What is a coconut never guilty of?

Nuttiness.

I love summer parties. They are so much fun. Normally for parties, if I don’t make something savory, I make pie. It’s kind of my thing.

But, sometimes I just don’t have time for making pie. In those rare cases, I tend to lean toward an easier dessert. Usually, that easier dessert is cookies…since, who doesn’t LOVE cookies? They are usually simple to make. They are portable. They are fun to eat…really, you can’t go wrong.

And what could be better, what says summer more than chocolate and coconut?

Mounds, Almond Joy, Samoas; any and all the chocolate and coconut combinations.

Probably my favorite, growing up as a girl scout, is the Samoa cookie. It’s just so good…but, not exactly the easiest cookie to make.

Until now.

One of my best friends has, what she calls, a “Lazy Samoa” recipe.

It is glorious. Delicious. Chock full of chocolate and coconutty goodness.

Whenever I’ve had her lazy samoas, they’ve always been chilled, and they are perfect that way. It might be a hold over from my childhood because we always kept the classic Samoas in the freezer. But, whatever. Eat them at room temperature. Eat them from the fridge. Either way, you will be licking your fingers with delicious, delicious satisfaction.

I made a double batch of this recipe, and took them to three parties on the 4th. They were a hit at each one. And I probably should have brought more.

The only step I don’t have photographed are the chocolate dipping/drizzle step and the final product…I was running late and didn’t have time to set my shots. But, you’re all smarty pants. I think you can figure out how to dip the cookies in the chocolate.

So, big thanks to Kelly. She still makes the best version of these. I don’t know her secret…but damn, that girl can bake.

One final note, and this is very IMPORTANT: Make sure that you measure all the coconut oil in liquid form. Otherwise it doesn’t mix right.

Kelly’s Lazy Samoas

Ingredients

2 c grated unsweetened coconut
1/3 c unrefined coconut oil (melted)
¾ c firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 c non dairy milk (I used coconut milk, but almond or even regular milk is fine.)
1 Tbsp ground hemp seeds (or flax seeds)
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
1 c all purpose flour
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt

For Decorating
1 cup chocolate chips
2 tablespoons unrefined coconut oil.

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Pour grated coconut into a skillet or large fry pan and toast over medium low heat.  2
  3. Stir occasionally and toast coconut to a light golden brown, 8- 10 minutes.3  Promptly remove the coconut from the heat and stir occasionally as it cools.  If the coconut continues to cook when off the heat, pour from the skillet into a large dish and spread it around to help hasten cooling and stop cooking.
  4. Combine coconut oil, brown sugar, milk, flax seeds and vanilla until well blended and smooth. 1
  5.  Sift in the all-purpose flour, baking soda, and salt and mix to form a thick batter.4
  6. Fold in the toasted coconut.5
  7. Scoop about 1 tablespoon of dough two inches apart onto the baking sheets.  Flatten each cookie with the back of a measuring cup and use your fingertip to work a small hole into each center. 6
  8.  Bake for 8 minutes, until the edges are golden.7
  9.  Cool cookies on baking sheet for five minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Once cooled, transfer to plates or cutting boards lined with waxed paper.
  10.  While the cookies are cooling, melt chocolate chips in the microwave or double boiler and then stir in the coconut oil.  Allow the chocolate to thicken for five minutes.
  11.  Dip the cookie bottoms into the chocolate and return them to the wax paper.  Then drizzle the remaining chocolate over the top.
  12. Allow the cookies to chill for at least 30 minutes to firm them up. (If you can wait that long…)
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Today’s recipe doesn’t lack apeel…

Sometimes I find myself just not in the mood to do much, especially when I am busy or have a lot on my mind…it happens. I can’t make complicated dishes every day. Sometimes I just want to do the minimal amount of work and still get maximum flavor when it comes to food.

When I’m feeling food lazy, I usually make banana pancakes. They are yummy. They have 2 ingredients. They are quick. Minimal fuss. Maximum flavor. When my brain slows down (because it’s summer, and summer time at the library is INSANE) it demands simplicity. 1It doesn’t get much simpler than 2 ingredient pancakes. Though, to be fair, if you add in spices and things, it’s slightly more than 2 ingredients. But, if you’re going classic, then the name holds true. Personally, I do love some cinnamon and vanilla and nutmeg in my pancakes. Or a dash of pumpkin pie spice to simplify things. Sometimes I throw in some nuts. Or top them with Greek yogurt and maple syrup. Or peanut butter.

What I’m trying to say, through my epic rambling, is that these pancakes are simple to make, delicious, and a wonderful canvas for flavors. They are fluffy and light. They are packed with protein, and just a hint of sweetness, without all the added sugar. They are satisfying.

If you find yourself unable to brain because you have the dumb, this is the recipe for you! I know I’ve shared a banana pancake recipe with you much, much earlier on in this blog, but this is the updated version, and oh so much better.

2 Ingredient Banana Pancakes

Ingredients62 eggs
1 ripe banana
optional ingredients
Pumpkin pie spice
Vanilla

Method

  1. In a medium bowl, mash the banana well. It doesn’t have to be completely smooth, some chunks are fine.
  2. Add in the eggs.
  3. Whisk to combine.5
  4. Stir in spices if using.
  5. Place a pan over medium heat, making sure to coat the pan well with cooking spray.
  6. Depending on your pan size, you can either make one big pancake, or several small pancakes. 4
  7. Cook the pancake(s) until the edges look set and lift slightly away from the pan. About 3-5 minutes3
  8. Flip the pancake(s) once and cook the other side until done. Another 3-5 minutes.
  9. Serve with yogurt or syrup or both.  (I put molasses and Greek yogurt on mine!)2

What is the last piece of cheese called?

Forever provolone.

Warm weather makes me crave cool salads. Any kind. All kinds. Potato. Macaroni. Tuna. Pasta and veggie. But, I think my favorite salad combination is tomato, basil, and mozzarella, the classic caprese. Any which way I find that it is fabulous. And classic. And delicious.

Tomatoes being in season now, or at least more in season than they were in January, makes all the difference. They are sweet and juicy and delicious. Tomatoes are my summer spirit animal. I can’t get enough of them. In every way, shape, or form.

This salad is my own mashup and super simple to make. I had some leftover red quinoa and spinach in the fridge. To that, I added the tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. Were I to make this again (which I will), I will add more spinach or kale or other leafy green, and some garlic. Wonderful.

Quinoa Caprese Salad

s1Ingredients
2 c cooked quinoa
1-2 c cooked leafy greens (spinach, kale, collard greens), chopped1/2 pint of cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2-1 c cubed mozzarella cheese (or small indivdual mozz balls)
6-8 basil leaves, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil to finish

Method

  1. Mix the quinoa, leafy greeens, tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil together in a large bowl. s6 s5 s4 s3 s2
  2. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Enjoy on a warm summer day.