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Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix coconut, cornstarch, sugar, egg whites and vanilla in heatproof bowl (or a double boiler). Set the bowl over a pot of boiling water. Heat for 4 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and set aside.
Spoon out the coconut mixture by the tablespoonful onto an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake for about 15 minutes or until lightly golden but still soft. Remove immediately to a wire rack to cool.
Place chocolate and shortening in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute and 15 seconds. Stir until smooth, microwaving in 15-second increments if needed.
Place one cookie on a fork and gently press 1 to 2 almonds on top, so they adhere to the cookie. Holding the fork over the bowl of chocolate, carefully spoon chocolate over the top, allowing excess to drip back into bowl. Place cookie on a rack over a wax-paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining cookies. Place the rack in the refrigerator for until chocolate is set, at least 20 minutes.