09 January, 2014

Monte Carlos

When I purchased the sweet little book, The Afternoon Tea Collection, from the bargain bin at Barnes and Noble, I had no idea the delights that awaited me.

So far I have made a few of the recipes, and this one is another hit. Buttery, coconut sugar cookies are sandwiched with butter cream and a dollop of jam ~ they are irresistible. These cookies are naughty, they call to you from the tin in the other room. Thank goodness they are so tiny, I don't feel too horrible sneaking one. The recipe was easily halved, as I didn't think we could possibly eat 50 within a few days time before we either tired of them or they were no longer so great. I'm sure these would make a welcome treat to a holiday cookie tray or even a bake sale. Little bites of heaven, I say.

The recipe is simple, although filling the cookies was a bit fiddly. I came up with a technique in which I spread a generous layer of buttercream on one cookie, then took my offset spatula and scooped a tiny bit out of the middle, dollopped the jam in that little hole and popped another cookie on top. This seemed to prevent loads of oozing jam. There was still some ooze, but not nearly as much and honestly, who cares? Oozing jam makes them that much more appealing. Case in point, my oozy jam photo, looks brilliant, doesn't it? *Le sigh* I'm off to that cute little tin in the kitchen, full of delightful little gems...

Monte Carlos
from The Afternoon Tea Collection

185g unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon coconut extract
110g brown sugar
1 egg
185g self rising flour
110g plain flour
40g desiccated coconut (shredded, unsweetened coconut)

30 jam
120g icing sugar
60g unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
2 teaspoon cream

Preheat the oven to 325F. Line cookie trays with parchment.

Beat butter, sugar, extracts and coconut, along with a generous pinch of salt until light and fluffy. Add egg, beat until incorporated. Add flours and beat until just comes together. Roll teaspoons of dough into balls and place on cookie trays 1 inch apart. Flatten eat cookie with the tines of a fork. Bake for 12 minutes until lightly golden. Cool completely on cooling racks. Beat icing sugar, butter, extracts and cream until a thick butter cream comes together. Spread a generous amount onto the flat, bottom of one cookie, using an offset spatula, gently scoop a tiny amount of cream from the middle to make an indentation for the jam, dollop a drop of jam (about 1/4 teaspoon) into the hole, sandwich another cookie on top and gently press together. These cookies should be tiny, a two little bite wonder. Keep that in mind when shaping the cookies ~ they should be about the size of a nickel (if it were a spherical shape).

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