orange coconut squares ronit penso

Orange Coconut Chocolate Squares

orange coconut squares ronit pensoOrange flavored dough + coconut meringue topping + bits of dark chocolate chips in the middle = perfect combination.
The original recipe (got it from my aunt, so not sure who first created it, therefore no credit) called for twice the amount of butter and sugar and six eggs instead of four. It was quite nice, but still too sweet and heavy for my taste.
So I’ve decided to try and see if I can make a lighter version of it. I also decided to add a bit of chocolate in the middle, as chocolate works great with both orange and coconut.
In my humble opinion, the following version is quite a success and works even better than the original. Try it and see for yourselves!

* Make sure the mixer bowl is clean of any fat, otherwise the meringue will not form.

Makes: 12-16 squares (depending how big you want them…)
Prep time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 35 minutes
Ingredients:
For the dough:
1 stick (115 grams) butter, very soft
4 egg yolks, at room temperature
½ cup sugar
¼ cup (4 Tbs) orange juice
1 tsp orange zest
1 ¾ cup flour
1 Tbs baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/3 cup mini dark chocolate chips
For the coconut layer
4 egg whites, at room temperature
¼ tsp vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup sugar
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

1. Preheat the oven to 340F (170C). Line an 8”x12”(20cm x 30cm) cake pan with baking paper.
2. The dough: place the butter, egg yolks and sugar in a medium size bowl. Whisk to a smooth cream. Add the orange juice and zest and mix again. The mixture will seem “broken”, but it’s fine. Add the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix with a spatula, to form soft dough. Put the dough in the pan, and press gently your palm, to spread the dough evenly in the pan. Scatter the chocolate chips on top.
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P10106153. The coconut layer: place the egg whites, vinegar and vanilla in a mixer bowl. Whisk on medium-high speed until large bubbles start to form. Add the sugar, gradually, and keep whisking to a firm and shiny meringue. Lower the speed to low and add the coconut and mix briefly. Spread evenly over the dough.

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4. Bake for 35 minutes, until the meringue is golden and the dough baked through. Let cool to room temperature in the pan. Transfer to a cutting board, trim the edges and cut into squares with a large knife.

P1010635P1010636Orange Coconut Chocolate Squares Ronit Penso

16 thoughts on “Orange Coconut Chocolate Squares

    • Tasty Eats Ronit Penso says:

      Thank you! I’m glad to know the photos help. It’s not always easy to take them while cooking, as I’m sure you know :-)

      Like

  1. giti says:

    Wow, this cake reminds me of a cake my mom used to make. I think it had lemon flavor, but I don’t remember exactly. The piece on top is so tempting – makes you want to eat it in one bite!

    Like

    • Tasty Eats Ronit Penso says:

      I’m glad you liked it and that it brought back good memories.
      it’s an old-fashioned cake so I guess it had many versions.
      Lemon sounds good, I think I’ll give it a try next time I’ll make it. :-)

      Like

    • Tasty Eats Ronit Penso says:

      Thanks! I grew up in Israel, among immigrants from all over the world, including South Africa. So who knows, maybe that was the source…
      I don’t recall a version with apricot jam, but it sounds great.
      I’ll give it a try, maybe even combined with with the chocolate. I liked the slight bitterness it brings as a contrast to the sweetness of the cake.

      Like

    • Tasty Eats Ronit Penso says:

      Thanks for the link. It looks great. I loved the story behind the name.
      I definitely will give it a try, maybe create my own chocolate version… :-)

      Like

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