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Ginger Mason, one of the two friendly people manning the reception desk at our corporate headquarters here in Vermont, was recently lamenting the fact that she'd finished up her favorite Girl Scout cookies. We developed this recipe in her honor.
1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) butter
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 3/4 cups toasted shredded coconut (1/4 cup reserved for topping)
1 cup (4 to 5 ounces) caramel, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
3/4 cup chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, or chocolate chips
In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, vanilla and egg. Mix in the flour, salt, baking powder, and 1 1/2 cups of the coconut.
Spread the mixture in an ungreased 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 15 minutes. Sprinkle the caramel over the crust and return it to the oven for 10 to 12 minutes; when done it'll be medium-brown and the caramel melted and bubbling.
Remove the crust from the oven, and sprinkle it with the chocolate. Allow the chocolate to soften for about 5 minutes, then spread it evenly atop the crust. Sprinkle the reserved coconut over the top. Set aside to cool completely.
Loosen the edges of the crust with a knife, then cut it into bars. Use a flexible spatula to lift the cooled bars from the pan. Yield: about 24 bars.