Don't you ever wish that Girl Scout Cookie Time came more than once a year, I know that I am not the only one , that buys enough to stick in the freezer for the whole year.I am obsessed with girl scout cookies....having been a girl scout myself as well as selling them when they were still $1.50 a box, I wait every year for them to come around.Sadly we live in a world now where its not longer safe to go door to door, so I usually have to catch them one Saturday (in season) in front of the grocery store. So now that I found a recipe for them, I no longer feel "stalkerish" looking for the little green uniformed girls outside of Trader Joe's.
You can make Samoas ( or Carmel Delites as they are called) at home. Try them out... they are just as good as the real thing :)
yield about 3 1/2-4 dozen cookies.
1 cup butter, soft
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
up to 2 tbsp milk
3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12-oz good-quality chewy caramels
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp milk
8 oz. dark or semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips are ok)
make the cookies:
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a second, larger bowl with an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the flour mixture until combined. Add the vanilla and combine. The dough should come together into a soft, not-too-sticky dough. If the dough isn’t coming together, add 1 tablespoon of milk at a time as needed, until the dough forms a ball. It’s possible you may not need to add any milk at all. If the dough is impossibly sticky, sprinkle with a bit of flour.
3. Divide the dough into 2 or 3 portions. Roll out each portion between large pieces of wax or parchment paper to a thickness of no more than 1/4 inch. Transfer the dough and parchment to the refrigerator to chill for 10 to 15 minutes.
4. Use a 1 1/2-inch cookie cutter to cut dough rounds. If you wish to make your cookies exact replicas of the original Samoa, cut a smaller hole in the center of each cookie using a knife, the end of the handle on a wooden spoon, or any other small round device that you can find in your kitchen. Transfer the rounds to the prepared baking sheets.
5. Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, until the bottoms are lightly browned and the cookies are set. Cool them for a few minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
make the topping:
1. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F ( 150°C). Line another baking sheet with parchment.
2. Spread the coconut evenly on the baking sheet and toast, stirring every 5 minutes, until the coconut is golden, about 20 minutes total. Cool the coconut on the sheet, stirring occasionally, until it cools to room temperature. Set aside.
3. Combine the caramels, milk, and salt in a large microwave-safe bowl. Heat on high power for 3 to 4 minutes, stopping to stir it a few times to ensure the caramels melt evenly. When the mixture is smooth, fold in the toasted coconut. Using a small metal offset spatula, spread the topping onto the cooled cookies, using 2 to 3 teaspoons per cookie. If the caramel becomes too firm to work with, reheat it in the microwave for a few seconds. Let the cookies set.
4. Place 8 ounces of the chocolate, coarsely chopped or broken into pieces, in a small microwave-safe bowl. Heat on high power in 45-second intervals, stirring to prevent scorching. Dip the base of each cookie into the chocolate, scraping it along the edges of the bowl to smooth it, and then place on parchment or wax paper to set. Transfer any remaining chocolate into a piping bag or a resealable plastic bag with one corner snipped off. If necessary, melt additional chocolate. Drizzle chocolate stripes on top of the cookies. Let the cookies set or, to hasten the process, transfer them to the refrigerator. Store them in an airtight container.
Note: These cookies are fairly time consuming to make, but if you take your time and have fun with them, the results will be worth it.
Variation: Rather than rolling out the dough and cutting individual cookies, you can save a few minutes with this bar cookie rendition. Just follow the instructions above, making the following adjustments:
For the cookies: Use only 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter and omit the baking powder and the milk. After beating the butter with the sugar, beat in 1 egg and the vanilla extract. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour and salt, and combine until the mixture is crumbly and the consistency of wet sand. Press the mixture into a buttered 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Bake until the crust is set and the edges are lightly browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Let the cookie cool completely in the pan on a wire rack.
For the topping: After folding the coconut into the caramel, place dollops of the mixture on the cooled cookie crust and spread it into an even layer using a small offset spatula or, if the mixture isn’t too hot, lightly floured fingers. Let cool completely. Drizzle with the 8 ounces of melted chocolate as directed. If desired, melt the additional 4 ounces of chocolate and, after cutting the bars into individual cookies, dip the base of each cookie into the chocolate, scraping it along the edge of the bowl to smooth it, and then place the bars on parchment or wax paper to set.