These Aren't My Mother's Coconut Macaroons (They're Even Better)

Chewy, crunchy, and chocolaty all at once.

10/28/2021 4:00:00 AM

Chewy, crunchy, and chocolaty all at once.

Chewy on the inside, crunchy on the outside, coconutty all the way through, these little gems are nothing like the oh-la-la pink, purple, or green macarons that replaced the cupcake for Hot Bakery Trend of 2008. A well-executed macaroon satisfies on three criteria for me—consistency, taste, and appearance. So, in developing this recipe, I broke it down step by step.

EmailChewy on the inside, crunchy on the outside, coconutty all the way through, these little gems are nothing like theoh-la-lapink, purple, or greenmacaronsthat replaced the cupcake for Hot Bakery Trend of 2008. These are the cookies that cemented my coconut addiction many years ago. I grew up in a house with no store-bought cookies or sweets of any kind, so my brother and I were forced to improvise with my mom's baking ingredients. She always had Baker's Angel Flake coconut, in the iconic blue and white bag, and bittersweet chocolate, the cornerstones of coconut macaroons.

January 6 committee casts a wide net with over 100 subpoenas for phone records NBA Shot Clock Ejected From Game After Startling Referee With Buzzer Gaming Win: This Pro Gamer Did Something Terrible And Everyone Is Sweeping It Under The Rug Like He’s A Real Celebrity

A well-executed macaroon satisfies on three criteria for me—consistency, taste, and appearance. Appearance is the wild card here, because these are iconic cookies and have to be recognizable as such, at least in part.So, in developing this recipe, I broke it down step by step.

ConsistencyFor my macaroon journey (a really, really long one), I began with a recipe from my mom's cookie collection, which may have originated withGood Housekeepingcirca 1957. This one had sweetened shredded coconut, whipped egg whites, sugar, and vanilla and almond extracts. While it was pretty classic, I found the cookies a little piece-y—that is, they broke into pieces as you ate them—dry, and horrifically sweet. Plus, throwing away the egg yolks irked me. (In retrospect, I should have saved those yolks—I used the better part of two dozen egg whites to get to the perfect macaroon. Ah, the lemon curd I could've made!)

So, for the next batch, wanting a little creaminess to combat the piece-y-ness, I added yolks back. What a mistake—the cookies were rubbery and flat. Yuck! Okay, so no more yolks, but I did want some creaminess. I saw several recipes calling for sweetened condensed milk and decided to give that a shot. It was sugar overload, and it made a pretty wet macaroon that didn't hold its shape. Freezing the cookies for a few minutes before baking helped a bit. What about reducing the moisture in the coconut to compensate for extra moisture from the condensed milk? I found that toasting the coconut made the consistency a little drier, but the cookies still didn't hold that iconic macaroon shape.

Dried, unsweetened coconut is the key to great texture.Next I tried dried, unsweetened coconut (found in supermarkets or specialty stores), which is a little finer in texture. It resulted in a crunchy outside and perfectly chewy inside, and it produced the best macaroons yet. Success! (By the way, just like

nuts, coconut is easy to toast in the microwave: Put it on a microwave-safe plate and toast in 30-second intervals until lightly golden, about two minutes total.)Then a crazy idea struck me: Dulce de leche is just cooked-down sweetened condensed milk. Perhaps that would give even more creaminess, with an added flavor boost to boot. It worked like a charm and was absolutely amazing—chewy, creamy, and moist.

The one problem? It yielded an un-iconic golden macaroon (curse you, Appearance!) that had to be dealt with.FlavorToasting the coconut adds flavor to the macaroons, inside and out.My first move was to ditch the almond and vanilla extracts altogether. I found they lacked subtlety and overwhelmed the coconut, even in small amounts. Vanilla bean (seeds scraped) or vanilla paste added a pleasant aromatic depth in place of the vanilla extract. Being a good Italian, I had a bottle of nut liqueur in my bar that I used in place of the almond extract. Don't worry if you don't have any—brandy or cognac is a fine substitute. Finally, toasting that coconut was not only great at improving consistency, but also boosted the flavor.

NBA warns unvaccinated players of updated travel restrictions for games in Canada World's Largest Edible Brownie with 20,000 MG of THC Will Be Sold Elon Musk doubles down on ending 'subsidies' as competitors now reap more benefits

AppearanceOn to the final criterion, and perhaps the least important: appearance. Out of my dozen or so tests, I had a few definite favorites—that dulce de leche version among them. But try as I might, I couldn't get over the fact that it turned the macaroons brown instead of the traditional pale golden, nor could I find a way to get the same flavor without it.

Instead, I'm going to take the easy way out and leave the choice entirely up to you. My final recipe uses unsweetened shredded coconut (lightly toasted), whipped egg whites, vanilla paste, and nut liqueur, along with your choice of either sweetened condensed milk (for a classic appearance) or dulce de leche (for the best flavor and texture).

Read more: Serious Eats »

The 'Home Alone' house could be yours for one night only

CNN News, delivered. Select from our newsletters below and enter your email to subscribe.

Why even some vaccinated parents aren't planning to rush to give kids Covid shotAs the FDA is expected to rule on the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine for young children, some parents say they’re not rushing out to get their kids vaccinated. I’m old enough to remember when my fellow lefties were very skeptical of large pharmaceutical companies. Now that is considered a right wing standpoint. What happened? Statistically it's a non-issue for young kids. When my boys had it, as long as you kept Tylenol and ibuprofen in them, you didn't know they were sick. The study will at least get much larger with the 1/3 of parents jumping at this.

usatodayopinion They were agressors and he defended himself. That's why usatodayopinion nice usatodayopinion Rioters would be acceptable.

The Supreme Court Is to Blame for Racist PolicingIf we had better laws, we’d have better policing. I'd like to live in your fairy-tale world, but the Fair Play For Cuba Committee is retro-fitting my mower to power Fidel's one-man escape sub. No , they don’t re 'SupremeCourt Is To Blame for Racist Policing' re policy... some truth perhaps re Practicality... racism entrenched w/in LawEnforcement Cops Shooting Pets in Black and Brown Communities at Much Higher Rates BY STEFANO BLOCH & DANIEL E. MARTÍNEZ

The Best Under-$50 Gifts from Aerie for Literally Everyone On Your ListThey're cute, they're chic, they're cozy—they do it ALL. Aerie you never disappoint ✨ sponsored

Here's The Difference Between A Cemetery And A GraveyardPeople use these words interchangeably, but they aren't entirely the same.

Gift cards suck, just give cashHoliday shopping? Skip the gift cards and just give people cash Unfortunately, with the adoption of Non-Binding Irrefutable Consensuses, and thusly Hyper-Capitalistic Socialism, cash will have to cease to exist. We would actually mind how much money we would waste printing it. Thats how expensive cash will be...and literally...heavy. What's cash?