For my variation on the classic tortica de Moron cookie from Cuba I kneaded some toasted coconut through the dough and added a dash of rum. Rum is said to have been first distilled on the island in the seventeenth century. First from molasses – a byproduct of the sugar cane plantations – and later from cane juice. It is still the national drink of Cuba and a welcome ingredient in cocktails like the mojito. I formed the dough into small rolls and tried to bake small cigars with a tip of desiccated coconut. The result is perhaps not entirely convincing cigar-ish but this cookie is very crunchy and buttery and you can taste just a hint of rum.
Coconut rum cookie from Cuba
for about 30 cookies
220 grams (2 sticks) butter
200 grams (1 cup) sugar
1 large egg, separated
310 grams (2½ cups) flour
100 grams (1 cup) desiccated coconut
pinch of salt
grated rind of 1 lime
1 tablespoon rum
1 tsp vanilla extract or the seeds of 1 vanilla bean
Beat the butter and sugar with a mixer until light and creamy.
Add the egg yolk and beat well.
Add the flour, the coconut, salt, the lime rind and the rum.
Bring together into a soft dough.
Divide the dough in pieces of 25 grams (1 heaped tbs) and form little rolls of about 5 cm (2 inches) long. Leave in the fridge for about 1 hour to become firm.
Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F.
Place the cookies on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Sprinkle some coconut on one end and bake for 12-15 min. until done.
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