White Chocolate Coconut Mojito Cookies

White Chocolate Coconut Mojito Cookies

I’m not a huge imbiber when it comes to hard alcohol. I joke about it on my facebook page and yes, I do like my wine and every once in a while something harder. But generally speaking, I’m pretty darn boring that way. I did all my drinking in my wild younger days (someday I’ll tell the story of waking up in the backseat of a car, unclothed, with no memory of how I got there. I was…interesting when in my late teens and early 20’s). But even then I tended to drink wine. When I drank the hard stuff, I ended up..well, in situations. Learn from me, grasshoppers.

So I’ve never had a mojito. But the IDEA of them has always intrigued me since I absolutely LOVE lime and enjoy mint too. So the thought of them together sounded yummy. But it meant buying rum and the only time I buy rum is when I buy an airline sized bottle around Christmas to soak my fruitcake in.

So I saw a recipe a few days ago for a Mojito Scone. That sounded interesting but I know I do a lot of that type of baked goods in here and hadn’t done any cookies for a while <insert Cookie Monster voice here saying “COOOOOOKIEEEESSSS!”>. So I thought. Then I thunk some more. Then I answered the door cause the fire department was there saying they had multiple reports of the smell of burning coming from my house.

So I stopped thinking. And that’s when it came to me. These cookies. Mojito flavored. As well as tasting of some toasted coconut just because I love any excuse to throw toasted coconut into things.

These turned out both good and not to my taste, all at once. Will I make them again? Yes, but next time I will double the lime zest, add some lime oil, cut the mint extract in half (it was a bit overpowering for me) and add some coconut extract as well. Then, I think they would be absolutely perfect. But if you prefer the flavor of mint to be more prominent, make them exactly as I will type them out here. Otherwise, try them the way I just suggested up above. that will make the lime and coconut flavors more noticeable. But for an experiment, I was really pleased with these. They are nice and chewy, the toasted coconut was a great addition and were pleasantly buttery. I WILL be making these again 🙂

White Chocolate Coconut Mojito Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1 teaspoon mint extract (cut in half if you want mint flavor lighter)
  • zest and juice from one small lime (remember, double the zest and add some lime oil if you prefer the lime to dominate over the mint)
  • 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut, toasted in a 350 degree oven until light brown (also, about 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract if you want a heavier coconut flavor)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 11 ounce bag of white chocolate pieces
  1. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and the sugars.
  2. Add the eggs, the extracts and the lime juice and zest. Beat until well blended.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to the butter mixture. Mix just until blended. Stir in the white chocolate pieces and the toasted coconut.
  4. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill for about an hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and/or line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  6. Spoon or scoop rounded spoonfuls of the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes. They should be just barely browned on the edges of the cookies.
  7. Let cool on pan for a minute, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.


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Me Old. You Younger. Ugh *Beats Head With Club*

Chewy Coconut Lime Cookies

I’m 47 years old. I’ll be 48 in August. A bit longer in the tooth than the vast majority of food bloggers. And non food bloggers. And much of the population of the Earth. And many outlying planets.

Erhmmm, moving on. I’m older than you. And you. And you. And…oh God, not you… you’re older than God. Get your glasses and Geritol!

Did I mention that moving on thing? Yeah. Sorry. Let’s try that again.

My frame of reference in many ways is far different than that of many of the food bloggers. When they were born, I was in high school. When they were in high school, I was married with at least one kid. So musical tastes, books in some cases, movies, TV shows, etc etc, are going to be far removed from those of many. Sometimes, this leads me to feeling pretty darn out of the loop lol. People will mention books, songs, TV shows, movies, what have you that either I have never heard of or have no interest in because it’s just too young for me. In explanation to anyone who may think I am being snooty there, not at all. I grew up when there were 5 TV channels, as well as movies being a lot…tamer, for lack of a better word. So a lot of the more wild movies (musicians, songs, TV shows ) turn me off. I’m 47 going on 95 😛

But I’ve always loved how some of the above things cross generational boundaries with no problem. I mean, 27 or 47, you’ve heard of the show “Little House On The Prairie”. You’ve heard of and probably jokingly head bang along with the song “Bohemian Rhapsody”. You’ve heard of the movie “Gone With The Wind”. Am I right?

And this song coming up here is one that I think everybody knows for one reason or another. Maybe you’re old like me and remember when the song came out originally (Harry Nilsson sang it). Maybe you first heard it sung by The Baja Men or when Kermit The Frog sang it on the Muppet Show 😀 (I love the Kermit version hehe) But finding someone who has never heard at least the key parts of it would be difficult, methinks.

 

 

So whenever I make anything that has Lime and Coconut in it, this song comes into my mind and I find myself singing it (and wanting a nice Caribbean drink) as I cook. And since the lime coconut combo is a favorite of mine, I sing this often enough that I should probably be put away somewhere safe. With padded walls. And cable TV in my room. And nice sleepy meds. And someone bringing me my food. Hell, this is starting to sound good. Sign me up! Continue reading

I Love Cheesecake And I’m Also lazy

Key Lime Cheesecake Bars

Which is why I don’t make cheesecake often. I love it but for some reason cheesecake is one of those things that seems far too time consuming to me. I THINK I’m going to make it… I have 972 recipes printed out for it as well as those in my vast cookbook collection… I WANT to make them because, well, I love cheesecake but there’s that lazy thing. I like things I can throw together and while I realize logically that other than the crust, you DO just throw cheesecake together, I have this weird “it’s too much trouble” mind block going. Continue reading

You Put Da lime In Da Coconut And Shake It All Up

Hello everybody! Are we all in our places with bright shining faces? Wearing your pearls, makeup and high heels while listening to Mozart as you get ready to make something delicious?

If you are, you are quite possibly on the wrong blog page. Because here, I am in sweats and a t-shirt with no make up on (I’m honestly not sure if I even own any anymore) listening to The Backstreet Boys (Hey! Don’t judge. You can’t tell me you never listen to bubble gum music. Ok, so maybe I’m the only one listening to BSB’s. Still; don’t judge. I’ll cry. And make you eat liver. Or cows tongue.) Erhmmm, sir, does your wife know that you have on her pearls and high heels? I REALLY think you’re on the wrong blog page (*brain bleaches self*)

But I HAVE been cooking something delicious. Can you smell that? That lovely smell of the tropics coming at you from my kitchen? Well, sniff harder darn it! Because it’s there. yeah; there. Oh yeahhhhh… right thereeeee.

Sorry; got distracted for a moment.

Moving on. Wanna know where that smell is coming from? I made muffins! Lovely lime and coconut flavored muffins.

I was contacted recently by the lovely Miranda who was representing the company that makes Melt Buttery Spread and offered some samples of their product and the chance to make something yummy and review Melt™   (buahahahahaaaaa… the power. The poooooooowwwwwwwerrrrrr!. Sorry. I’m fine now.).

I of course said yes after looking at their site because the product sounded delicious. Melt is an organic alternative to butter  made with Virgin Coconut Oil, Flaxseed Oil, Palm Fruit Oil and a few other goodies. Talk about healthy! Flaxseed oil is so good for you and coconut oil is something very representative of the “good fats”. So Melt Buttery Spread is great if you’re trying to watch your weight or cut your cholesterol. Before cooking with it, I tried it on a slice of crusty French bread and it’s pretty darn good. You can definitely taste the coconut oil and anyone who has been following my blog knows I love me some coconut oil.

 

Here are a couple of links from them to go check out. http://www.meltbutteryspread.com/virgin-coconut-oil/ and http://www.meltbutteryspread.com/butter-substitute/

I wanted to make something sweet (go figure huh?) and I wanted something that used the Melt Buttery Spread  in a melted state because a lot of times butter subs don’t work well when baking. So I decided on muffins. Many muffins use either melted butter or vegetable oil so I knew I could sub Melt easily.

One muffin I’ve been making for years is a Lime Coconut one I adapted heavily from one that is on food.com.  These are moist and delicious and smell as fantastic as they taste. I use coconut milk in them (am I the only one who has to force myself to not just stick a straw in the coconut milk can, slurp away and then lick the insides of the can clean?? You’re judging me again aren’t you? Sigh.) which gives them suchhhh a good taste.

The Melt went wonderfully in these due to it’s own ingredients. Like I said, you can taste the coconut oil in the Melt so making something tropical is a natural fit. So give these muffins a try. They’re a quickly made treat. May not be fancy but oh my do they taste great! They’re perfect for breakfast or a light dessert. Then go to the Melt site and check them out. Good stuff!

Tropical Lime Coconut Muffins

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup Melt Buttery Spread, melted
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon lime zest (I didn’t realize I was out of limes so I subbed  1/4 teaspoon lime oil; worked fine.)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coconut extract
  • 1 teaspoon rum extract (optional but adds nice flavor)
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin or line with paper liners.
  2. In a a large bowl, combine your dry ingredients, including the lime zest.
  3. In another bowl, combine your wet ingredients.
  4. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ones. Mix with a fork until JUST combined. Never over beat muffins or you end up with a tough tunnel filled mess.
  5. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full.  Bake at 375 degrees until tops are nicely browned and firm to the touch.
  6. Let cool in pan for a minute then turn onto wire rack to finish cooling.

Blimey, That’s Limey!

 

Key Lime Cheesecake Shake

Key Lime Cheesecake Shake

 

I know; not one of my better post titles. But darn it, I had to get the Lime part in there somewhere. I couldn’t just title it “Key Lime Cheesecake Shakes” now could I? How boring is that? Well, not the shake. The shake is… to use a phrase I completely hate… to die for.

Am I the only one that completely abhors that phrase btw? Seriously? You’re willing to die for it? If not, why say it? Just sayin’. I’d die for my kids, for my husband, for my God and for a few assorted friends. But a Key Lime Shake? Nahhhh. Ok, maybe. If it was THIS shake! I might also die for Cheetos and Twinkies but we all already know I have issues surrounding those two junk foods. I may die for a good steak or some sushi.

I think I’m gonna shut up now since I just buried all my reasons for disliking the phrase “to die for” Sigh. I need to learn when to be quiet and stick to my proverbial guns.

I will NOT die for liver though! Nope nope nope! Not gonna happen! See? I just proved that To Die For is a stupid phrase!!! Yay me!

Ummm, you’re waiting for a recipe aren’t you? I see you there… tapping your feet on the floor and telling me to shut up.  Be nice; I have six kids. I deserve patience. Or therapy. I haven’t figured out which. Hey! I had coffee today! I’m hyped on caffeine. Just please… don’t ask me what my excuse is every other day.

Fine, I’ll post the recipe. *shuffles feet, kicks the dirt and pouts then realizes that if I am kicking dirt sitting at my computer desk, I MAY want to vacuum*

KEY LIME CHEESECAKE SHAKE

With

“ADULT OPTIONS”

  • 3 cups good quality vanilla ice cream (half of 1 of those “I used to be half a gallon but am now only 1.5 quarts” containers)
  • 4 ounce cream cheese, softened & cubed (throw that bad boy in the microwave for 30 seconds even if it’s soft. You don’t want it hitting the ice cream and firming up any before it gets mixed)
  • 1/3 cup key lime juice (you can use regular Persian lime juice. this amount makes a nice tart drink. If you want more sweet than tart, cut the juice down to 1/4 cup)
  • zest from one small lime  plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk or half and half (or you’re really feeling like being bad, use part heavy cream. I won’t tell.)
  • 2 tablespoons graham crackers crumbs, plus more for garnish
  • 2 shots lime vodka if making for adults (I say even if you don’t want to add the vodka, SAY you did when the kids ask. That makes a perfect excuse not to share 😀 )
  1. Dump everything in a blender. Blend. Drink. Make more. Drink. Make more. Maybe omit the vodka this batch so you don’t do something stupid like stick your fingers in the blender while it’s on because you want a taste. Not that I’VE ever done anything like that.
  2. Don’t you just love when I give you these oh so easy but “to die for” recipes? Please… do not die. I take no legal responsibility if you do. But if you plan to, leave me your cookbooks in your will. Thanks. 😛

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Doin’ The Salsa

 

When I was a kid, you didn’t see salsa on the store shelves in Chicago. At least not that I remember in my doddering old age.  There also wasn’t a variety of chips to serve the non-existent salsa with. You had Jays potato chips (yes Jays; not Lays. Jays was/is regional to the Midwest), Doritos in two flavors- Nacho Cheese and Taco (I HATED the Taco ones; still do and wish they had never made a comeback) and bagged popcorn. Yes, yes I AM old. Why do you mention it? I am also old enough to remember when frozen meals were called TV dinners and came in foil trays like this *points down*

I prefer not to think about what the parts that weren’t white meat consisted of. Do Turkeys have lips? These wonderful dinners had school paste masquerading as mashed potatoes and veggies that were so mushy you could feed them to the seniors at the nursing home with no problem.

On the subject of “omg, I’m old and nobody else remembers this”, does ANYBODY other than me remember the pop (soda for those born elsewhere) named “Anna Banana”? I have asked others and no one else seems to remember it.

 

Moving back to the subject of salsa. Yes, that was the original subject… I just got distracted by shiny things. Imagine that huh? When I was a kid, I had never heard of salsa. I imagine it was available in certain areas of the country but not mine. Then came the taco sauces. Thin uninspired mild stuff with very little flavor. Then we started coming into the time when people were branching out in their food tastes and from what I saw, salsas were one of the first things that became something everyone was eating. You name the flavor, there was/is a salsa with that taste. Want some pineapple salsa, no problem! Habanaro Peach Salsa… get it here!  Turkey Lip/Orange flavored salsa? Yep; we have it! Fine, so I’ve never REALLY seen that one but I bet somewhere, someone tried to make something with turkey lips!

My favorites have always been the fruit flavored salsas. There is something about the sweet taste of the fruit mixed with the bite of peppers and onions that I just love. That’s also why I love chutneys. Same fruit to heat thing going on there.

In Spring and Summer, I tend to make Salsas even more. they are a great way to get some fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet. And generally speaking, kids tend to love them too which is always good when it comes to the fruit and veggie idea. So today I kind of cleaned out my fridge of the fruits I needed to use. Add some vegetables, some spice, some sweet and I ended up with a great fruity salsa. It is so good with chips but I can also see it making a fantastic cover for some grilled chicken or fish. I was really pleased with how this turned out so I hope you enjoy it. 🙂 This really needs to be eaten the day it’s made to maintain the fresh taste and texture of the fruits.

SPICY THREE FRUIT SALSA

  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 peaches, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 10 grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/2 jalapeno, very finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle pepper powder (can omit this if you prefer more mild but it adds a nice smokey flavor and aroma)
  • zest and juice of one lime
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Mix everything together in a large bowl. Taste for personal preferences. I added a bit more chipotle and a touch more lime but that’s cause I love them both.
  2. Eat.
  3. Comment here telling me how easy and how tasty this was. 😛

Munchkins

Is there anyone alive who hasn’t watched The Wizard of Oz at some point in their life? When I was a kid, it came on TV every year. So did Willy Wonka and the Chocolate factory but we’re not talking about chocolate today. Though thinking of it is there a BAD time to talk about chocolate? Sorry. I got sidetracked. Imagine that. I loved that movie when I was a kid; still do actually. But I have to confess. The Lollipop Kids freaked me the hell out. I loved the Munchkins. I wanted one of my own. Hey, I was young! I wasn’t thinking they were people, I just thought they would look great lined up with my stuffed animals. But The Lollipop Kids? Really; they scared the poop out of me. I’m not sure why really. But they struck me then and now as something out of a kids nightmare.

What is it with small things that brings out the oohs and ahhhs in all of us though? Munchkins to line up with your stuffed animals, human babies (did I mention that I have six kids? I swear, I didn’t KNOW that they wouldn’t always be cute and tiny! No one told me about teenagers!), kittens (I want a kitty!!), puppies, even little foods. Something about small stuff turns most people, especially women (though my husband gives most women a run for their money when it comes to turning into goo over babies) into piles of genetic goo.

I have heard before that babies are small and cute to make us think twice about leaving them out for the wolves to get when they keep us up nights and I can’t disagree 😛 I figure the last time I got a full nights sleep was about 1985. If my husband had his way, I would continue remembering sleep fondly until I was too old to remember how to put a diaper on. We have ten between us and every time we go to the store, if he disappears, all I have to do is listen for the sound of cooing and I know it’s him, getting teary eyed and loving on somebodies baby. Personally, I think it’s cute but don’t tell him I said so.

Like I said though, even cute foods seem to bring out the awwws in most of us. I think that’s one reason cupcakes have been all the rage for the last couple of years. I know it’s not just that small and not too much to eat thing because if you eat the equivalent of half a 9 inch layer cake in cupcakes, it kills the not much to eat part. Or maybe that was just me. Never mind.

When I finished making today’s recipe, I called my husband and two teen boys into the kitchen as I cooed over the cute little cakes. They weren’t impressed with the size and looked at me as if they were thinking about calling the man with the little white coats. They just wanted to eat them. EAT THEM?!  But…but…but… they’re CUTE! I pointed and emphasized the cuteness. Zachie, my 14 year old just said “Uh huh. Can I have one now?” Heathen.

So go make these adorable little cakes. Just promise me that you”ll coo over them and call everybody into the kitchen to see them before you eat them. You might not want to line them up with your stuffed animals though. Damn, I want a munchkin.

LIMEADE POUND CAKE

These are exceptionally moist, very simple to make cakes. They are tender and have enough of a lime flavor and tartness to them that I didn’t even add my normal ton of Lime zest to them. You don’t even really need the glaze but I can’t think of any logical reason not to use it anyway 😀

  1. 1 box lemon cake mix
  2. 1 cup sour cream
  3. 1 12 ounce container frozen limeade, thawed and divided
  4. 4 ounces cream cheese, softened (use the rest on a bagel. Yes, one bagel. I like cream cheese. Make me happy.)
  5. 3 large eggs
  6. 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour (or use cooking spray) a 12 cup Bundt cake pan. Or, as I did, use mini cake pans and muffin tins. I got 8 mini cakes and six cupcakes from this.
  • Place the cake mix,  half the limeade, sour cream, cream cheese and eggs in a large bowl. Beat for one minute on low speed, then scrape the bowl. Continue beating on medium speed for about 2 minutes.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan or whatever pan you’re using.
  • Bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Turn onto a wire rack and let cool thoroughly.
  • Mix 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar with limeade, a little at a time, until you get a glaze of spooning consistency. Spoon over the cake(s)
  • Eat four of them and then tell yourself that the calories don’t count because they are tiny. And cute. Awwwww….. look at them!!!