These cookies are super versatile, and are fairly easy to make. What makes them special is their unique biscuit-like texture. These soft buttery cookies are much more like a breakfast bun, than a traditional cookie. I think they are absolutely perfect for breakfast, dessert, or midnight snack. Just be sure to store them in an air-tight container until you’ve eaten them all, or you’ll lose their light texture.
My mom learned how to make these cookies back when she was in high school, and has been making them ever since. The original version calls for preserved (or glacé) cherries, which adds both festive colour and intense sweetness.
Last night I tried adding toasted almonds on top, instead of the cherries. These were really tasty, but probably could have benefited from a sprinkling of sugar. These are great if you don’t want a sweet cookie though.
My absolute favourite combination though is the jam & jelly filled cookies. They don’t look like much… but they are delicious! These mini buns are just screaming for fruit preserves, so why don’t bake it right on top? I would suggest that you bake the cookies for about 10 minutes before adding the preserves, so it doesn’t melt as much as mine did.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup cold butter
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp milk
- 2 cups grated coconut
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- handful of glacé cherries, or toasted almonds (optional)
- Add the flour to a large mixing bowl.
- Grate the cold butter into the flour with a rasp or box grater. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingers until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs.
- Add the sugar, baking powder, and coconut. Stir to combine.
- Beat the eggs with a fork, then add to the mixture along with the vanilla and nutmeg.
- Stir the mixture enough to combine all ingredients, but be careful not to overwork the dough.
- Roll the mixture into 1¼ inch balls in the palm of your hand. Press each ball gently on to a greased baking sheet. Be sure to leave enough space between the cookies for the to spread out.
- Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, or until the cookies solidify and turn a very light golden colour.
- Carefully remove the cookies from the sheet pan and place on a cookie rack to cool.
When you drop the cookies on to the sheet pan, press your thumb into the dough to make an indent. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, then fill each cookie with a small amount of jam or jelly and return to the oven for about 5 minutes.
Recipe adapted from my mom's home economics notebook from 1977.