We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Cookie Recipe #13 - Ambrosia Macaroons

Biting into an Ambrosia Macaroon can confuse the palate of your tongue. It will be trying to decide what brings more pleasure-the chocolate beginning, the chewy coconut center with the pop of orange, or the crunchy bottom ending the experience.
Bring a smile to your taste buds!

Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, softened, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel, 3 large eggs, 24oz. sweetened flaked coconut (about 6 cups firmly packed), 3/4 cup chocolate chips, melted.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Beat butter in large mixing bowl until fluffy. Add sugar and salt; mix until blended. Beat in orange peel; then eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in coconut until completely incorporated.

With tablespoon drop dollops of mixture unto GREASED baking sheets 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake macaroons until golden brown on bottom and browned in spots, 14-15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on baking sheets. If you try to remove them before they are cool, they will fall apart.

Transfer to cooling racks. In small saucepan over low heat, melt chocolate chips, stirring continually until completely melted. Using a fork, drizzle hot chocolate over cooled cookies.

Makes 3 1/2-4 dozen mounds of tongue-pleasing satisfaction.

I forgot to grease my baking sheets when making these today and found it difficult to remove them (one fell apart in the process and had to be eaten immediately!). Also, important to let them cool on the baking sheets completely.

Cookies Rule!!!

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