I like making this kind of cookie because during a busy work week, you can split the making of it into two manageable stages. The first is to simply make the dough which is super easy to do, given the short list of ingredients. The dough is also very easy to work with and shape into logs since it's not too soft or sticky. Simple roll it into logs, wrap in waxed paper, place in freezer bags and chill in the refrigerator overnight or put in the freezer until you're ready to bake it. If you put it in the freezer, let it thaw for about 20-30 minutes first before you slice it or else the dough will be too hard and may not slice cleanly (I discovered that firsthand).
The important thing with shortbread is to bake it long enough. For once I don't advocate underbaking. You want to fully bake it so it'll have that nice snap when it's cool. With such a high butter content, it's harder to overbake shortbread, although it certainly is possible. I liked these cookies; they reminded me of Pepperidge Farm cookies with their buttery taste and crisp snap. The coconut is a nice touch but it isn't a very strong coconut taste so even non-coconut lovers may enjoy this.
2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, room temperature
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Spread the coconut evenly on a cookie sheet, place in oven and bake until just golden, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
2. Place the butter, coconut, and sugars in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the flour and salt, beat well and scrape again. Form the dough into a 1 ½”-diameter log and cover with parchment paper. Place the log in a resealable plastic bag and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 2 days or freeze up to 2 months.
3. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.