My mom made these for my sister's wedding a couple of years ago and they were a huge hit! They're great with or without the chocolate, but you know I'll always choose to add chocolate :)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two large trays with parchment paper or a silpat liner and set aside.
In a large bowl, stir together the flour, coconut and salt. Stir in the sweetened condensed milk (and vanilla if desired) using your hands until completely combined. Do not overmix. Use an ice cream scoop get about golf ball sized cookies. Place cookies on the prepared sheet pans.
Bake for 11 to 14 minutes or until coconut is lightly toasted on top. Remove an allow to cool completely.
TO DIP IN CHOCOLATE: if you want to dip these in chocolate, add the chocolate chips to a microwave safe bowl and microwave in bursts of 15 seconds, stirring in between burst for 10 seconds until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
Dip the bases of the completely cooled cookies in the milk chocolate and then transfer to a parchment paper lined tray. Using a spoon, drizzle remaining chocolate over the cookies.
Allow to set up at room temperature.
Cookies best within 1-2 days of making. These cookies freeze and defrost really well WITHOUT the chocolate!