These are obscene. Like completely obscene. They are the softest, chewiest coconut chocolate chip cookies. (great as is). Then…. You shove them full of caramel corn…oh wait! Not just any normal caramel corn, but MOOSE MUNCH. Moose Munch is part caramel corn, part chocolate covered caramel corn, as well as caramel covered almonds and coconut shavings. This whole concoction is like me in a cookie.
It is completely inspired by the delectable treat Moose Munch, made by Harry and David. I had never even heard of Moose Munch until a few weeks ago when I took a little trip to Medford Oregon to the Harry and David Headquarters. I had grown up knowing about Harry and David because my mom was crazy for their gorgeous Royal Riviera pears (that are their signature.) She also had a major thing for all those little applets and cottlets and little gelles. She still loves those things. And then for our fourth anniversary (which is the fruits anniversary) I was kind of lost- I mean fruit?? Pete was trying really hard to be healthy and was making a conscience effort to eat more fruit and vegetables so I thought maybe I could do something like that? I wound up buying Pete a fruit of the month package from Harry and David. And even though “fruit of the month” makes me giggle, each delivery that I had sent to his office was completely gorgeous. And it wound up being a thoughtful and practical gift.
So, you know how I can ramble, the point is that when I was invited down to see the inner workings of the Harry and David operation, I was excited! I got to go down with a bunch of lovely ladies and we had a couple days of festivities. I joined Dorothy, Tracy, Jackie and Kathy at Sandy’s beautiful house for lunch on our first day. True to her reputation, Sandy is the most delightful hostess and served up lunch at the cutest table ever
We got to go to the Pear orchards and while we missed full bloom by a couple of days, the trees were still beautiful and there were still patches of blossoms here and there. I was shocked at how many pear orchards there were. They also told us that in peak picking season that they are harvesting 750 tons of pears a day. Um, that is crazy. Especially when you see how pristine these pears are- they are like PEREFCT.
We then had a great time guzzling cocktails and eating an incredible meal at the aptly named The Alchemy Restaurant in Downtown Ashland.
Early the next morning we were up and ready to spend a full day learning about what goes on in the magical kitchens at Harry and David! I was so excited when we got the chance to make our own Easter chocolates in the lab- (this is Tracy and I dressing the part).
I totally channeled my inner artist. I love stuff like this. I made little dogwood blossoms.
These were some of the gorgeous chocolates that their in-house chocolatier Charlie made.
We then got to take incredible tours of all of their facilities. I thought that the fact that 80% of everything that Harry and David sells they make, bake or grow was pretty incredible. We even watched some of the Moose Munch being made. Harry and David has a ton of varieties and they make over 5 million pounds a year of the stuff. If you tasted it you would not be surprised. Since I am majorly obsessed with caramel corn- this was a highlight for me. We also packed baskets (and I am surprisingly good at it!) and tower boxes (which I am surprisingly terrible at!).
We closed the night with an insane dinner by Harry and Davids executive Chef at a local vineyard, Dancin. I could not even keep up with how much wine was being poured, and I think you know me well enough by now to know that that is saying something. It was a wonderful evening.
The next day we did a fun tour of one Rising Sun Farms which supplies to Harry and David. It was absolutely stunning there.
And then after a Moose Munch Binge Buy at the Harry and David Store I was off as quickly as I came. Only a few days after I came home, I was still thinking about that Moose Munch. And when a big box of assorted varieties showed up at my door, I seriously chowed down. But this last weekend as I was staring at my dwindeling supply, I stared down at one of the flavors: Dark Chocolate Coconut Macaroon and it felt obvious that I, being a coconut freak, was going to have to put that moose munch into something else. Cookies Won.
By the way, Harry and David did treat me for a couple of days, but these are all of my opinions and self imposed Moose Munch obsessions…
Recipe: Chocolate Macaroon Moose Munch Cookies
- 1 cup butter
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup packed sweetened shredded coconut
- 2 ¼ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 10 ounces semi sweet chocolate chips
- 1 10 ounce bag Dark Chocolate Coconut Macaroon Moose Munch
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two sheet pans with silpats or parchment.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy.
- Add the vanilla and one egg at a time and then the coconut and beat until well combined.
- In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda and kosher salt and then add to the bowl. Beat until you have a smooth cookie dough.
- Add the chocolate chips and combine well. Add in 2 cups (reserving the third cup) of the moose munch and stir just a few times to gently mix in the caramel corn.
- Scoop generously sized cookies (I used a 2” scoop) out onto the sheetpans. Use a few pieces of the reserved moose munch to squish into the top of each cookie, also making the dough ball a little flatter.
- Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes. Remove and let cool for a minute before transferring to a cooling rack or counter top. Repeat the baking until all of your dough is gone. Enjoy!
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 12 minute(s)
*You could also use my Coconut Caramel Corn in place of the Coconut Moose Munch.