Sunday, January 1, 2012

Gluten Free Macaroons Recipe

This week I made some scrumptious gluten free coconut macaroons.  This recipe was inspired by Alton Brown from the Food Network.  I  made them for Passover last year, and I had to make a second batch because my friends and family were eating them too quickly.  Since these macaroons caused such a stir, I do not save the recipe just for Passover.  So, when I was invited to a Holiday Cookie Swap, I decided that that was a perfect excuse to make the macaroons.  Unfortunately, the party was canceled because the host's children were sick.  Then I was going to make them when my parents were visiting, but my kids wanted to make a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting for my father's birthday instead.  So, I kept putting the macaroons off.  Then a few days before New Years, I decided that this was the perfect excuse to make them.  They are really easy to make, and they turned out amazingly!  I have also topped them with melted dark chocolate, but I decided not to do that this time.   

Gluten Free Macaroons Recipe

16 oz sweetened shredded coconut
2 oz sweetened condensed milk
Pinch kosher salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 large egg white, room temperature
5 oz sugar

Place the small deep bowl with a rounded bottom from your stand mixer, along with the whisk attachment, in the freezer for about 15 minutes.  The eggs will whip more easily when the implements are cold.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Combine the coconut with the sweetened condensed milk, salt, and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl.

Take the bowl and whisk attachment out of the freezer and place on the mixer stand.  Beat the egg whites first at a slow speed and then gradually move up to medium until the eggs are foamy.

I have found that if you bring the eggs to room temperature, you will get more volume when beating the egg whites.  Egg whites can be brought to room temperature by setting the eggs out on the counter for at least 30 minutes in advance of your preparation.  

Gradually add the sugar and continue to whip the eggs whites until medium peaks are formed.  Do not overbeat them, they will liquify again.  When egg whites are perfectly whipped, they remain stable, even if you tip the bowl upside down.

Gently fold the egg white into the coconut mixture.  Scoop tablespoon-sized mounds onto a parchment lines cookie sheet.  I baked the cookies in a convection oven for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned.  If you are not using a convection oven, I would recommend baking the cookies for 20-25 minutes.  Once you take them out of the oven, immediately take the parchment paper off the cookie sheet.  Leave the cookies on the parchment paper, because they will solidify as they cool.

These macaroons are amazing by themselves, but if you would like to fancy them up a bit you can top them with chocolate.  I have used 12 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate chips and 1 ounce vegetable shortening.  First you need to fill a 4 quart pot with enough water to come 2 inches up the side.  Put this on a medium heat and bring it to a simmer.  Combine the chocolate chips and shortening in a small glass bowl that can set in the pot without touching the water.  Stir occasionally until the chocolate is melted, and then remove it from the heat.  Dip the tops of the cooled macaroons in the chocolate mixture and place back on the parchment paper to set.  It takes about 30 minutes for the chocolate to set.  Either way you choose to make them, I hope that your family and friends will enjoy these as much as mine.

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy New Year!  Enjoy!


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