Oven Roasted Gnocchi with Sausage and Peppers

The first known use of gnocchi was in 1891.

Gnocchi is an Italian dumpling. With simple ingredients, like potato flour, water, and eggs.

This dish originates from the Northern part of Italy. Due to the colder Northern Italian climate, potatoes are easier to grow than wheat grain.

Culinary Inventors of the Dumpling

The Chinese are the culinary inventors of the dumpling. Just as long noodles represent longevity, and dumplings represent wealth and prosperity.

At family dumpling-making gatherings on the eve of the new year, a coin may be slipped into a dumpling for good luck.

The little dough balls are usually stuffed with various ingredients from chives and shrimp to pork and cabbage.

Gnocchi verses Dumplings

What is the difference between gnocchi and dumplings?

First of all, the word gnocchi in Italian means “little dumpling.”

A gnocchi is a dumpling. The difference though, is that gnocchi is not stuffed or filled with anything as other types of dumplings are.

Instead of putting a filling inside of the dough, the “filling” ingredients are mixed with the dough, and a ball is formed afterward.

Gnocchi like dumplings can either be steamed, boiled, deep-fried, pan-fried, or roasted in the oven.

Oven Roasted Gnocchi Sausage and Peppers

1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed, crumbled

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 small red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small orange bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 ounces fresh cherry tomatoes (different colors), sliced in half

One 17.5-ounce package potato gnocchi

1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving

1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped

1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed, crumbled

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 small red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small orange bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 ounces fresh cherry tomatoes (different colors), sliced in half

One 17.5-ounce package potato gnocchi

1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving

1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Toss together the oregano, red pepper flakes, garlic, bell peppers, onion, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper on a sheet pan.

Top with sausage and gently shake the pan a few times to evenly distribute.

Roast in preheated oven until the sausage is cooked through and the vegetables are soft, 18 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, toss the gnocchi with the Parmesan, remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt. 

When sausage is cooked, remove sheet pan and turn the oven to broil.

Sprinkle the gnocchi over the sausage and vegetables and place under broiler until dark golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.

Divide among 4 plates and if you wish, sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley or fresh oregano leaves and Parmesan cheese.

Why We Cook

To think about cooking as purely functional would be to look at just one aspect of it. When in fact there are several reasons why we cook.

Cooking makes food more edible and in doing so cuts down on the time it takes to digest it.

Some foods we can eat raw, but there are others that need to be cooked, like meat or eggs for example.

How To Make The Perfect Egg In One Minute

Humankind has been on the earth for thousands of years and throughout the centuries we have learned the art of cooking.

Yes cooking is an art. If you are a professional-cook or not – when you put together different flavors you are creating a dish to satisfy your taste and hunger.

Frequently Asked Questions about Healthy Cooking

The More You Know

We spend just five percent (5%) of our day eating. So make the food you eat count towards a healthier you. Read more here: First Step To Being Healthy


The bottom line is, we have learned through trial and error that some foods need to be cooked.

So again, ever thought while you are preparing something to eat, why you cook it?

Why We Cook

It makes eating food safe, as cooking destroys bacteria, and the toxins they produce.

The food flavors multiple with using heat to cook. The heat browns meat, vegetables, breads, and cakes.

Roasted Root Vegetables with Brussels sprouts and Bacon

Cooking caramelizes sugar and helps herbs and spices to release their locked in flavors in a process known as the Maillard reaction.

Read More Here About Cooking With Herbs – Spices – and Caramelizing Sugar

How To Spice Thngs Up When Cooking
Spanish Flan – recipe and video on How To Carmelize Sugar

Food that has been cooked helps with your digestion as it softens starches and releases foods nutrients.

Roasted Red Potatoes with Garlic Parmesan

Cooked food tastes delicious and brings new textures to food.

Cooking To Gather Family and Friends

You may have heard the expression, make friends by “breaking bread together.”

Research has shown that the ritual of cooking and sharing your cooked food with others is entrenched in our psyche, and it brings family and friends together.

Regularly eating cooked food with others also improves our well-being.

Cooking Supports A Healthy Life Style

Here’s a great response to why we cook.

Julia A. Wolfson, MPP, lead author of a study on home cooking and weight lossat the John Hopkins Center, says if you are trying to lose weight or not, people who cook most of their meals at home, consume fewer carbohydrates, less sugar and less fat than those who cook less or not at all (Study Suggests Home Cooking is a Main Ingredient in Healthier Diet).

According to Civil Eats – The power of a communal meal, or eating together – either it be a Thanksgiving feast, a community potluck, or a dinner-table gathering can build cultural ties and tear down political walls.

So now you know. Let’s get cooking.

Bacon and Spring Pea Risotto

Risotto is a dish that is creamy, scrumptious and filling.

The beauty of preparing risotto is that you can add just about anything you’d like.

You can use various types of vegetables, herbs, and meat. You can make with or without meat.

Risotto is a comfort food, as it is filling, and is a wonderful dish for leftovers.

Risotto can be a side dish (without meat) but it is also often consumed as a complete meal (when prepared with meat).


Pumpkin Pecan Risotto with Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese


Unlike other rice that is left in a pot of water to boil, risotto rice requires constant attention to ensure a perfectly finished dish.

The rice is not to be pre-rinsed, boiled, or drained, as washing would remove much of the starch required for a creamy texture.

When Arborio rice is cooked slowly with stock (usually chicken or vegetable stock) it allows the amylopectin starch to be released.

As a result, the rice takes on a smooth, creamy texture.

A 1/3 cup of uncooked Arborio rice (used in preparing risotto) has about 166 calories.

Bacon and Spring Pea Risotto

4 pieces bacon

1/2 yellow onion, diced

2 cups arborio rice

4 cups chicken stock, hot

1 cup frozen peas and carrots

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Zest of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

Cut bacon into small bite-sized pieces. Add to a large, deep, skillet and cook until crispy. Remove from pan to cool.

Drain most of the bacon grease, leaving about 1 Tbsp. in the pan. Add diced onions and cook on low heat until translucent.

Turn heat to medium and add uncooked rice to the pan. Stir to coat in bacon grease.

Add 1 cup hot chicken stock, reduce heat to low and stir while rice absorbs the liquid. Once it’s absorbed, add another 1 cup and repeat until all the liquid is gone and rice is tender.

This process should take about 20 minutes.

Next, add to tender rice frozen peas and carrots, lemon zest, cilantro and bacon. Mix in well.

Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve warm.

Blood Orange Upside Down Cake

The blood orange is a member of the citrus family, it is both beautiful in color and delicious in flavor.

They are in season from December through May, though the exact months vary depending on what type of blood Orange you’re baking or cooking with.

The most common variety available in markets is the the Moro variety.

Moro Blood Orange

The Moro blood orange is the most colorful of the blood oranges, with a deep red flesh and a rind with a bright red blush.

The deep red flesh means the orange ranges in color from orange veined ruby coloration, to vermilion, to vivid crimson, to nearly black.

Different Hues of the Blood Orange

The flavor is stronger and the aroma is more intense than a normal orange. The fruit has a distinct, sweet flavor with a hint of raspberry.

Are Blood Oranges Naturally Red

Author Harold McGee explains in his book “On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen” – that a blood orange owes the deep maroon color of their juice to anthocyanin pigments, which develop only when night temperatures are low, in the Mediterranean autumn and winter.”

On Food and Cooking

What are anthocyanin pigments? The pigment is found naturally in a number of eatable plants.

These pigments are what produces the red, purple, and blue coloring of eatable plants, such as the blueberry, cherry, and strawberry among others.

The anthocyanin pigments will only develop when temperatures are low at night, as during the Mediterranean fall and winter.

In addition to acting an antioxidant, anthocyanins help fight free radicals, and are found to offer anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-cancer benefits.

Nutritional Value of The Blood Orange

A fresh blood orange is a rich source of vitamins C (20% or greater of the Daily Value), a moderate source of folate (15% of the Daily Value) and dietary fiber.

The orange also has potassium, which is needed for healthy blood pressure and the absorption of zinc.

Interesting Facts About The Blood Orange

Within Europe, the arancia rossa di Sicilia, or the red orange of Sicily, has Protected Geographical Status.

According to The National Gardening Association, the flavor of blood oranges is essentially a cross between an orange and a raspberry.

garden.org

Blood Orange Upside Down Cake

This recipe is baked in a 9-inch spring form pan. But we used four, 5-inch spring form pans. Using this size is up to you, but using them makes individual small sized cakes.

Cakes this size are great for serving at gathers, tea parties, and brunch.

5-inch sized Blood Orange Upside Down Cake

• 2 sticks plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

• 2/3 cup light brown sugar

• 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

• 4 medium-sized blood oranges

• 1 cup fine cornmeal, may sub almond flour

• 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

• 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

• 1/2 teaspoon salt

• 1 cup granulated sugar

• 4 large eggs, at room temperature

• ⅓ cup sour cream

• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place a 9 inch round piece parchment paper into a 9-inch round spring form pan.

Note: If using the 5-inch spring forms – do the same and place a piece of parchment paper in the bottom of pans.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons butter. Add the brown sugar and lemon juice. Stir until sugar melts, about 3 minutes. Scrape mixture into bottom of prepared pan (pans).

Grate 1/2 teaspoon zest from one of the oranges, then slice off the tops and bottoms of oranges.

Place oranges on a clean, flat surface, and slice away the rind and pith, top to bottom, following the curve of the fruit.

Slice each orange crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick wheels and discard any seeds.

Arrange orange wheels on top of brown sugar mixture in a single, tight layer.

In a large bowl, whisk together orange zest, cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt.

In a separate bowl, cream together remaining 2 sticks butter with granulated sugar. Beat in eggs, one a time, then beat in sour cream and vanilla. Fold in the dry mixture by hand.

Scrape batter into pan (pans) over oranges. Transfer to oven and bake until cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean, 40 to 50 minutes.

Cool cake in pan 10 minutes, then run a knife along pan’s edges to loosen it. Unlock side of pan and remove.

Next, invert cake onto a platter and cool completely before serving.

Microgreens Another Source Of Great Nutrition

Microgreens are young vegetable greens that fall somewhere between sprouts and baby leaf vegetables.

Sprouts are technically the newly germinated seeds, while the microgreens are the 1-2 week-old youngster seedlings.

Sprouts grow more like a fungus, as they are provided with high humidity, an enclosed area, and a low light environment.

Whereas, microgreens grow more like a plant. It absorbs nutrients directly from the seed, soil, or nutrients added to water (if grown hypotonic) and light (photosynthesis).

Hydroponic grown microgreens
Hydroponic Grown Microgreens

Microgreens are rich in potassium, zinc, magnesium, iron, and copper – all of which are essential nutrients for the health of your body.

According to studies that have been conducted on microgreens, they contain up to 40 times more nutrients compared to their fully mature counterparts.

This means that you can get the right amounts of nutrients that you need for optimal health by just adding a few microgreens servings into your diet.

What Do Mircrogreens Taste Like

As noted above, these tiny and edible greens that grow from vegetable and herb seeds pack a nutritional punch and are absolutely delicious.

Generally speaking, microgreens have an intense aromatic flavor.

Here is a small list of the most popular microgreens grown out of over 100 varieties and their description of taste.

• Alfalfa – Mild, nutty, crunchy, pea-like taste

• Arugula – Nutty, peppery

• Broccoli – Mild, crunchy, dense, slightly bitter

• Clover – Mild earthy, nutty, crunchy, juicy

• Cress – Peppery, tangy

• Daikon Radish – Strong, Peppery

Daikon radish microgreen
Daikon Radish Microgreen

• Dun pea – Slight sweet, crunchy, robust flavor

• Kale – Mild, subtly sweet, broccoli-like taste

• Kohlrabi – Mild, sweet

• Lentils – Mild bitter, pea-like taste

• Mung bean – Mild bean taste, slight buttery

• Wheatgrass – Mild sweet, bitter, grassy

How To Use Microgreens

Apart from their nutrition, microgreens also give plated dishes visual appeal that is as a result of their delicateness and vibrancy.

Asian Pear Carrot and Daikon Radish Salad with Microgreens

Microgreens are not only important in giving your dish an appealing look, but also adds taste and texture to the plated food.

Microgreens can be used as a sandwich stuffer, with wraps, burritos, salads, soups, topped on fried or scrambled eggs, and used in smoothies among many other uses.

Pastrami Sandwich with Microgreens

Easy To Grow Year Round

The best part about growing microgreens is their ability to grow all year-round. You can grow them anywhere, whether you want to grow them indoors or in your garden.

Since you can grow them anywhere, you don’t have to wait for the right weather to set in so you can start growing them.

During summer, you can grow your microgreens anywhere as long as there is enough natural sunlight.

During the cooler seasons where sunlight hours are limited and temperatures drop below 40 degrees, you sprout the seeds in your home using a grow light to help them thrive.

Growing Microgreens Is Easy

Asian Pear Carrot and Daikon Radish Sprouts

Asian pears, also known as apple pears, are a healthy treat that present the best qualities of both the apple and pear.

The fruit is crunchy and sweet fruit that grows to be round like an apple. They do not change texture after picking or storage as do European pears such as the Bartlett or Comice.

Chilling Asian pearsChilling an Asian pear before eating can enhance the delicious flavor.

Asian Pear Health Benefits

According to OAW Health – if you have any of the following health problems, they suggest adding pears to your diet with these few noted health issues among many others:

• Acid reflux

• High cholesterol

• Gas – bloating – constipation – diarrhea

• Intestinal inflammation

• Insulin resistance

• Weight gain

What To Do With The Asian Pear

The pear is often given as a gift throughout East Asia, due to its long shelf-life and delicious flavor.

Because of its wonderful texture, you can enjoy these pears in stir-fries, as well as salads.

And how ironic, as the Asian pear is also called a “salad pear” in Japan.

Asian Pear Carrot and Daikon Radish Sprouts

1 cup daikon radish sprouts

2 cups Asian pears, washed and corded and chop into medium sized pieces

1 1/2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes chili flakes

1/8 tsp white pepper

2 1/2 tbsp raw honey

Combine vinegar, red pepper flakes, white pepper and honey – mix well until honey dissolves. Add Asian pear, daikon radish sprouts and carrot.

Mix well and set aside for flavors to meld for at least one hour.

Can be made up to a day in advance and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Serve at room temperature.

Pumpkin Pecan Risotto with Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese

Despite its appearance, risotto is not a type of rice but rather an Italian dish made with a special high-starch short-grain rice.

Which includes the Arborio, Carnaroli and the Vialone Nano rice.

The Rices Used To Make A Risotto

This special type of rice can absorb quite a bit of liquid without becoming mushy.

A basic risotto is particularly prepared with Arborio rice, bone broth, shallots, butter and salt.

Once you have the basics, you can add just about any other food that you would like.

This risotto includes dried cranberries, pecans, Parmesan cheese, nutmeg, goat cheese, and Italian parsley.

The History Of Risotto

The history of how Risotto became an Italian dish is quit simple.

The story of risotto begins in the 14th century B.C. with the Arabs bringing rice to Sicily and Spain during their rule.

Rice Fields In Northern Italy

Italy was the ideal place to grow short-grain rice due to the humid weather and abundant flat land.

Till today, the Po Valley (Italy) is one of the largest rice producers in Europe and rice is eaten extensively throughout northern Italy.

Making A Risotto Is Not Time Consuming

Making a risotto with any of the rices we noted at the start of reading this article, takes as long as cooking an Asian rice or Mexican rice.

But the difference is, it is hands on from start to finish. Which is about 20 to 25 minutes. And I will say, It is worth it.

If you prepare a risotto the right way, or in other words, follow the recipe, you will have a creamy delicious risotto.

Pumpkin Pecan Risotto with Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese

• 4 cups bone broth (or vegetable stock)

• 1 cup canned pumpkin puree

• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

• 1 shallot (minced)

• 1 teaspoon kosher salt

• 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

• 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice

• 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar red

• 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

• 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

• 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

• Fresh ground black pepper

• 1 cup crumbled goat cheese

• 1/2 cup dried cranberries

Instructions

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the stock and pumpkin over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and reduce the heat to low. Cover and keep warm.

Melt the butter in a large dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Once the foaming subsides, add the shallot and salt.

Cook until softened, 2-3 minutes. Add the thyme and rice and cook for one minute longer.

Add the white wine vinegar and a ladle of warm stock and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated. Add another ladle of stock, and continue cooking until evaporated again.

Continue cooking, adding a ladle of stock at a time, and allowing to evaporate in between each addition. Cook until the rice is done, but has a bite to it, it should be creamy in texture, and will take about 20-25 minutes.

Mix in the parmesan, half of the parsley, and nutmeg. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with the remaining parsley, goat cheese and dried cranberries. Serve immediately.

Roasted Red Potatoes with Garlic Parmesan

These roasted red potatoes with garlic parmesan are simple and fast to make. A perfect side dish to any dinner and sure to please.

They are toasted with olive oil, minced garlic, along with a little Himalayan salt and black pepper.

You can also mix dried thyme, oregano, and basil if you wish.

Once they’re done let them cool a few minutes then toss them with more grated parmesan if desired and garnish with some chopped parsley (cilantro well work as well).

The History of Red Potatoes

The Red potato was first cultivated in the mountains of Peru.

Spanish explorers brought the potato with them on returning voyages and introduced them to Europe in the 1560s.

When the potato became popular and spread across Europe, they were also carried to the new world or North America.

Why Red Potatoes Are Red

The color in red potatoes is due to anthocyanains, a common pigment which is associated with being rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.

Antioxidants make the spuds more nutritious and a diet rich in antioxidants helps to lower your risk of cancer.

The Potatoes Nutrition

You will receive the most nutritional benefits from red potatoes by eating their skin along with the white flesh.

Red potato are a good source of vitamin-C, vitamin B-6, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium.

According to Harvard Medical School, your body needs vitamin-C to form collagen, which is an essential connective-tissue protein.

Vitamin-C also helps fight infections, maintain healthy bones, and helps with iron and copper absorption.

They are also fat, sodium and cholesterol free.

These potatoes have less of a starchy texture and more of a waxy one. This makes them excellent for use in salads, soups, roasted or boiled.

They also keep their color when cooked as well as their shape. Therefore, no need to peel them.

Roasted Red Potato’s with Garlic Parmesan

1 1/2 lbs red potatoes

2 tbsp. oil

2 cloves garlic minced (1 tsp.)

½ tsp. salt or to taste

¼ tsp. freshly cracked black pepper or to taste

¼ cup. freshly grated parmesan

2 tbsp. chopped parsley for topping

Optional

1/4 tsp. oregano

1/2 tsp. thyme

1/2 tsp. basil

• Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with non stick cooking spray or line with parchment paper and set aside.

• Rinse and scrub potatoes well. Cut each potato into bite sized chunks. Use a paper towel to pat potatoes dry.

• In a large bowl, toss potatoes with the oil, minced garlic, salt, and pepper making sure they are fully coated (at this step optional to mix in other herbs).

• Spread potatoes evenly across baking sheet and bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring about halfway through.

• Remove potatoes from oven and transfer them to a plate lined with paper towels to blot off any excess oil. Allow to cool for a few minutes.

• Toss potatoes with the freshly grated parmesan cheese, garnish with parsley.

Ham Asparagus Alfredo

The name Asparagus comes from the Greek word meaning “shoot” or “sprout.”

The shoots grow from a crown planted in sandy soil and can grow 10 inches in a 24-hours under the ideal weather conditions.

There are three colors of the plant, white, purple and the most common color, green.

White – Purple – Green Asparagus

White asparagus is more delicate and difficult to harvest, and the purple variety is smaller and fruitier tasting.

Nutritional Value of Asparagus

This vegetable’s profile is one of the most nutritionally and well-balanced of most eatable vegetables.

It is high in folic acid and a good source of potassium , fiber, thiamin, and vitamins A, B6, C,E, and in smaller amounts, iron, zinc and riboflavin.

It’s an excellent source of vitamin K, an essential nutrient involved in blood clotting and bone health (Source: National Library of Medicine).

Asparagus contains high amounts of flavonoids, and these plant chemicals have been found to help lower blood pressure.

Research suggests that increasing potassium intake while reducing salt intake is an effective way to lower high blood pressure.

And that’s good reason for you to prepare a plate of Ham Asparagus Alfredo.

1 lb. jumbo asparagus, ends trimmed

2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup heavy cream

3 oz. cream cheese, room temperature

1/3 cup shredded mozzarella

1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1/4 tsp. Himalayan salt

Freshly ground black pepper

8 ounce cooked ham, chopped or 4 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled

Grated Parmesan, for serving

Using a julienne peeler, peel asparagus into long, thin strips by holding the asparagus by its tip to keep it steady while peeling.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Next add heavy cream and cream cheese and cook until cream cheese is completely melted.

Next add mozzarella, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened, about 2 minutes.

Place another large skillet over medium heat and heat remaining tablespoon of oil.

Next add asparagus noodles and cook until tender, about 3 to 4 minutes.

Using tongs, plate asparagus (between 3-4 plates) and spoon Alfredo sauce over top.

Serve topped with cooked ham and Parmesan cheese.

Coconut Pecan Sugar Cookies

Originally, cookies had one purpose in the kitchen as bakers used them to test the oven by baking small amounts of cake batter before baking an entire cake.

Since then, these “small cakes” have evolved and now hundreds of recipes for cookies are available today – which includes the Sugar Cookie.

The Sugar Cookie made its debut in the 1700’s by German settlers to Pennsylvania (USA) and the cookies were an instant success.

Since that time, sugar cookies have become popular at Christmas and Halloween time and including Arbor Day and Groundhog Day in the U.S.

GROUNDHOG DAY COOKIES – Photo Credit: Fork and Beans

Sugar cookie dough is easy to work with (usually just 3 or 4 ingredients) as the dough holds its shape during the baking process. It is also a great cookie recipe to work with because it contains no baking soda.

Although they are frequently eaten straight from the oven, the sugar cookie can be frosted, sprinkled, and cut into any shape for added eating fun.

Though sugar cookies are about 2 to 3 round, you can also make them bite sized.

And that is what we did with this recipe, Coconut Pecan Sugar Cookies – sandwich style. They are topped with pecan bits and powdered sugar. And between the two cookies are shredded coconut, Heath bar bits and sweet milk.

Making Coconut Pecan Sugar Cookies

You will need:

1 (17 ½ oz.) sugar cookie mix
1 cup shredded coconut 1/4 cup Heath bar bites
1/2 cup pecan halves, finely chopped
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 egg
1 can 14 oz. sweetened condensed milk

In a large bowl add the cookie mix, butter and egg. Mix until dough thickens.

On a floured surface with a roller spread dough to ¼ inch thick.

Cut out cookies with a cookie mold – about 1 to 2 inches in diameter.

Place cookies on non-stick cookie sheet 2 inches apart.

Next mix coconut and Heath bar bites with sweet milk and set aside.

Bake 7 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Let cool one minute on cookie sheet then remove to a wire rack until they cool completely.

To assemble the sandwiches smear 1 tsp. of coconut – sweet milk mix onto 12 cookies. On the other 12 cookies dab a little sweet milk, and then put cookies together forming a sandwich.

Top cookies with chopped pecan pieces and top that with powdered sugar. Store cookies in an air tight container.

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