Two-Chocolate Coconut Blondies

Well, hello!  What do you do when you don’t have enough flour for a planned Bundt cake, and you’re not due to head to the store for a few days?  I did consider a wild moment of gnashing of teeth and rending of hair, but I’ve too much of a sweet tooth for that drama when I can improvise. 

So…blondies it is!  After a whirlwind pantry tour, I found some shredded coconut and a couple of kinds of chocolate, but not enough of one kind to distribute throughout.  I like to improvise with on-hand ingredients, so I choose some semi-sweet Guittard chocolate chips and I chopped up an 85% cacao PASCHA chocolate bar.  I thought the darker chocolate mixture might offset sweetened, shredded coconut and the buttery richness of the blondie batter itself.

I toasted the coconut on a little foil-covered tray in my toaster oven, keeping watch to make sure it didn’t burn.  I erred on the side of less-toasted rather than burnt, because again, this is not the kind of drama I’m interested in.  (I’m saving that interest for Twin Peaks–Helll-OOO-ooo-OOo! and Better Call Saul.)

Please note the batter will be thick when you spread it in the pan:

But trust me it will all be worth it:

Ah…improvising has delicious rewards!

Two-Chocolate Coconut Blondies

2/3 cup butter (1 ¼ stick)

1 lb. dark brown sugar (2 ¼ cups)

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 ¾ cups plain (all purpose) flour

2 ½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon Kosher or sea salt

1 cup sweetened, shredded coconut

½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used Guittard brand)

1 bar very dark chocolate, chopped (I used 85% cacao PASCHA brand)

Grease13 x 9-inch pan, line with parchment paper, and grease the paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Toast coconut gently in toaster oven or warm large oven, until part of it turns golden. Remove and let cool; toss with fork to loosen any clumps.

Melt butter and let it cool. In a stand mixer, beat the melted butter and brown sugar. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add vanilla. Scrape down sides of the mixing bowl.

Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add these dry ingredients to the batter and mix until just combined. Then add coconut and chocolate chips & pieces. Mix but do not over-mix. The batter will be thick.

Spread the batter in greased 13 x 9-inch baking pan.

Bake 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees F, until inserted toothpick comes out relatively clean but not runny. Cool completely, then carefully remove the parchment paper and blondies to a cutting board. Cut into squares.

Makes 24 blondies.


Lazy Saturday

It’s good practice to have an unstructured weekend.  At first there’s this feeling of relief that nothing is on the calendar.  One can linger over extra coffee.  Catch up on magazines.  Have afternoon tea.

But something happened.  I noticed it was hard to sit still for long.  Not having planned anything, I began to notice things I’d neglected due to a busy schedule.  And once I started working on these things, I realized the day had breezed by.  By no means are all the weekend chores finished, but it feels good.

So rather than being a lazy Saturday, it’s been a productive and satisfying one.  I could get used to this brand of Saturday.

Pressing Pause

It’s been a too-busy week, trying to keep track of too many things.  A four-day weekend looms, and for the first time in weeks, we’ve nothing on the calendar.

Oh, I’ve got plans…need to mail a birthday card, pick up library books, try to stretch the pantry until payday, make some goodies with what we’ve got on hand.  I hope to get good exercise in, and a nap every afternoon.  But it’s kind of nice to have a breather.  To have it unfold instead of boxing it in.

And soon it will be June, and that month will be a sprint.  It’s already over -scheduled.  So…for now…I’m exhaling.  Looking around, drinking it in, and pressing pause.

Sky Gazing

It’s a very May sort of May Day here.  The tiny white clouds, the bright green leaves.  To the West, you can see the marine layer, waiting to drift in tonight:  our natural air conditioning.  

I started a short story today.  I decided I needed to put some more work out there, try and get into a magazine or something.  I confess I tumbled right into it and couldn’t stop writing.  So I didn’t know until just now how lovely the sky looked!

Now I’m taking in the sunshine and the wind, and thinking of resting my eyes for the rest of the day.  Hope all of you have been out and looked at the sky today.