Tropical Coconut Almond Cookies

Are you all ready for summer?  I know I am.  It’s not quite here though.  So I am making do with these little cookies that have flavors reminiscent of a tiki cocktail, and are basically a mashup of macaroons and macarons.  I’m not a big fan of either of those, I usually find them too sweet for my tastes.  So I reduced the sugar as much as I could, swapped out sweet coconut (which is in macaroons) for unsweetened, and punched up the flavor with lime zest and freeze dried pineapple.  And these cookies stay wonderfully soft with the almond meal (featured in macarons).  If you turn the heat up to 80 degrees, close your eyes and take a bite, you can almost believe summer is here.  And did I mention these little gems are naturally gluten-free and dairy free?

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Pina Colada Cake

National Pina Colada Day is July 10th, and you can have your drink and eat it too.  Nothing says summertime like a tiki cocktail, and when you turn those flavors into a boozy cake, it is pretty much a guaranteed baking win.  This cake is packed full of coconut and pineapple in various forms and has rum in the cake, frosting and layering components.  The perfect balance of creaminess, fruitiness and rum-ness.  Hello summer!

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Coconut Lime Pie

This month is all about the citrus juicer, and that makes me pretty happy.  I love using citrus in baking because it adds an often needed balance to all the sugar and butter that go along with making desserts.  This pie is a bit of a spin-off from a key lime pie.  I love key lime pie, but have you ever juiced enough of those tiny limes to make several pies?  I have.  I made key lime pie for 40 people once and it took forever to get enough fresh juice out of those little suckers.  So I decided to create a pie using regular limes (which are more acidic than key limes) and add in some coconut to balance that extra tartness.

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