Recently, my mom had some shredded coconut she wanted to use and offered to bake macaroons for my husband and me. Only problem was, we don’t like macaroons! She asked if there was something she could make that my husband might like and the only thing I could think of with coconut that he enjoys are a certain Girl Scout cookie. Hmmm… Any time you want to rip off a recipe for something it’s as easy as searching Google for whatever you want plus “recipe.” My mom used to instructions at this website.
This recipe is a little involved and took a while because of all the steps involved. You have to make and bake shortbread, toast the coconut, and in our case, we even made the caramel for the topping since we didn’t have any caramel candies at home. To make everything a little easier, we chose not to cut holes in the middles of the cookies to skip a step and make spreading the topping simpler. I definitely think it was worth it to sacrifice the hole in the cookie and use that time to make the caramel, as it turned out very tasty!
You’ll find on the instructable site that there are links to a simple shortbread recipe and the caramel topping. Both worked great! If you’ve never worked with caramel before, the recipe says to cook it to a “firm ball” stage. This means, when you drop a dollop in cool water and take it out with your fingers you can roll it into a pliable ball that is still a little soft. Cook longer, and your caramel will be too hard. If it’s not cooked long enough the caramel may be too gooey and never set on the cookie. For reference, the recipe said to boil the mixture for 20 minutes, and our caramel was ready after about 17. For the chocolate bottom and drizzle, we used Ghiradelli 60% baking chunks and bars.
The cookies turned out amazing! I’m not even a huge fan of these cookies to begin with, but homemade they were simply heavenly! I think an easier and just as delicious way to enjoy this treat would be to press the shortbread into a 9×13 and bake it through, then top with the caramel coconut mixture and either drizzle with melted chocolate or top with chocolate chunks and let them melt on the warm caramel. Once cooled, they could be cut into bar cookies. This would be faster and easier than spreading caramel on each shortbread cookie. All that would be missing is the chocolate bottom. If I ever try this, I’ll let you know how it goes!