>On the way back from Florida on Sunday, we were required to make frequent stops. Normally, we’re an as-few-stops-as-possible kind of family, but when you’re traveling with a 3-month-old you’re often subject to the whims of the reptilian brain. On one of our many stops, we found ourselves in the parking lot of a Magnolia Plantation. If you’ve never driven through rural central Georgia, you may not be familiar with these stores – they are similar to an old-timey Stuckey’s with rows upon rows of pecans, peanuts and tempting sweet treats. It really is quite evil….
On my way through the store to the restroom, something compelled me to pick up a box of these.
I love the combination of citrus and coconut, and I just couldn’t pass these by. I should have taken a clue from the neon green tint of the candy that something just wasn’t right, but, again, I was compelled by an unseen force and just had to try them.
They were not good.
Sickeningly sweet with only a modicum of lime flavor, mostly overpowered by the cloyingly sweet sensation that can only come from high-fructose corn syrup.
Needless to say, my craving for coconut and citrus was not satisfied. Luckily, I had just what I needed in my pantry at home (will wonders never cease?!).
3 1/2 cups unsweetened flake coconut
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 egg white
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons orange zest (optional – could use lemon or lime zest, too)
2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted – for dipping (optional)
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted – for dipping (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 325 degreest
2. Mix first 5 ingredients together in a bowl (add the sixth if you like)
3. Spoon by scant tablespoons onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet
4. Bake in center of oven for 20-25 minutes, checking frequently to ensure coconut is not becoming too brown (I baked mine in a convection oven at 300 and they only took about 15 minutes).
5. Allow to cool on racks.
6. Dip as desired in chocolate and nuts.