Sunday, December 27, 2009

Coconut Chocolate Covered Cherries

I really enjoy these coconut chocolate covered cherries! So much that I just make them at Christmas. I  do recommend chilling the coconut mixture for at least 30 minutes or more before wrapping it around the cherries, for easier handling. I usually buy an extra jar of maraschino
cherries to replace the cherries that loose the stems. I have added this recipe to my favorite   
  Christmas candy list

Coconut Chocolate Covered Cherries
1/2 cup butter, softened
3-3/4 cups confectioners sugar
½ cup condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract ( I added this ingredient)
2 cups flaked coconut
2 cups finely chopped walnuts
2 jars (16 ounces each) maraschino cherries with stems, well drained and patted dry
2 packages (11-1/2 ounces each) milk chococlate chips
1 tablespoon shortening

~ In a large bowl, beat butter and confectioners; sugar until well blended and smooth.
~ Gradually beat in milk and vanilla until thoroughly mixed and mixture is well blended and creamy.
~ Fold in coconut and walnuts. I found that chilling the coconut mixture for about 30 minutes or more, makes wrapping it around the cherries much easier.
~ Rub a little butter on your hands, shape 2 teaspoonfuls of coconut mixture around each cherry, Forming a ball. I used two level measuring teaspoons so the covered cherries are uniform in shape.
~ Place on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet.
~ Cover and refrigerate for 1 at least hour or overnight.
~ Melt chocolate chips and shortening in a double boiler until all chips are melted and mixture is smooth.
~ Dip chilled coconut coated cherries into chocolate.
~ Place on waxed paper; let stand until set.
~ Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
~ They will keep for about one month, But never last that lond at my house.
~ Yield: about 5 dozen.

Recipe Source: Taste of Home

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