Saturday, October 5, 2013

Semi-Sweet Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies with Coconut Flakes

This is my 150th post!  One day shy of three years and six months, I cannot believe that I have written this many posts.  It has been a true pleasure to share my recipes and musings with all of you.  I really appreciate those of you that pop over here to see what scrumdiddlyumptious offerings The Chef Doc has to share.  

School has finally started!  I just completed my first full week of school and well, let's say this--let the studying commence!  It is back to a life of commuting, traffic, early alarms (5:30am equals yucky), paper bag lunches and snacks, textbook reading, desperate wants for naps, fitting in workouts, and trying to make homemade meals as much as I can.  And let me vent about this--the weather blows!  Literally!  For those of you who have never been graced with the presence of Santa Ana winds, consider yourself lucky.  It is super dry out and ridiculously warm for October.  However, I guess for So Cal, it is quite normal.  

I think of nothing cozy or fuzzy.  I think of shorts and tank tops and the beach.  In fact, I was at the beach this morning and it was crowded with beachgoers and especially surfers, who were catching awesome waves due to winds.  Yes, it is basically a dry summer day for us here in So Cal.  For those of you who are currently experiencing it with me this weekend, please stay moisturized and try to keep a positive outlook, okay? 

Now, onto that sweet and long title you see at the top.  These cookies came as an inspiration to one-up Pepperidge Farms' Sausalito cookies.  I hadn't eaten them in a decade or so?  How long have they been out?  I really do not remember but it's been a good long while.  Well, last weekend I was hit with the desire to purchase them because I remembered enjoying them when I was younger.  Now, you know that I do not buy cookies anymore.  I can't recall when I last bought cookies.  Perusing this website, you know I am a fan of homemade cookies and enjoy the homemade flavors, textures, and even the process of making them.  

Well, I had a Sausalito cookie on Sunday night as I was settling into the season premiere of Once Upon A Time.  Oh... my... gosh.  Palates change as you grow older and well, I don't know what mine was thinking of years ago when I liked these cookies.  It was terrible!  They're super-dry, very crispy, and have some sort of artificial flavor going on.  Uh uh, no thank you.  Any of my cookies taste better than this.  I think I am a cookie snob.


So, I set out to create my own version.  One word: scrumptious!  Fabulous!  Amazing!  Okay, three words.  These are packed full of macadamia nuts and accompanied by semi-sweet chocolate chips and the beloved chewiness of shredded coconut flakes.  You know, another thing that bothers me is when some food products are skimpy on the main ingredients.  It feels like a total ripoff.  You know what I am talking about.  These aren't a ripoff at all and the flavors all work together wonderfully--the slightly bitter chocolate with the buttery macadamia nut and the sweetened coconut?  Divine.

These cookies are loaded with the star ingredients and have a crisp exterior and a soft interior.  That's how I like my cookies and usually how I develop my recipes; it's the best of both worlds!  It took me so many years of experimenting over and over to develop a recipe where I could achieve that.  Well, I finally have and applied it to this recipe.  It takes some time to make these because there is a waiting period.  Patience is a virtue, okay?  Yours and others' tastebuds will thank me for it.  The cookie dough must be refrigerated for 36 hours.  This cooling time helps create that beautiful texture!  


Um, yeah... what are you waiting for?  You have to make these now.  

Semi-Sweet Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies with Coconut Flakes
Yield: more than four dozen

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs (large or extra large)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups macadamia nuts, roughly chunked (still fairly large)
  • 1 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup shredded coconut flakes, sweetened
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, Kosher salt, baking soda and powder, and set aside.

2. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars together until light in color and fluffy in texture (at least five minutes).  With a rubber or silicone spatula, scrape down the sides and bottom and mix again.

3. Next, add your eggs one at a time to the mixture.  Then, add the pure vanilla extract.  Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix again.

4. On low speed, pour in a third of the dry mix.  Add the coconut flakes.  Pour in another third of the flour mix.  Add the macadamia nuts.  

5. Finally, pour in the last third of dry ingredients as well as the chocolate chips.  Mix until the flour is fully incorporated.  If there are any areas that do not look like the ingredients are evenly distributed, use your spatula to mix through.  

6. Refrigerate the dough for 36 hours.  No less than 36 hours and no more than 48 hours.  *Don't freak out that the dough will become crumbly and a little dry; that is normal.*

7. When ready to bake, remove the cookie dough from refrigerator and preheat the oven to 350F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Using a #40 disher (can be bought at your local restaurant supply shop), scoop 12 balls of cookie dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheet.

8. Bake for 11 to 12 minutes, when cookies may be a little white in the middle, which is totally fine because there is carryover baking when you remove them from the oven.

9. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and and let the cookies cool for five minutes as is.  

10. With a flat, heat-proof spatula, transfer the cookies onto a wire rack and cool completely.

11. Store in an airtight container and see how long they will last :-)

The #40 disher makes the perfect-sized cookie!
Who knew cookie images could be so comforting?
Mmm mmm mmm.

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