Like most former Girl Scouts or Brownies, Siri Daly has positive memories of selling her favorite cookies — and mixed feelings about those stiff uniforms.
Today, as a mother of three and “Today” show food contributor, Daly writes a popular blog, Siriously Delicious, that features a mix of what she calls Siriously Nutritious and Siriously Not Nutritious meals, snacks and treats organized with the busy home cook in mind.
But it’s her debut cookbook that you’ll want to get your hands on. In “Siriously Delicious: 100 Nutritious (and Not So Nutritious) Simple Recipes for the Real Home Cook” (Oxmoor, $27), Daly — who is married to “The Voice” host and “Today” show contributor Carson Daly — shares recipes for her favorite Girl Scout cookies, so you can make them at home long after the budding entrepreneurs have left grocery storefronts.
Specifically, we’re talking about her recipe for Samoas or Caramel deLites, which Daly makes using store-bought caramel candies, gobs of sweet shredded coconut and a touch of almond extract, and her version of Tagalongs, a creamy peanut butter-filled crisp shortbread perfectly cloaked in a mixture of milk and dark chocolates.
The cookbook, which hit shelves in April, features 100 easy-to-follow recipes with hearty ingredients from Daly’s Midwestern upbringing, like hash brown egg cups and creamy chicken tortilla soup, as well as modern takes on the comfort food trend, like caramelized Brussels sprouts grilled cheese, Buffalo-baked cauliflower and Greek nachos.
But it’s the treats we keep coming back to. Here’s hoping Daly plans to include Thin Mints in her follow-up cookbook. We can practically feel that scratchy uniform now.
Samoa CookiesMakes 42Ingredients
Cookies:1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup powdered sugar½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon almond extract2 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon table saltCoconut-caramel topping:
2½ cups sweetened shredded coconut
12 ounces store-bought caramel candies
2 tablespoons whole milkPinch of table salt
Chocolate coating:6 ounces milk chocolate baking bar, chopped
6 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate baking bar, chopped
1 teaspoon vegetable oilINSTRUCTIONs
Heat the oven to 300 degrees.Make the cookies: Beat the butter and powdered sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add the vanilla and almond extracts, and beat until combined.
Sift together the flour and salt in a separate bowl. Slowly add the sifted ingredients to the butter mixture, beating on low speed until combined. Shape the dough into a disk; wrap in plastic wrap, and chill 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the topping: Spread the coconut on a baking sheet. Bake until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. (Be careful, as coconut burns easily.) Set aside. Increase the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
Unwrap the chilled dough disk, and roll it out on a lightly floured surface to a ¼-inch thickness. Cut the dough, using a floured 2-inch round cutter. Using the tip of a sharp knife, cut out a ¾-inch circle in the center of each cookie, reserving the cutouts for scraps. (I use the small round tip of a pastry tube to cut out the inner circle.) Reroll the scraps as necessary. Place the cookies, 1 inch apart, on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.
Bake until the edges begin to slightly brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool the cookies on the pans for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks and let cool completely, about 20 minutes.
For the coconut-caramel topping, place the caramels, milk and salt in a saucepan over low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth. Stir in the toasted coconut and remove from the heat.
Spread the topping over the top of each cooled cookie. (I found the easiest method is to cover the entire cookie, and then stick the tip of my knife through the hole to remove the topping in the center.) Let stand until the topping is set, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the chocolate coating: Pour water to a depth of 1 inch into the bottom of a double boiler over medium heat; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer; place the chocolate in the top of the double boiler (or place a heatproof bowl over simmering water, making sure the water does not touch the bowl), and stir until melted. Add the vegetable oil, and stir until you have a glossy chocolate sauce. Remove from the heat.
Dip the bottoms of the caramel-covered cookies into the chocolate coating by holding each cookie between your thumb and pointer finger. Place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.
Place the remaining chocolate coating in a piping bag, a zip-lock plastic bag with the corner snipped off, or a plastic condiment squeeze bottle. Drizzle the chocolate over the top of each cookie. Chill the cookies until firm and set, about 15 minutes.
— From “Siriously Delicious” by Siri Daly
Contact Jessica Yadegaran at email@example.com.