I'm here, staring rather aimlessly at the screen, occasionally flicking from one site to the other, seeing but not really absorbing. The hours seem to fly by so swiftly; it'll be morning before I know it and the cycle repeats once again. Midnight's just passed, the countdown just ended, the chimes of phones form a symphony in the living room.
It's a yearly affair.
And yet, how am I spending this one? As far as I can remember, new year's eve (the chinese one) has always been spent in this bedroom where I'm sitting in right now, with me reading or engaging in literary work with new pyjamas. I've got this odd jumble of emotions and thoughts regarding tomorrow rolled into a confounded ball like yarn that the cat just toyed with. Perhaps it's the weather, perhaps it's just me.
So here I am, twiddling my thumbs and thinking of tomorrow. Thinking of meeting old relatives. Thinking of what to say. Thinking of what to do. Gosh, this might just be more challenging than chemistry.
Anyhow, that's not the point of this post. Well, not entirely.
It's about pineapple tarts.
Pineapple tarts, oh, pineapple tarts. (I'm talking about the jam-on-top type here) There's some sort of a love-hate relationship when it comes to them, isn't there? A crisp cookie base, buttery and slightly salty, relatively good to eat. Then the pineapple comes and ruins it all. I'm not exaggerating. This glob of overly-sugary, overly-concentrated pineapple 'jam', if you can even call them that, marches over and squashes the poor cookie base with it's sickly-sticky rump. When consumed, it lodges itself in your gullet until you can somehow force it down with plenty of gagging. The mere thought makes me wince. Urgh.
To combat this unfortunate problem, I made my own version of these cookies. And trust me, these revel in a halo of glorious light when compared to the originals.
These cookies were a gift for a relative after a prolonged and much-delayed period of time. The thing is, these are some of my best. No kidding. I've been baking north, west, east and south for friends and family - most of which are dark chocolate rye cookies by Chad Robertson. They're just the thing for snacking, aren't they?
Still, this isn't about chocolate - it's about coconut, and a dollop of pineapple to go with. As I said in my previous post, I'm all for seasonal flavors, and today, pineapple and coconut.
In this recipe, I've incorporated a good deal of coconut, both in bits and essence, as well as a tinge of homemade pineapple jam, since I'm no fan of open-faced pineapple tarts (they leave you choking and gasping for air as the gunk of overly sweetened jam, if you can call it that, lodges itself firmly in your throat and refuses to budge. yes, it's that bad). Either way, this cookie's crisp and light due to the coconut oil used. Here's some tips for making them:
- don't over-process the oats. just an oat bran-esque consistency will do.
- the cookies won't be the easiest to form, so do be careful to pinch them together well.
- the ten minutes of cooling is VERY important, otherwise the cookies will break apart,
- do NOT over-bake. when the coconut fragrance is emitted and the cookies are browned, they're there.
- be sure to space them out pre-baking, or else the cookies will be stuck together.
and last but not least, enjoy! Happy lunar new year, everyone.
Coconut Pineapple Jam Thumbprints
total time: 20-30 mins / make time: 8-15 mins / cook time: 12 mins
makes 12 cookies
1 c rolled oats
1/2 c desiccated coconut
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c coconut oil (or any other neutral oil + 1 tsp coconut extract)
3 tbsp pineapple jam
1. Preheat oven to 170c.
2. In a food processor, lightly pulse oats, coconut, salt and sugar.
3. Add in coconut oil and continue processing for about 1 minute or so until crumbly.
4. On a baking tray lined with parchment, spoon out the mixture in 12 tablespoonfuls, with a 2 cm spacing in-between.
5. Compress them in balls, press down and make a little indent in the middle, pressing the 'cracks' at the side together. They should be about 1.5 cm high.
6. Spoon out the jam in 1/2 tsp portions into the little indents. Bake for 10-12 minutes, when the cookies have browned and spread slightly.
7. Remove the baking sheet and let it cool for 10 minutes. Store in an airtight jar. Enjoy.
- to be continued -