Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Easiest, Cheapest, BEST Macaroons (homemade!)

image This is actually a repost from my bread blog last April, of a recipe I have been making for at least 3 years, since I learned the basic outline of it from a Bonnie Stern Pesach cooking demo (she uses almonds, but I sub finely-ground coconut (unsweetened)). 

imageI know they sell (relatively) cheap macaroons in tins at this time of year, but believe me, don’t even TRY to substitute those if you’re craving a real, crunch-on-the-outside, almost-gooey-interior macaroon.  Those canned ones are just plain “sweaty,” both feeling and tasting, through and through.

Besides, these are absolutely the easiest, I promise.  No whipping!  Just stir and bake – they will be the easiest part of your Pesach cooking.

The original recipe is actually called “Gwen’s Almond Haystacks,” so I guess this version is “MamaLand Coconut Bonnie Stern’s Gwen’s Almond Haystacks.”  Maybe with a couple of commas to make it look all official-like.

Homemade Pesach Coconut Macaroons

(adapted from Bonnie Stern’s Passover Almond Haystacks)

Ingredients:

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar (include a bit of vanillin sugar, if desired)
  • 275g (about 2 1/2 cups) bag or container of finely-grated unsweetened coconut (for the original, use 3 cups of slivered, blanched almonds)
  • optional (if dipping):  1 bag Pesach chocolate chips

How to do it:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Stir egg whites together with sugar until evenly mixed.  Do not beat or whip!  Nothing bad happens if you try, but you really don’t have to!
  3. Stir in coconut until evenly mixed.
  4. Drop walnut-sized teaspoonfuls of mixture onto parchment paper-lined cookie sheet.  They don’t spread much, so you can drop them fairly close together.  When all balls have been dropped, with damp hands, pinch a tiny elf-hat “point” at the tip of each cookie to make them look more like the store-bought kind.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.  If not golden after 15 minutes, bake 5 minutes longer and check again. 
  6. When golden brown, TURN OFF OVEN and leave cookies inside; they will be gooey at first, but “firm up” as they cool.
  7. Optional - Coating:  Melt chocolate chips over very low flame (hint:  turn off the heat before they’re all melted and let the warmth melt the remaining chips).  If you are a kitchen goddess, you may temper the chocolate properly, but don’t tell me about it or I’ll get all jealous.  Dip fully cooled macaroons halfway into chocolate.  Or, heck, drop ‘em all the way in and then fish them out with your fingertips.  I don’t mind!  Keep refrigerated unless you tempered the chocolate (tempering aligns the crystals within chocolate so it takes on a nice crisp texture, like a professional chocolate-bar, at room temperature).

What’s your go-to Pesach baking secret???  Hope you’re not sick of coconuts yet!

2 comments:

  1. It is on my menu to try again. I have tried multiple times now without success. Hopefully your recipe will be the winner for me.

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  2. Well, I just made these again today and they worked out (once again) perfectly. Chocolate-dipped, of course. :-)

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