Caramel Coconut Cluster Bars

Last week’s recipe was for a delicious sounding Caramel Coconut Cluster Bars. I am crazy for coconut, so I was really looking forward to making this recipe. I was a little intimidated too, since I don’t have a candy thermometer so I was planning on winging it a bit. Luckily I was putting these together a week after the post date, so I benefited the experience of the other bloggers. Toasting coconut was very easy, and made my house smell like heaven. The shortbread layer was also very easy to put together and bake. After letting it cool for awhile, I began the making the caramel layer while eating small handfuls of toasted coconut. I cooked the corn syrup and sugars together for 8 minutes, and because I had no idea if it had reached the correct temperature or not, I added the rest of the ingredients, and then let that sit for awhile. I brought it to a boil, waited an additional 5 minutes, before adding the coconut. The mixture was very watery, which worried me a bit, and was also a lot blonder than I was expecting it to be. I went ahead and poured it over the shortbread, hoping that its time in the fridge would help it set up. My worries were unfounded, because after a two hour wait, and some time in the fridge, these came out amazingly well. The parchment made it a cinch to get out of the pan, and the shortbread was the perfect consistency to cut cleanly without crumbling. I decided that dunking them in chocolate, while probably delicious, would probably cause all of the coconut to fall off, so I just drizzled some melted chocolate on top. The caramel layer was very similar to a pecan pie filling, only with loads of toasted coconut instead of pecans. The shortbread has such a delightfully buttery crunch. I would definitely make these again.
Baked Sunday Mornings

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