My obsession with all things coconut continues: I present to you these Coconut Bars, perfect for all of your afternoon tea and picnic treats! Even better - these coconut babies are nut-free, gluten-free, and vegan, so you can share these without displaying any warning signs. You can thank me later. These Coconut Bars are sweet, chewy, very coconut-y (obviously), and rich. The coconut flavor comes three-fold from coconut oil, coconut extract, and coconut flour - they are like eating macaroons in bar form, or like eating white chocolate covered coconut. Yes, please.
Notes: The original recipe uses all white sugar, but I swapped some out for brown sugar, which gives it a bit of caramel flavor. These Coconut Bars are good at room temperature, but I found that I loved them even more chilled. They became chewy and dense, rather than soft and crumbly. You can choose how you like to eat them, but alongside tea or coffee, they have found their match made in heaven.
Read More: The Shared Dessert Bars
Time: 1 hour
Yield: 12 large squares or 24 small triangles
8 oz. high quality white chocolate
1 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 egg whites, lightly beaten
1 /2 cups coconut flour
Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9-inch by 13-inch baking pan and line the bottom and two sides with parchment paper. (Leaving a bit of overhang makes it easy to lift the cooled bars from the pan).
Break white chocolate into small pieces and dump into a large mixing bowl. Heat the coconut oil in a small saucepan over low heat or in the microwave for 1 minute, until oil is hot when touched. Pour oil over the white chocolate, and whisk until smooth. Add coconut and vanilla extracts, salt, and egg whites, stirring well to combine.
n a separate bowl, hisk together both sugars. (If brown sugar is very lumpy, microwave for a few seconds to soften the brow sugar and press lumps with the back of a spoon or sif.) Stir sugars into the white chocolate mixture - a few small lumps are just fine. Stir in the coconut flour, until just combined.
Pour batter evenly into the prepared baking pan, and smooth out the top with a spatula. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the top is set and golden. Cool completely in the baking dish set on top of a rack. Once cool, remove the Coconut Bars from the pan and cut into desired pieces. Devour at room temperature or chilled.
Adapted from Saveur Magazine.