I remember once upon a time my mom would spend literally an entire weekend at a time making plates upon plates of Christmas goodies.
And me? Well, I helped her of course! Until the inevitable happened – the inevitable being that I got sidetracked by the television, a friend calling to talk, or a chapter of a tattered paperback Babysitters Club book. You know, by important things.
But one thing I will never forget is how she always put all of her time and effort into making treats for other people. I think these December weekends were the first times that I really saw what it looked like to give selflessly to others. Sure, a cookie and a ball of fudge won’t save the world but it will brighten someone’s day, and our teachers always looked forward to our mom’s Christmas plates filled with goodies. And I always looked forward to “helping.”
That’s kind of what this next week is going to be – a kind of Christmas plate ‘o’ goodies in blog form. I have spent way too much time baking lately, have inhaled way too much sugar, and I might just be OK if I never see another cookie again for the rest of my life. I’m willing to sacrifice for you guys!
We’re going to start off easy today and make cookies that are easy to make ahead, and all you have to do is slice and bake them when it’s time to serve. They’ll transport you to a faraway beach somewhere (ready, set, name your favorite beach: Smuggler’s Cove on Tortola BVI!) where you are no longer confused about whether you live in Colorado or North Dakota, where you can actually consume alcohol and eat things like sushi, and where you can lay in the sun all the livelong day without a care in the world. It’s coconut and lime people – this is the stuff magic is made of!
Adapted from this recipe from Bon Appetit
- 2 sticks butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- 3 Tbsp lime zest
- 1 tsp vanilla
- juice from 2 limes
- 1 whole egg + 3 egg yolks
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut (I used sweetened coconut, although you could certainly use regular coconut)
Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and egg yolks and mix until combined. Add the vanilla and lime juice and mix well. Add the lime zest and mix until well combined. Sift in the flour and salt and mix until just moistened, then add the shredded coconut and mix until everything is well combined. Divide the dough in half and roll each half into an 8 inch long log about 2 inches in diameter. Wrap in plastic and chill until firm, for a couple hours, or overnight. You can keep the dough in the fridge for 2 days before using. When you’re ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350. Remove the logs of dough from their plastic and slice into 1/2-inch discs. Place an inch apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes until the bottoms are golden brown. Let cool for about 5-10 minutes on a cooling rack before serving.