A few weeks ago I posted about roasting almonds. What a simple and delicious treat that was to make (and give)…
Though, I must be honest, the real reason behind roasting almonds was to make handmade coconut, almond bars!
The recipe calls for roasted almonds, so, I made them…
Then, I enjoyed a few and stored the rest until I had time to begin the process of making what I was really wanting to make – the handmade chocolate bars…
I’ve always wanted to try making homemade chocolate treats and Karen Solomon offers up an irresistible recipe in her book, jam it, pickle it, cure it.
So I tried it.
Though, not in one day. Not with a busy schedule and an even busier four year old…this was a project spread out over a few days and one late night…late because I had to wait until the boys were asleep – these were going to be a surprise!
First I roasted the almonds. Then stored them. Well, not all of them, I did enjoy a few…
Then, a few days later I prepared and baked the coconut, almond bars.
Then wrapped, stored, and hid (they were going to be a surprise, remember?) the prepared bars for a few more days…
And finally, when time allowed (under the cover of darkness) I coated each with chocolate…I don’t have photos of this step because I lacked natural light (it was late at night while the boys slept)…plus, I needed both hands to dip and twirl the bars once coated…
The finished product was well worth the wait (and planning time), so don’t let a lack of time stand in your way. Consider spreading the process over a few days and you’ll be rewarded with a sweet treat unlike any other.
No additives, preservatives or things unknown to most…just simple ingredients arranged with love. Too bad I didn’t get an almond in the shot…
No need for a dozen candy bars? Why not wrap individually and give as gifts? Or freeze a few for those days when nothing but chocolate will do…or add a few to a little ones Easter basket or give as party favors? The ideas are endless…
So much joy in a little bar. Who knew?
Coconut almond bars
slightly adapted from - jam it, pickle it, cure it, and other cooking projects, by Karen Solomon
Here’s what you’ll need;
2 large egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut
24-28 whole roasted salted almonds
2 cups chocolate chips or chopped chocolate
What to do;
To make the bars, preheat oven to 350 degrees F., and prepare a rimmed baking sheet with a thin sheen of oil.
Combine the egg whites, sugar, vanilla and salt in a bowl and mix with a fork. You don’t have to beat the whites – just make sure the sugar, vanilla and salt are well incorporated.
Fold in the coconut. The batter will be stiff, like oatmeal.
Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the batter into your hand, and shape into a 1 1/2 inch log. (*side note – these bars could be made smaller too and then just use one almond per bar) Press 2 almonds into the top of the log, and place on the prepared baking sheet.
Follow suit with the remainder of the batter. You should have at least 12 bars.
Bake for 13-17 minutes, or until the bars are just brown at the edges.
Let cool 1 minute, transfer to a wire rack, and leave for about 30 minutes, or until completely cool.
To coat the bars, prepare the baking sheet with a sheet of waxed paper or parchment paper, and have it ready.
Heat the chocolate over a double boiler and stir until it is melted and quite satiny. You should be able to drop it in ribbons from the end of the fork.
Using two forks, drop a bar into the chocolate and coat lightly on all sides, then quickly transfer to the waxed paper. Dip the remaining bars. If the chocolate gets too thick or your chocolate starts to get stiff, heat the chocolate some more, stirring well to distribute the heat.
Leave the finished candies at room temperature for about 4 hours, or until completely cool.
How to store;
Store in an airtight tin or a sealable plastic bag, at room temperature, for up to two weeks or freeze.
Do you have a favorite homemade candy recipe? If so, share a link below!