Makes about 30 snowballs, plus a few taste tests
The Christmas season officially starts in our house on the first Saturday in December. On that night we make these melt-in-your-mouth desserts, decorate the tree, and hold our Christmas-tree sleepover. We turn off all the lights except for those sparkling on the tree, slip under the covers, and make up fairy tales about our favorite ornaments. If you're short on time, skip the toasting step to make the fluffy white snowballs.
1 package (7 ounces) shredded sweetened coconut, toasted (see note)
1 angel food cake, about 10 ounces
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
About 3/4 cup milk or heavy cream, divided
Ground cinnamon for sprinkling
Fill a shallow bowl with 1 cup of the coconut. Let your kids break or pull the cake apart into chunks the size of large marshmallows.
Place the confectioner's sugar in a bowl. Add the vanilla and 1/2 cup milk and stir to combine. Stir in more milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the icing is smooth and moderately runny.
Using a fork, pierce a chunk of cake and dip it into the frosting. Hold the chunk above the bowl, and use a spoon to coat any unfrosted surfaces. Don't let it get too soggy. Pat or roll the chunk in coconut, then place it on waxed paper and sprinkle with cinnamon. Repeat with the other chunks, refilling the bowl with coconut as needed. Let the snowballs set for 20 minutes before serving. They are best eaten the day they are made.
To toast coconut:
Preheat an oven to 325 degrees F. Spread the coconut on a baking sheet. Bake, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes.
Proceed as directed using untoasted coconut. Flavor the icing with 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Sprinkle with red sugar crystals instead of ground cinnamon.
Recipes and Crafts for the Whole Family
A Holiday Celebration Book
By Sara Perry
96 pages with color photographs throughout
Recipe reprinted by permission.
Created 1999. Modified August 2007
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