I am not Jewish, however, I love making macaroons. There is something about them that reminds me of little baked snowballs. Not only are they tasty, but you're less likely to have a direct competitor at a bake sale if you bring these than you would with say... a chocolate chip cookie or a blondie. Please do not confuse a coconut macaroon with the almond macaron which seems to be growing in popularity.
Another thing that I love about baking this treat is that I have to open a can of sweetened condensed milk. This stuff is high on my list of guilty pleasures. Some people suggest that you add the leftovers to your coffee in the morning. This is not for me though, as I don't like sweetened brew. The way I prefer to use up the leftovers is to drizzle it directly onto a spoon - and eat it. Sadly, the whole scene ends with me thrusting the can under the running water to "ruin it" so that I can't eat any more. Yes, use this tip if you feel you're getting out of control.
A friend cut the recipe out of Ladies Home Journal (which is no longer in circulation) for me and it was an instant hit. This recipe is SO easy yet seems a bit "fancy" for a cookie.
2 egg whites
1/2 tsp salt
14 oz shredded sweetened coconut
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milt
*optional - 1 cup chocolate chips, nuts, dried fruit or combination
Preheat oven to 300° F
Whisk egg whites with salt until stiff peaks form. (I do this in my stand mixer with whisk attachment)
Gently fold shredded coconut and sweetened condensed milk into whites. I find that as gentle as I am with my folding, I always feel like I flatten my egg whites. Don't fret. It hasn't ruined my macaroons yet.
Once combined, stir in your chips, nuts or fruit. My typical "stir in" is a pile of the mini chocolate chips. I feel that the minis allow me to better distribute the chocolate bites. I have also baked them plain and dipped the bottom half in melted chocolate after cooling, but the mini chips make it much less fussy.
I've used spoons to create the mounds before but my size 40 OXO scoop is now my weapon of choice. One nicely packed scoop per macaroon. Bake in 300° oven for 25-ish minutes.
I like to let mine go until the edges are brown and crispy & the bottoms are golden and chewy. Using a Silpat baking mat makes removal very easy. These babies can be sticky. I'm sure whatever your go-to method is (non-stick spray or parchment paper) will work if you don't have a silicone pad.
Whether you're celebrating Christmas, Passover or your gluten-intolerant mother in law's birthday, enjoy these tasty treats!