Wednesday, August 24, 2011

homemade almond joys

Intriguing, no?

I was perusing one of my favorite foodie sites, Joy the Baker, and saw this.

And since Almond Joys are one of my favorite candies,
I had to continue reading.

Once I read through the recipe, it made perfect sense!
Condensed milk was the secret!

Yummy, sticky, gooey condensed milk.
To make all the coconut stick together.
Press a toasted almond on top and dunk in chocolate.
Easy peasy.

Homemade Almond Joys
Makes 25-30.
Taken from Joy the Baker.
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
2 1/2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut
25-30 almonds
about 20 ounces (a bag and a half) of good quality semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350*, spread raw almonds onto a baking sheet and toast for about 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together sweetened condensed milk, powdered sugar, salt and vanilla extract.  

Stir in the unsweetened coconut.  The mixture will be thick.  Place mixture in the freezer for 30 minutes.  It's easier to work with if it's a little cold.

*See how the flakes are so big.  You do not want this.  The only unsweetened coconut I could find was in big flakes and not shredded.  I would process the flakes to make them easier to deal with the next time.*

Remove the coconut mixture from the freezer.  With clean hands shape one tablespoon of coconut into a little log about 2" long and 3/4" thick.  Press the logs together very well so they don't crack when dipped.    Place the logs on a baking sheet and continue until all of the coconut mixture is gone.  Rinse hands occasionally if they get too sticky.  Press an almond on top of each coconut log.  Press as firmly as you can. Place the baking sheet in the fridge to chill while you melt the chocolate.

Put the chocolate chips in a large glass bowl.  Microwave for 30 seconds on high.  Stir.  Continue microwaving until chocolate is melted, about 30 more seconds, pausing to stir after every 10 seconds.  Do not let burn!
Remove the coconut candies from the fridge.  Place one coconut almond log on a fork.  Use a spoon to scoop a bit of chocolate over the almond.  This will help the almond stick to the candy and not fall off during dipping.  Lower fork into chocolate and spoon chocolate over candy to coat.  Lift fork and gently shake to release some of the chocolate.  Scrape the bottom of the fork along the side of the bowl and place on the lined baking sheet.  You might need a toothpick to help get the candy off the fork. Repeat until all candy is coated in chocolate.  

Let dipped candy harden in the fridge for 45 minutes.  Store in an airtight container at room temperature.  


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