Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies
Hey, serious question time.

Out of all the smells on earth, which is your absolute favorite?

I know, this is kind of personal for a Wednesday, but I feel like we’ve reached that level in our friendship.

And, also, I can’t decide for myself.

I’ve been over the question, in my head, mostly, for the past few days and I can’t settle on one answer. There is too many smells that I love. Seriously, though, like the Juicy perfume I wear, or fresh laundry, or Thanksgiving dinner, or that manly man smell—you know the one I’m talking about—or baby smell, or even the smell when you open a brand new book. How is one supposed to settle on a favorite?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

You just can’t. It’s impossible. Or, I should say, it’s impossible for me.

What I can do though, is settle on two. I can’t tell you which is first or second, but I can tell you, without hesitation, these are my absolute favorite smells on earth. PERIOD.

You ready?

My two favorite smells are….

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Freshly brewed pot of coffee AND cookies baking in the oven.

I know, kind of predictable considering I consume rant about coffee more than your average person, and have a baking blog that quite often features cookies. But, it’s the truth, predictable or not. Those two smells are absolute heaven to me. Really, they need to be bottled and sold. Don’t you agree?

I’d buy it in bulk. And then I’d send you a bottle of each. Okay, fine, two. But, only because I like you.

The problem is, like I said, I can’t narrow it down to one smell.

I just can’t. 

Or, can I?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Oh hi Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies.

What’s that you say? You have coffee in you? And when you bake you leave a faint smell of coffee in the air?

Oh my. How wonderful.

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

Toasted coconut shreds, mini chocolate chips, and coconut coffee grinds all combined into a soft and doughy cookie. Oh, and I stuffed the cookies with coffee cheesecake, because…well, because why not?

It’s coffee + cookie + coconut + cheesecake. 

I mean, get in my belly, right?

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies
Yields: about 21 cookies

Ingredients:
Toasted Coconut Mocha Cookies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 3/4 teaspoon fine or coarse coffee grounds, coconut or mocha or coconut mocha flavored
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup sweetened coconut shreds, toasted
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Mocha Cheesecake Filling
4 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 (.07 oz) packet instant coffee dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

Directions:
Toasted Coconut Mocha Cookies
In a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda,salt, and coffee grinds. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl whisk together melted butter and sugars until no clumps remain. Whisk in the egg, and then the egg yolk. Add coconut and vanilla extracts, whisking until incorporated.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together with a rubber spatula until just combined. The dough will be soft, but very thick to work with. Using the spatula fold in the toasted coconut shreds and the mini chocolate chips. Cover the dough and let chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days–I let mine sit overnight.

Mocha Cheesecake Filling
While the cookie dough is chilling, make the mocha cheesecake filling. Using a mixer combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and 1/2 of the instant coffee mixture. Mix until smooth–it’ll have the consistency of a no-bake cheesecake. Place bowl in the freezer and freeze for at least 3 hours–I let mine sit overnight.

Assembling the Cookies
Once dough and cheesecake filling have chilled, start assembling the cookies. Roll about a tablespoon and half of cookie dough into a ball. Make a deep thumbprint in the middle of each dough ball, sort of like a well. Place a teaspoon of the coffee cheesecake in the center of the well and fold the edges of the dough over, using your fingers to enclose the cheesecake in the dough ball. Bake cookies for 11-12 minutes–the cookies will look soft and underbaked. Allow cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

NOTE: I had extra coffee cheesecake, which I dipped these cookies into and ate, but if you don’t want extra, I suggest cutting the cheesecake portion in half.

Cookie Dough recipe adapted from this chocolate chip cookie recipe.

 

Wait, don’t think I forgot, I told you my favorite smells and now it’s your turn to share. That’s how this friendship thing works. I think.

Toasted Coconut Mocha Cheesecake Cookies

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Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries with Marshmallows

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

That title doesn’t do these bad boys justice.

I mean, seriously. I can’t even right now.

Homemade Sweet Potato Fries.

Bathed in a brown sugar mixture.

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

Baked to perfection.

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

Smothered and covered with toasted marshmallows.

Ooey, gooey, crunchy, sugary.

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

Swoooon.

Guys, I may have just fallen in love.

Just look at this gooeyness. Doesn’t it just make you happy?

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

This is how I spend the day before Thanksgiving. Prepping. Baking pies (deep dish pecan pie, anyone?). Making muffins (breakfast on Thanksgiving is important too, you know). And, eating way too many (not enough) of these fries.

Gosh, these fries.

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries Really, a pre-Thanksgiving snack to get you into the mood to eat. And boy, does it get you into the mood fast.

The moment they go into the oven prepare yourself because the smell is to die for. TO. DIE. FOR. It’s almost like bottling Thanksgiving into a spray can and releasing the whole bottle all at once.

Swooooon, again.

Can you tell I like Thanksgiving? And, that I’m slightly in love obsessed with marshmallow smothered sweet potato fries?

Cause I am. I totally am.

Hope that’s cool with you.

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries with Marshmallows
Yields: 1 large serving

Ingredients:
1 large sweet potato
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons of melted coconut oil
7 tablespoons of brown sugar
2 teaspoons of sugar
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (be generous) mini marshmallows

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. I ended up using two baking sheets for one large sweet potato…you want the fries to have enough space on the tray. Set aside.
Wash and peel the potato. Using a sharp knife, cut off the ends. Cut the rest of the potato into strips that are about 1/4 inch wide. Place in a large bowl and toss with the cornstarch, it will leave a very thin coating. Pour the potatoes into a strainer to get rid of any extra cornstarch and clean out the bowl. Place potatoes back into the cleaned bowl.
In a separate small bowl combine 5 tablespoons brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
Add the melted coconut oil to the bowl with the potatoes. Using your hands, toss to coat.
Pour brown sugar mixture over the potatoes and again, toss to coat with your hands.
Arrange the coated sweet potatoes onto the baking sheet, being careful not to overcrowd them. Bake for 15-17 minutes, and then remove from the oven and flip the tray around. Bake for another 10-12 minutes. About five minutes before the fries were done, I once again removed the tray from the oven and flipped over each fry to ensure equal caramelization on each side and then put it back in.
Once done, let the fries sit, still on the tray, on top of the oven as it cools.
When the fries are a bit crispier and not too hot to handle place them in a large bowl. Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons brown sugar over the fries. Toss gently to coat.
Turn the oven broiler on high.
Place the fries in a small dish and cover with marshmallows, add more if needed to ensure the fries are covered completely.
Broil for about 3-5 minutes or until the marshmallows are toasted.
Enjoy immediately!

 

Brown Sugar Sweet Potato Fries