Friday, March 6, 2009

Pineapple Coconut Thumbprints

I’ve been trying to rotate through some of my cookie cookbooks to find some new recipes and my husband picked a couple of recipes out of The All-American Cookie Cookbook and I decided to make this one. I’ve noticed that I have made a lot of chocolate things lately, so this is a nice change of pace.

Now I don’t typically like thumbprint cookies all that much, but the flavors in these couldn’t be beat! I was curious how the dried pineapple would be in a cookie, plus I love coconut. I have a feeling that dried pineapple comes in many variations. The recipe warned not to use candied pineapple, as that would be way too sweet. The recipe gave both a volume measure (1-1/2 cups) and a weight measure (8 ounces). I ended up using the volume measure because I had 1-1/2 cups of pineapple after chopping only 4 ounces or so. The pineapple was really difficult to chop, so I was happy to stop when I did.

I also used two different types of preserves, since plain pineapple preserves were not to be found at the store. One batch I used a Banana Pineapple Rum Preserves. I don’t really like banana at all (I can’t stand the smell of bananas) and I thought they smelled a little too much like bananas and not enough like pineapple. The other batch used pineapple mango preserves. These preserves were a lot sweeter, but I liked it a lot better. It’s this batch that you see in the photos.

These cookies don’t really brown at all, so it’s a bit tough to tell when they are done. I went for the maximum time and hoped for the best. When they had set enough I could tell that they were browned on the bottom so I was happy about that. They take a little bit to set up, but they are nice and tender. The pineapple flavor is wonderful. The coconut is very subtle, as is the macadamia, but together they are really nice. Maybe I just haven’t tried the right thumbprint cookies, because I really liked these.

2-1/2 cups flour

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon baking soda

1 cup butter, softened

¾ cup sugar

1 egg plus 1 egg yolk

Zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons vanilla

½ teaspoon coconut extract

1-2/3 cups shredded coconut (divided)

1-1/2 cups finely chopped dried pineapple

¾ cup macadamia nuts, finely chopped

About 1 cup pineapple preserves

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with silicone baking mats.

In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar, egg and egg yolk and beat until fluffy. Stir in the lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla and coconut extract. Stir in half of the flour mixture and mix until combined. Stir in the remaining flour mixture, 1 cup coconut and the dried pineapple. Stir until all ingredients are well combined.

In a small bowl, combine the remaining 2/3 cup coconut and the macadamia nuts. Shape the dough into one-inch balls and roll the balls in the coconut-macadamia mixture. Place on the prepared baking sheets. With your thumb, press a deep well into the center of each ball and fill with approximately ½ teaspoon preserves.

Bake for about 12 minutes or until just the slightest bit browned. Let the cookies stand on the baking sheet for several minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe from The All-American Cookie Book by Nancy Baggett

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