg and vanilla extract. At a low speed, gradually add in flour and salt until combined. The dough may be crumbly- that's fine!

Spread dough out on baking pan with a spatula into an even layer. This will be your cookie base. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until edges begin to brown. Cool in pan.

When the cookie base comes out of the oven, turn the temperature down to 300 degrees. Spread coconut in an even layer in a separate baking pan and toast for 20 minutes, stirring every 5- until coconut is golden brown. Allow to cool on the baking pan.

Unwrap caramels and place them in a medium sized microwave safe bowl. Add salt and milk and microwave until smooth, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Fold in coconut with a spatula. Spread coconut caramel mix on top of the cookie base in an even layer and allow to cool completely.

Once cool, use a pizza cutter to cut into 24 cookie bars. Once bars are cut, melt chocolate in a small bowl until smooth, stirring frequently. Dip the base of each bar into the chocolate and place on a clean piece of wax paper or parchment paper. (I used salad tongs to dip each cookie.) Drizzle any remaining chocolate on top of the cookies with a small spoon. Let chocolate set completely before placing in an airtight container. (I put my cookies in the freezer for a bit to speed up the process).

Hannah's cookie note: This recipe has several steps, but don't be overwhelmed... just make sure you give yourself plenty of time to make these!