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Entries in coconut milk (8)

Sunday
Sep232012

Triple Coconut Cookies

Triple Coconut Cookies

In the past few months, I feel like I've finally started cracking the secret code of recipe development. In truth, I've been working towards developing my own recipes since the beginning of this blog, but progress has been very slow. At first, I changed a few ingredients here or there, playing around with different flavors. With these slight adjustments, I felt like I was moving forward, one chocolate chip at a time.

Even though I did leave a significant mark, the recipes were always another's at heart.

Triple Coconut Cookies

Sometimes I would jump full force into an idea, combining ingredients with abandon and without the experience to know in what proportions they should come together. The results were mixed, with at least half ending up in the trash. I grew frustrated waiting for experience to catch up to the visions in my head. The ability to develop recipes wasn't a natural ability bestowed by the pastry gods; it would have to be earned through long hours in front of a stand mixer.

I woke up well before the sun to spend my mornings in a bakery. There were tears over spilled cake(s). There were plates piled high with treats brought to work and shared with friends.

Triple Coconut Cookies

It took precisely three tries to get these Triple Coconut Cookies right. The first time I didn't add enough flour and the cookies spread out thinly in the oven. While the flavor was right, the texture wasn't quite what I had envisioned. The second attempt was improved, but I knew that the tweak of a few ingredients would take the cookies from better to best.

These cookies are more than just a recipe that turned out right. In a way, they signify the journey of a girl who studied physics and made cakes from box mixes to a girl who takes a wild idea and makes it a reality in the kitchen.

Triple Coconut Cookies

Triple Coconut Cookies are truly a coconut lover's dream. The base of the cookie is made with coconut oil and stuffed with sweetened flakes for a chewy, yet soft texture. Once cooled, the cookies are topped with a light glaze infused with coconut milk to add an extra touch of sweetness. Then, as if it wasn't enough already, the cookies are topped with toasted coconut to complete the triple threat.

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Tuesday
Jul102012

Coconut Scones

Coconut Scones

After my holiday in Hawaii, I drifted into island time. Without a salty ocean to wade into or a sandy beach to sip cocktails on, I opted for hot showers and drinking sweet, red wine in front of the television. After the sunshine and shaved ice, it was hard to go back to a reality full of work, workouts, and cooking my own dinner. I held onto island time much longer than I should have, trying to convince myself that it was okay to pretend I was on vacation when I clearly wasn't. I was putting off work, eating poorly, and didn't set foot into the gym for months.

Eventually even I realized these bad habits needed to change.

Coconut Scones

I set myself back to a proper work schedule. I completed a month long vegan challenge to jump start a healthier diet. Finally, after avoiding it for too long, I gathered up my courage and faced the gym this afternoon.

Before I caught island time fever, I prided myself on the fact that I regularly made it to the gym five or six hours a week. I was a fixture in the mornings, taking cycling classes and toning through weight lifting. For the first time in my life, the muscles in my biceps couldn't be crushed flat by a set of strong hands. I had calf muscles that surpassed those of my ballerina sister who can dance on the tips of her toes. I could even visibly flex my back muscles. I was proud of the sweat that dripped down my face and the results I achieved.

Then, I threw it all away.

Coconut Scones

I hesitantly walked into the gym this afternoon. The building rests only a couple blocks from where I live now, making it all the more shameful I haven't set foot in one since I moved. I got a membership to bribe myself into regular attendance and headed off to my first class in three solid months—circuit training. There were four of us in the class and it became blatantly obvious that I was having a hard time keeping up. Weights I used effortlessly just months before, suddenly felt like lead bricks in my hands. I was more than half a beat behind in my jumping jacks and I couldn't jump rope to save my life. In hindsight, I really should have chosen a yoga class.

I slowly walked back home with a proverbial tail between my legs, my muscles wobbling like a bowl full of Jello. The "truths" I had been telling myself (You're still in shape! You didn't get winded walking up that flight of stairs, it must have been from the heat) unequivocally became lies. Luckily, it's never too late to head back to the gym and fix the ails of neglect (which I'll do right after I make another batch of these scones).

Coconut Scones

These coconut scones are a delicate, subtle way to begin the day. These scones are a triple coconut threat, holding coconut oil, coconut milk, and coconut flakes in their flaked layers. The scones are dairy/egg-free, but you'd never guess it. The finished scones are glazed in a sweet coconut glaze before serving, which adds just the right amount of sweetness. This is my new favorite breakfast sweet and may be the best scone recipe I've shared with you.

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Wednesday
Aug312011

3 Milk Coconut Cake

3 Milk Coconut Cake

On the coast of Oregon, there is an undiscovered restaurant resting in the small town of Oceanside. Unless you happen to stop in the town of 300 people to catch the sunset on the beach, you would never know this little corner of heaven existed. With a view of the ocean that could make your heart sing and food to rival any prized restaurant, it's a true gem.

A genuine hidden treasure.

3 Milk Coconut Cake

A wooden beach house on main street has a small sign reading Roseanna's Cafe. With only a handful of businesses on main, Roseanna's is easy to spot—you can't miss it. The lightly faded curtains hanging in the windows invite you inside.

The interior is small but friendly, holding no more than a dozen tables. The decor is dressed up as if you had just gone to visit your grandmother. It's familiar and quaint. There is an immediate sense of belonging—one or two meals at this place and you may want to start calling Roseanna's home. I know I did.

3 Milk Coconut Cake 3 Milk Coconut Cake

At the end of July, a few friends and I rented a beach house on the coast of Oregon for a week. It was a beautiful visit, filled with the rise and fall of the tides and sand behind my ears. Near the end of our stay, we were craving a good, fresh seafood dinner. Willing to travel many miles for a feast, we wound up just a few minutes down the road. Roseanna's was the place to go, we were told.

And so we went.

3 Milk Coconut Cake

A quick glance at the menu is enough to make your mouth water. Simply reading through the descriptions will send your taste buds into a tailspin. Though I am not normally a seafood fan, I found myself getting excited about a real seafood dinner. With too many delicious options on the menu, my friends and I decided to share a little food here and there so everyone would get a taste. We started with seafood stuffed mushrooms and a loaf of bread I could swear was lighter than air. Though we tried to take our time and savor it, it was promptly inhaled with everyone fighting over the last few crumbs. It was a deliciously dirty sight when one of my friends nearly licked the plate clean for fear of wasting such a divine cream sauce.

For my entree, I ordered the scallops drenched in a sun-dried tomato butter with a side of potatoes and string beans. After my first bite, I could have sworn I had died and gone to heaven. The flavors, the scallops, the butter... I immediately converted to a seafood lover. My first thought was of unspeakable emotion. The second was whether or not it would be strange to order an identical second entree. The third was to make everyone else have a bite because something this sinfully delicious couldn't be contained to one person or one stomach.

3 Milk Coconut Cake

And then, of course, came dessert. Though we had a few desserts sent to the table, the 3 milk coconut cake was deemed the table favorite and disappeared the quickest (we even begged the waitress for the secret to this heavenly cake). With the sun setting over the ocean and good friends around the table, it couldn't have been a happier moment.

3 Milk Coconut Cake

With that very moment in mind, I set out to recreate my own version of the 3 Milk Coconut Cake served at Roseanna's. The cake is essentially the base of tres leches cake, meaning a very light cake that can absorb a lot of liquid. A glaze of coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, and coconut rum (who says you can't have a little fun?) is then poured over the cake. After soaking overnight, the cake is topped with a coconut rum infused whipped cream and toasted coconut. Man, oh man, this cake is good. Just ask my mother—she's eaten four pieces just today.

For a kid friendly version, substitute heavy cream for the rum in the glaze and remove it completely from the topping (though, you don't have to share this one with the kids. It can be a special treat just for you. Just saying).

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