Wandering through Cathy's (Wives with Knives) Pinterest boards recently, I came across this recipe for Cocada. Coconut and condensed milk? O.M.G. Cathy's link sent me to Scarletta Bakes , Meagan's lovely blog featuring Southwest cooking. You'll enjoy checking it out. (She also posted step by step photos for making this bark.)
This recipe is candy, pure and simple. Ridiculously easy to make as well. I haven't made candy since the kids were little...fudge, lollipops etc. So this was a fun experiment and it comes with three bench notes:
- you must make it in the size pan described
- you must line the entire pan (including sides) with parchment paper
- and you must wait 2 hours after baking before cutting with an oiled knife
Cocada (Coconut Bark)
From Scarletta Bakes via Cathy from Wives with Knives
2-14 oz. cans sweetened, condensed milk (approximately 3 1/2 cups)
1-14 oz. bag of sweetened, flaked coconut (approximately 5 1/2 cups)
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1 tbsp. honey
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350°.
Line an 11” x 17” baking sheet with parchment paper. This step, for this recipe, is not optional: baked cocada will stick to anything other than parchment (foil, a greased baking sheet, etc.) and you will not be able to remove it post-baking. The parchment paper should completely cover the bottom and sides of the baking sheet. Set the lined pan aside.
In a large mixing bowl, stir the sweetened, condensed milk, honey, corn syrup and vanilla together until well-blended. Fold in the coconut and mix by hand until coconut is uniformly distributed throughout the milk mixture.
Spread the coconut and milk mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Using a rubber scraper, push the mixture evenly across and into the corners of the pan. Bake for 25-28 minutes. The cocada will bubble as it bakes and turn a deep golden brown, with the edges becoming especially dark – it is done baking when the top appears golden throughout.
Allow the cocada to cool and set for at least two hours. Using a sharp, lightly oiled knife, slice the cocada into squares, carefully remove each piece from the parchment lining, and enjoy straight away or store in an airtight container.