When I was a kid, I remember my Dad buying me a fanciful pinwheel. It spun as you blew on it and its clear plastic rod hid a trove of tiny colorful candy balls inside.
It was truly two treats in one.
Just like these cookies — which are pinwheels of a different sort.
The kind where you get both chocolate and coconut in one delightful bite.
“Chewy Coconut-Chocolate Pinwheels” is by Martha Stewart. With their two-tone design and festive swirl, they a perfect treat at this time of year.
Roll out the coconut-inflected dough into a rectangle, spread with chocolate sauce made with condensed milk, then form into a log and refrigerate overnight.
It takes a little finesse to work with the dough. Use an off-set spatula as well as your fingers to help spread the layer of chocolate on the cold dough as quickly as you can. The chocolate will thicken even more once it touches the cold dough, making it harder to spread. But the heat of your fingers will help make the chocolate a little easier to work with.
Use the parchment paper to help you roll the dough into a log, much like you would use a bamboo mat to make a maki sushi roll.
All the work pays off with one taste of these chewy cookies. The predominant taste is of coconut and vanilla with that slight bitter edge of dark chocolate to round it all out.
These cookies are pretty enough to bring a smile to anyone lucky enough to enjoy one.
Chewy Coconut-Chocolate Pinwheels
(Makes about 3 dozen)
9 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups cake flour, not self-rising
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded desiccated coconut
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat 8 tablespoons butter and the sugar on medium speed until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat until combined.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, and beat on low speed until combined. Add coconut, and beat until combined. Roll out the dough between two 12-by-17-inch pieces of parchment paper into a 10 1/2-by-15 1/2-inch rectangle, a scant 1/4 inch thick. Using a sharp knife, trim to even dough to a 10-by-15-inch
rectangle. Transfer dough to a baking sheet, and place in refrigerator to chill at least 1 hour.
Place the chocolate and the remaining tablespoon butter in the top of a double boiler or a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Melt completely, about 2 minutes, and remove from heat. Stir in the condensed milk. Let stand until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Peel off the top piece of parchment. Using an offset spatula, spread the melted chocolate mixture over the dough. Work as quickly as you can, as the chocolate will start to thicken, making it harder to spared. Using your fingers also helps, as the heat from them will make the chocolate easier to work with.
Using the bottom piece of parchment for support, roll the dough into a log. Wrap the log in parchment, and chill overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Have ready two baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Remove the parchment from the log, and cut log into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Place the rounds on the baking sheets, spaced 1 inches apart. Bake until light golden brown on edges, 8 to 10 minutes, rotating halfway through. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Bake or freeze remaining dough. Store the cookies in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.
Adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe
More Martha Stewart Cookies to Make: Brown-Butter Toffee Blondies