Samoa Bars are reminiscent of the popular Girl Scout Cookie. Crisp, buttery shortbread, smothered with a thin layer of dreamy salted coconut caramel, then topped with rich dark chocolate and toasted coconut.
The annual Girl Scout cookie season is something that my family and I look forward to every year. Being that I live in a house full of males, I rely on the kindness of little strangers that come to my doorstep to fulfill our Girl Scout cookie needs. Come January each year, I practically leap to answer the doorbell every time it rings, hoping that a cute little Brownie or Girl Scout will be on the other side, cookie order form in hand. Then we wait in anticipation for weeks until the cookies are delivered.
If you’re anything like me, those little boxes of cookies don’t last but a few days after arrival. The Samoas are always the first to go. Those crunchy, caramel and coconut wonders are my family’s favorite Girl Scout cookie. With only fifteen cookies per box and six people in my family, an open box is an empty box. It’s tragic, really. We get all amped up for the cookies to arrive, only to have the box of our favorites meet its demise in one fell swoop. Thus begins the waiting for next year’s cookie season.
Right about the time that Girl Scout cookies were being delivered this year, I was working on a distinctly different caramel recipe. It uses coconut milk rather than heavy cream. I’m not sure why I feel compelled to experiment with such quirky ideas, but compelled I am. Suffice it to say that once an idea strikes, I have no choice other than to follow through with it, lest I lose sleep at night pondering the possibilities. After a few trial runs, I refined a salted coconut caramel recipe that resulted in something I think is pretty fantastic. Now the only real question left was what to do with it? Pouring salted coconut caramel over ice cream or a warm brownie is an obvious, though tasty solution.
I was nearly settled on the obvious route when another idea struck me – Samoa Bars!
My shortbread cookie recipe is perfect, so why not slather it with the salted coconut caramel and chocolate? I couldn’t think of one thing that could be bad about that arrangement. Besides, if I could master Samoa Bars, we’d no longer be forced to endure the agonizing wait until the next Girl Scout cookie season.
That’s the sort of thing that keeps me up at night, Friends. I’m not a patient person when it comes to cookies.
Samoa Bars were on! Although this recipe is comprised of three distinct layering components, the steps are straight forward enough that the bar cookies come together fairly easy. The salted coconut caramel can be made a few days ahead of time, enabling the cookies to be assembled in less time on baking day. Simply press the shortbread dough into a foil lined baking pan, bake it until the edges are golden, score it, and let it cool.
Once the shortbread has completely cooled, spread the caramel over top, drizzle with melted chocolate, and sprinkle toasted coconut over all. Give the cookie layers a little time to get acquainted while the chocolate sets, and then they’re ready to be cut into bars for serving.
Homemade Samoa Bars are a sweet way to satisfy a Girl Scout cookie craving any time of year.
What’s your favorite Girl Scout cookie, Friends?