Welcome to the very sweet union of the macaroon and the candy bar. These coconut bites are essentially no-bake cookies (save for roasting the almonds). The coconut is sweet and crunchy, and the melted chocolate is the little bit of glue needed to hold the almond in place. Such good bites! It’s impossible to eat just one.
1. Put a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and toast them until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and salt. Stir in the coconut. The mixture will be thick. Put the mixture in the freezer for 30 minutes.
3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the coconut mixture from the freezer. Scoop up 1 heaping teaspoon of the mixture, roll it into a ball in your hands, and put it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Rinse your hands if they get too sticky. Press your pinkie finger into each ball, creating a small indentation. Don’t worry if the bites crack, just press them back together. Chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
4. Put a medium pot filled with 2 inches of water over medium heat. Bring the water to a simmer. Put the chocolate in a heat-proof bowl and put the bowl over the simmering water. Stir the chocolate until melted. Remove the pan from the heat, but keep the bowl over the hot water.
5. Remove the bites from the fridge. Dollop about 1/2 teaspoon of melted chocolate into the center of each bite. Top with a roasted almond. You can also drizzle them with a bit of chocolate. Let cool for about 1 hour. (Refrigerate to speed the hardening process along.) Store in an airtight container, with parchment or wax paper between the layers, at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
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Reprinted from the book Joy the Baker Homemade Decadence by Joy Wilson. Copyright ©2014 by Joy the Baker. Photographs copyright ©2014 by Joy Wilson and Jon Melendez. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.