I always loved coconut macaroons. As a kid whenever we went to Carrefour which was not so common because mom mainly did her shopping from the local Indian stores… I would without fail pick up one box of macaroons. Mom and I share this love for anything with coconut….be it in curries, chocolates, croissants, savouries, snacks and even in traditional south indian break fasts like Idiyappam, Kozhukattai..We are a believer in all the health benefits that coconut has to offer.
And now just to think I can make one on my own…. without even half the fuss of getting dressed, driving through traffic, waiting in long checkout Q’s and getting a box of coconut macaroons…makes me so happy!
This recipe has been adapted from the pastry chef and cookbook author, David Lebovitz. These are so good – toasted on the outside, chewy on the inside, lovely coconut flavor, and of course not so sweet just like how my family likes their snack or dessert.
The best thing about this is that you can make the batter in advance, like a week ahead and keep it covered in the refrigerator or even freeze it. Even the cookies can be baked few days in advance and kept in an airtight container. I just put mine in the fridge because I had coated them in chocolate..and that would just melt away in this hot and humid Arabian weather.
- 2 ½ cups unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- semi sweet chocolate, chopped 2 ounces (optional)
In a large pan, mix together the egg whites, sugar, salt, honey, coconut and flour. (this step is really important…please combine everything before placing over heat).
Place over low-to-moderate heat on the stove top, stirring constantly, scraping the bottom as you stir. When the mixture begins to scorch or stick to the bottom, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. The mixture will be sticky. Transfer to a bowl to cool to room temperature. (At this point, the mixture can be chilled for up to one week, or frozen for up to two months.)
When you’re ready to bake, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 C).
Now shape the dough into small mounds or pyramids (you can use a spoon or an ice cream scoop…or just use plain hands like I did!), and space them evenly on the prepared sheet pans.
Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire-rack to cool completely.
Next if desired, melt chocolate in a microwave or in a clean, dry bowl set over a pan of simmering water a.k.a. double boiler. Dip cooled macaroons in chocolate and allow to cool completely on cooling rack or on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Then refrigerate them for about 10 minutes for the chocolate to harden quick.
- I’ve used unsweetened desiccated coconut that you get in packets or bins. You can use finely shredded or grated fresh coconut too.
- The batter can be made in advance and put in the refrigerator or even freezer if you want it to stay longer.
- Even the cookies can be baked few days in advance and kept in an airtight container. But since I had my macaroons dipped in chocolate and since it’s close to about 50C here in Dubai, I put them in the fridge so that the chocolate wouldn’t melt!