Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Caramel Coconut Squares
With harvest just around the corner, I'm digging through the recipe box looking for quick and tasty cookie recipes.
Caramel Coconut Squares fit the bill on both counts. With limited time available, putting together a bar cookie makes sense. It dirties fewer pans, always a plus. Once the cookies are assembled, you don't have to spend additional time putting drop cookies on baking sheets, removing them and starting the process again.
Don't get me wrong. I make plenty of drop cookies (See Back to the Basics.) In fact, in preparation for harvest and for a Vacation Bible School supper tonight, I tripled my basic cookie recipe last weekend and divided the dough into four different bowls. My add-ins were white chocolate/macadamia nut; oatmeal with dried cranberries and white chocolate; chocolate/chocolate chip; and I tried the new Almond Joy Pieces. I then packaged an assorted 3 dozen on a plate for VBS and packaged the rest in twos in sandwich bags. Then they are ready pull from the freezer for a suppertime treat during harvest.
But, back to the Caramel Coconut Squares ... When you see the ingredient list, you'll think that sweetened condensed milk manufacturers have sponsored several of my last recipe posts. If only that were true. ... I can dream, can't I? But sweetened condensed milk is a central ingredient again in this recipe.
So, no, Caramel Coconut Squares are not going to fit into your weight-loss plan. However, it's a great cookie to stick into the suppertime harvest meal run. But it can also hold its own as an addition to an assorted cookie tray, even for a fancy occasion that doesn't include wheat dust, sweltering temperatures and cheat in your socks.
Here's what you'll need:
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup butterscotch chips
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 tsp. vanilla
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add flour and mix well. Pat into ungreased 9- by 9- by 2-inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes. Combine milk, butterscotch pieces, coconut and vanilla. Spread over partially baked layer.
Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown around edges, 25 to 30 minutes. Cookies will not appear set. Cool; cut into squares. Makes 36 squares.