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Coconut Lime Bars

Hello friends.  Thank you for being here with me today.  I know many of us are hurting and still feeling a ranch of emotions from the tragedy of last Friday.  For days, I could not bring myself to watch the news.  It was just too heart breaking and too close to home.  Even still my exposure to the news is limited.

It's time like these that I cling to the simple things.  Cherishing and holding on to every laugh. Stealing every hug and kiss I can get my hands on.  Sitting in the carpool line and seeing their smiling faces turn that corner.  Cleaning up the kitchen after time well spent baking cookies with loved ones.  I know that this time of year is typically spent with family and friends but this year, in honor of those little ones, let's  linger a little longer, hug a little tighter and smile a little brighter.  We owe it to them.  We owe it to our loved ones.  If any good thing can come of this tragedy it's that none of us take another day for granted.

This past weekend I got the urge to bake.  It just felt comforting to me.  The boys watched movies, we listened to Christmas music and were lucky to have my mom (Grammy) staying with us.  I wanted something fresh and light so I made these coconut lime bars and the boys gobbled them up quickly. These day to day things we do as humans seem so insignificant but they're not.  These are the moments we hold on to when we have nothing else.  I pray that everyone who is missing a loved one this holiday season will find a way to hold on to those precious moments.   Those simple moments that make up life as we know it.

*****Coconut Lime Bars*************************************************************
(adapted from Martha Stewart)

// Ingredients //

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature plus more for greasing pan
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
2 cups all purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1 tbsp. finely grated lime zest
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 package (7 oz.) sweetened shredded coconut

// Directions //

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan; line with parchment, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides. Butter parchment. In a large bowl, whisk butter, brown sugar, and 1/3 cup granulated sugar. Add 1 egg; whisk until smooth. Stir in 1 cup flour, salt, nuts, and lime zest. Spread batter in pan. Bake until top is set and very light golden, 15 to 18 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup granulated sugar, 2 eggs, and vanilla. Reserve 1/2 cup coconut; stir remaining coconut and 1 cup flour into egg mixture. Gently spread over base; top with reserved coconut. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Using parchment, lift cake from pan and cut into 24 bars.