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KJ's cookie bars

Recipe from Kari-Jo Coll of Hawaii

1/2 Cup Butter, unsalted softened

2 Cups Graham cracker crumbs, boxed works best

1(14 oz)Can Milk, sweetened condensed

1 Cup Chocolate chips, milk chocolate 1

-1/2 Cups Coconut, flaked

1 Cup Walnuts, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Toast the walnuts in the 350° oven. Place walnuts in a single layer on cookie sheet or shallow pan. Bake, stirring once or twice, until lightly browned, approximately 8-10 minutes. Don't burn! Cool completely.

3. Line a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, lightly butter the bottom and sides of the foil. I use two disposable foil square pans that I buy at the store when I give the cookie bars away. You don't have to line the foil pans with extra foil. Just use them as they are, but butter them first.

4. Melt the stick of butter in a large mixing boil in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove.

5. Add the graham cracker crumbs to the melted butter in the mixing bowl. Stir until completely mixed. Let cool before adding other ingredients. Warm mixture melts the chocolate chips.

6. Add the sweetened condensed milk, mix well.

7. Add the chocolate chips, completely cooled walnuts, and coconut separately. Mix well after each addition.

8. Press mixture completely into prepared pan/s. Using plastic wrap to press the mixture into the pan makes it easy. (I use a plastic rice scoop, which works great!)

9. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden brown. Don't let sides burn.

10. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Cool completely while still in pan.

11. Once cool, cut into bars/squares. Makes 32 to 48 bars/squares. Keep in pan.

12. For best taste and consistency, chill in refrigerator, until completely set, usually 3-4 hours or overnight. Chilling does make the difference and they taste best after they have been chilled.

13. Once chilled, remove from pan and foil. Pieces of foil may need to be removed, but baking in pan without foil is difficult to remove without breaking the bars, unless you use the foil pans. Best stored in refrigerator.

Suggestions:

1. Older sweetened condensed milk is darker which makes the bars darker, use a new can for best results.

2. Semi-sweet chocolate chips can also be used; full 12-ounce package can be used, if you want a more chocolate taste.

3. You can use fat free sweetened condensed milk and fat free graham crackers (to make the crumbs), for a less fattening dessert.

4. I use a kitchen timer so I don't burn everything!

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