Who makes the Chocolate Coconut and Pecan Bars as part of their holiday sweets collection?
Each year I see these trending about and thought why not, after all what’s not to like in the combination of chocolate, coconut, and pecans? Well, it all depends on your tolerance for the really, really, really sweet. Yikes. Did I mention really sweet?
These variation of the same treat under a different name was easily identified in Aunt Betty’s gold file box of recipes bequeathed to me over a year ago. The gold box ultimately contained a lot of recipes, that since Aunt Betty prepared most everything homemade, was more like a ‘this is a clever idea box’ for she never really made most anything contained among those newspaper and magazine clippings stuffed between handwritten file cards with notations from friends penned with things like ” Inez’s party delicious” or “Bunny’s Whipped Cream Cake Very Good Easy to Make.”
It seemed Chocolate Coconut and Pecan Bars might be a fun, quick and easy after school project for my grandson, the J-Dude, so I set him to the task. I mean really there is nothing in this recipe that requires much supervision for a ten year old who’s been cooking with his grandmother practically since infancy.
Same as they say everyone is born with a unique personality, this cookie/candy bar made me ponder on the quotient factor that people are also born with a sweetness tolerance.
And the J-Dude has a high one. High sweetness tolerance, that is.
Even so, while preparing Chocolate Coconut and Pecan Bars, he, in his own food experienced way indicated to me that the ingredient amounts seemed to be too much. I agreed, not to mention that Aunt Betty’s recipe card seemed to have less than the standard, confirmed in the curiosity of checking it out.
The J-Dudes astute observation turned out not to be so much as a teaching moment as a discussion in applying common sense to a method, in this case, even using the designated graham cracker base then halving the pile up of sweet ingredient components would still give you a very sweet bar.
Once baked and cooled we decided that these would be better served in smaller sized bites.
And we did so intermittently stacking and lining the inside of a long plastic container readied for Christmas Eve.
We all need a bit of sweetness in our holiday season, but when it comes to the really, really sweet quotient, for me, better off putting that into just plain practical niceness. I can’t wait to pull out the Christmas Cookie Cutters this weekend readied for preparing a more balanced flavor profile of sweetness for the Christmas Eve tray, some simple old fashioned Christmas Cookies with red and green sprinkles.
- butter for greasing baking dish (spray oil may alternatively be used)
- 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 14 ounce can condensed milk
- 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
- 1 cup pecans, coarse chopped
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 inch baking dish (approximate size.) Pulse graham crackers in food processor to fine crumbs to make 1 1/2 cups, transfer to a medium sized bowl. Pour melted butter into graham cracker crumbs fold throughout to combine well. Evenly spoon buttered graham mixture into greased dish to cover the entire bottom. Drizzle over the condensed milk, sprinkle all about the mini chocolate chips, pecans, followed by coconut, pat down the coconut. Place dish onto a baking sheet, cover with aluminum foil. Bake around thirty minutes or longer, until chocolate has fully melted and coconut is golden browned. Cool bars to room temperature before refrigerating overnight, cut into small sized bites. Chocolate Coconut and Pecan Bars may be frozen between plastic wrap and freezer paper. Defrost in the refrigerator.