So my husband pointed out that these are not east-african-indian at all, and while he is right, I explained to him that every time I made this, I always get asked for the recipe, so I guess some don’t know about this really easy to make and transport goody!
These also go by the name Magic Bars, similar recipes are usually found on the back of sweetened condensed milk cans.
For a variation of these, you may use different flavored chocolate chips. I once used white chocolate chips and little chunks of dried mango to add an indian flair to them. Turned out awesome, just saying!
Exact measurements are not really necessary, the below are a basic guideline, if you add/subtract some, won’t make a difference!
Recipe: Chewy Coconut Bars
Servings: Makes 16 pieces
- 1 1/2 graham cracker crumbs*
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup sweetened dessicated coconut
- 3/4 cup unsalted chopped nuts (preferably walnuts)
- 300ml sweetened condensed milk
- 1/4 cup chopped dried fruit, optional
*Graham cracker crumbs can be substituted with any plain cookie/biscuit, just grind them using a food processor. Great way to use stale cookies (lol!)
- two 8-inch round pans or one 9×11 baking sheet
- parchment paper/foil
- Grease the pans well and line the pans with parchment paper. If using foil, grease on the foil and allow for an overhang so that you can easily lift the bars from the pan. Since these are chewy, they tend to be sticky too, so grease well.
- Pre-heat oven to 350°C.
- Melt butter and mix into the graham crust.
- Divide the crust between the two pans and press firmly with the bottom of a smooth bowl/glass to compact the crumbs.
- Divide the sweetened condensed milk into two and pour each half into the pans, ensuring that the entire surface is covered with the milk.
- Divide the coconut into two and spread each half on each of the pans.
- Sprinkle 1/2 cup of chocolate chips between the two pans.
- Sprinkle the nuts and dried fruit (if using) between the two pans.
- Using the back of a smooth bowl/glass gently press on the mixture to make the coconut sink into the sweet milk.
- Bake in center rack for 20 minutes till the sweetened milk is bubbly and the surface is golden brown. If you’d like, turn up the oven to broil setting and broil for 2-3 minutes to get the top extra chewy and brown.
- Once done, allow to cool completely before cutting. Place in freezer if you want to speed things up.
- Once cool, remove and cut each round into 8.
- Melt the remaining 1/4 cup of chocolate chips, place in a Ziploc bag, snip the end and use it to drizzle chocolate on the cut pieces for a finished look.