Thursday, February 19, 2009
Cranberry Coconut Cookies
It is no secret that I adore baking with shredded sweetened coconut. Some of the sweet treats made of shredded coconut that remains popular here are coconut poppy seeds cake, coconut cake with buttercream frosting and carrot cookies .
Sweetened shredded coconut ( also known as flaked coconut) is not the same as dessicated coconut. The latter is unsweetened, finely ground and cannot be used interchageably with flaked coconut. Dessicated coconut can be used for savoury applications - especially in Indian cooking.
Back to the cookies - this cookie will spread and will be thin if the dough is not refrigerated. Here are some my tips to cookie baking: I always line my baking sheets with Silpat or parchment paper. The baking sheets should be cool before placing dough onto it. Hot baking sheets will cause the dough to melt, and drastically change the texture and shape of the baked cookie. Rotate baking sheets halfway during baking as this ensures even cooking and colour. The dough should be of the same size and thickness when placed on sheet, or the cookies will not bake in the same amount of time. I use various sizes of ice cream scoops that I have just for this purpose. Always leave some space between each cookie - an inch and a half to 2 inches. Let baked cookies cool for a few minutes before transferring onto a rack (unless specified otherwise in the recipe). Cool cookies on a rack completely before storing - the bottoms of baked cookies could turn soggy and in some cases moldy otherwise.
Coconut Cranberry Cookies -adapted from Martha Stewart
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 (3 sticks) cups unsalted butter - room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
grated zest of 1 orange
1n1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
1/4 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift together flour, salt, baking powder and set aside.
Using a stand mixer ( on high speed), cream butter and sugar until pale and light. Add vanilla extract and grated orange zest to the creamed butter mixture. Reduce speed to low and pour in sifteded flour mixture to creamed butter. Add in dried cranberries and shredded coconut as well.
Chill dough in the fridge for at least 1 hr .
Unchilled dough will result in a flat and thin cookie. Shape dough into little balls, flattening them a little on top and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or Silpat. Bake trays of cookie for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges begin to brown, rotating trays halfway.