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Macaroons for Seder

 
 
sozobe
 
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 10:53 am
Hi there,

I'm going to a Seder at a friend's house tonight. I always had macaroons at my grandma's Seders but they were just the canned kind (Manischewitz or however that's spelled). I'd like to bake some.

I've found a bazillion recipes and am trying to decide on which one. Any recommendations or personal favorites?

This is the one I'm leaning towards:

http://bitten.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/02/08/recipe-of-the-day-the-ultimate-minimalist-macaroon/

Quote:
Coconut Macaroons

Yield About 2 dozen

Time About 45 minutes, plus time to chill

Mark Bittman
Ingredients

* 1 cup sugar
* 3 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
* 3 egg whites, lightly beaten
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* Pinch salt

Method

* 1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well with a rubber spatula or your hands.
* 2. Use a non-stick baking sheet, or line a baking sheet with parchment paper. To make the pyramids, wet your hands and scoop out a rounded tablespoon of the mixture into the palm of one hand. Using your other hand, press in gently on both sides of the mixture, bringing the macaroon to a point. Continue pressing with your thumb and forefinger on both sides until you have an even shape. For cubes, start as you would for the pyramids, then gently press equally on all sides, turning the macaroon to square off each side. You can use a butter knife to gently smooth the sides of the pyramids and cubes if you like. For balls, roll the mixture between your palms gently until round.
* 3. Place each macaroon about an inch apart on the baking sheet. Bake until light brown, about 15 minutes. Remove the baking sheet and cool on a rack for at least 30 minutes before eating. These keep well in a covered container for up to 3 days.


(I don't think I'll bother with the shapes though, just round ones.)
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Type: Question • Score: 5 • Views: 3,823 • Replies: 20
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 12:47 pm
@sozobe,
You know me, I'm a big bitten/bittman fan.. so I'd go with that.
I think farmerman posted a macaroon recipe - or thread once. I'll see if I can find it.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 12:49 pm
@ossobuco,
Here it is ----

http://able2know.org/topic/108715-1
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 01:10 pm
@ossobuco,
Oh thanks! I'd missed that one.

Yeah, the Bittman one looks pretty good, and time is running out.

One question, what do you think "lightly beaten" egg whites means? Several other recipes call for beating eggs until peaks form, I get that it's not that far but does it mean to still beat them with a mixer? Just kinda go at 'em with a fork for a bit?
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:00 pm
@sozobe,
Huh, I've not ever made macaroons. Maybe they'll come out flatter? No difference? If I had all the time in the world, I might try it both ways. But, given you follow bittman, I guess I'd toss them around with a fork until they started to thicken and then stop. Did you check if there was a comments section under the recipe?
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:17 pm
Since the recipe instruction is to combine all ingredients into a bowl and mix well, I would think that lightly beaten egg whites means, beaten until slightly foamy. If they were stiffly beaten peaks of egg whites, I think the instructions would have been to lightly fold them into the remaining ingredients to avoid deflation. In this recipe they are acting as the glue to hold the cookie together and not as much as the leven.


On the other hand, I just checked several other macaroon recipes and they all specify stiffly beaten egg whites that are blended with the other ingredients.

I think the author of your recipe needs to give more specific instruction for the egg whites.
sozobe
 
  0  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:39 pm
@Butrflynet,
I found this reference to it, seems to indicate that nothing in particular needs to be done with the egg whites:

Quote:
At last year's Seder, I loved Mark Bittman's (New York Times) macaroons. Extremely simple. 5 minutes to mix, 15 to bake. The egg whites are not whipped. Here it is, paraphrased:

Coconut Macaroons

Ingredients:
3/4 cup sugar
2-1/2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch salt

Paraphrased procedure: Place all ingredients in bowl and combine using your hands (or rubber spatula). The mixture will be very thick. Use silpat- or parchment paper-covered cookie sheet. Use your hands again to shape into globs (small mountains with peaks) and place on baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 till light brown. Remove from oven and cool for 30 minutes.


Gotta get going.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  0  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:43 pm
@ossobuco,
I'm very glad I happened to copy and paste the recipe because I canNOT make the original re-load. I've tried everywhichway. So not sure about comments.

Ah well, can stop off and buy some Manischewitz (or whatever the name is) if need be.
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:50 pm
@sozobe,
I got it to open. Here's a cut and paste of the comments. Looks like the beating of the egg whites is an issue. Some are having problems with it and the suggestion is to beat the egg whites a bit more.





23 Comments
1. February 8, 2008
11:16 am

Link
I have a food science question. I have been struggling to make macaroons of the French variety; the kind that use ground almonds as a base rather than coconut. I adore almonds, but I can never get these cookies quite right. What this has led me to wonder is what it is about ground almond flour that tends to make pastries chewy and sweet? They don’t have a lot of sugars in them. Is it the interaction with the nuts and the eggs? I somehow think that if I understood this better, my macaroons might turn out with a more appropriate texture. Thanks for this daily dose of common sense and cooking, Mark.

" Elizabeth F. Cohen

2. February 8, 2008
11:21 am

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They are indeed delicious! I was inspired by Clotilde’s post, too, and made these last month (photos here). I tried them with finely shredded and coarser coconut and decided I liked the finer shred better, and I also cut the sugar to a heaping half-cup.

One hint for shaping: Keep your hands wet! The mixture is very sticky, but if your hands are damp, it will stick to itself more than to your fingers.

Also, make sure to use a heavy baking sheet and/or a silpat to keep the bottoms from burning before the tops are browned.

" Kitt

3. February 8, 2008
11:47 am

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So has anybody tried a macaroon recipee with almonds AND coconuts? Now that might be interesting.

" Johnny E

4. February 8, 2008
12:11 pm

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Thank you! Thank you! My favorite part of Passover or any Jewish Holiday is the Macaroons. I’m 100% Cajun, married into the faith, and found Macaroons…and more of course. It’s a fight to the death for those tins my mother-in-law puts out for us. I’m working on a Cajun version. How would your recipe taste with a dash of file gumbo spice or hot sauce? Okay, substitute your sugar for heavy dark cane syrup and you have Cajun Macaroons a la LeJeune. Should I add that to my recipes on my blog?
Lyn LeJeune- rebuilding the Public Libraries of New Orleans at
http://www.beatitudesinneworleans.blogspot.com

" Lyn LeJeune

5. February 8, 2008
12:12 pm

Link
yummy

" lo

6. February 8, 2008
1:09 pm

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This looks like a fun, easy recipe to make with young kids. I’m always trying to think of ways to get my toddler involved in the kitchen.

" Saskia

7. February 9, 2008
1:27 pm

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Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I’ve been looking for these ever since I first tried them. I used to buy them them at a bakery in Tyr (Lebanon) about five years ago and had never been able to figure out what they were made with aside from coconut.

" Giselle

8. February 9, 2008
2:41 pm

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Toddlers in the kitchen - have them help you make the dough for no-knead bread.

Read the article here and be sure to watch the video on YouTube. Amazing. If you look around on the internet, a woman blogged her four-year-old doing this.

" Leila Abu-Saba

9. February 9, 2008
7:34 pm

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Oy! All that sugar! I make macaroons with about 1/4 cup of sugar per cup of unsweetened coconut. No one has ever complained that they weren’t sweet enough, either.

" Dianne

10. February 10, 2008
6:04 pm

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Oh, Clotilde, that Parisian goddess of food bloggers! She’s really inspiring, and her cookbook is just great.

Hey Mark - you said to run something by you on your blog, so I am: how might your whole-grain pancake recipe be modified in order to make waffles?

" Emily S.

11. February 10, 2008
10:33 pm

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yummm, I’ve made a sort of Indian version with chopped pistachos, cardamom & a touch of rosewater .. barely there green & lovely.

" oliveoyl

12. February 11, 2008
1:40 am

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So, if I wanted it to have al almond taste, could I substitute almond extract for the vanilla? Or in addition to the vanilla?

" pam

13. February 11, 2008
12:22 pm

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Pam #12 .. I’d add both, though maybe not as much of either as the recipe calls for. I think that the combo of vanilla and almond would make for more complex flavor with additional depth …

when I make macaroons with other flavors I add vanilla too. Sometimes I even use my vanilla sugar.

" oliveoyl

14. February 12, 2008
8:40 pm

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Help! I tried these and the egg whites ran out of the mixture when they baked! Where they supposed to sit for a while first? Should the mixture have been chilled first? I knew they looked to easy to be true…. any advice welcome, please.

" Jane

15. February 27, 2008
5:14 pm

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The beginning of this recipe says “plus time to chill”"where is that part of the recipe?????

" gail

16. March 3, 2008
1:17 pm

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I add my voice to the chorus wanting clarification. Mine too fell when baked. I would also agree that a significant reduction in the sugar is needed. Some guidance please…

" lentnej

17. April 6, 2008
3:06 pm

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I made another batch of these last night, using just under 3/4 cup demerara sugar. The large crystals made the cookies difficult to shape into anything other than lumps, but the cookies didn’t burn on the bottom as fast, so I could cook them long enough to get them nice and golden on top. The slightly “browner” taste of the sugar is quite good!

Photos here.

Really, there can’t be an easier cookie to make. Oh, and I also discovered that Wild Oats (and probably other places that sell bulk foods) has organic shredded coconut in bulk. It’s way cheaper and better than the packaged sweetened stuff that Safeway carries.

Kitt
http://www.kittalog.com

" Kitt

18. April 18, 2008
2:27 pm

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I just finished my first batch of these macaroons - slightly modified, as all I could find at my local supermarket was sweetened coconut (only 1/3 a cup of sugar was used, I guessed) - and mine, too, leaked a bit of egg white goo when they came out of the oven.

For anyone who doen’t like the goo marring their lovely cookies, before they cool take a butterknife or large toothpick and gently pull the oozed bits away from the macaroon. If any coconut comes away with it, it is easily poked back into the macaroons. Once they’ve cooled completely, no one will ever know!

" Laura B

19. May 5, 2008
7:59 pm

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All the posts concerning these cookies oozing and falling apart when prepared are 110% accurate.

I doubt that the author ever actually prepared this recipe.

I’m no pastry chef…but this is about as simple a recipe you can follow and yet, the finished product will not look anything like the picture above.

As other’s have suggested you will have to cut away all the oozed egg white and sugar…and do it quickly too because as soon as it cools it is much more difficult to remove. Might want to only do batches of 12, so you have the time to fix them up after the oven!

" BH

20. May 12, 2008
8:13 am

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I actually used the unsweetened coconut version, and I added 1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour + 1/2 cup of dry cranberries.
I flattened them out, baked them at 250 degrees for around 10 minutes - until golden (though I have a tabletop oven).
They are just perfect. No running or oozing with my batch.
Hope it helps.

" Kris

21. November 1, 2008
9:01 pm

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If you are having problems with oozing try beating your whits more. As far as the first comment about traditional macaroons the reason they are so chewy and sweet is because you use a mixture called TPT which is almond flour and confectioners sugar

" Lili

22. April 5, 2009
1:41 pm

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I am searching for a recipe for macaroons made with almond paste, perhaps ground almonds and chocolate.

" Linda Zenner

23. April 5, 2009
7:50 pm

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Bittman and team! Pyramids and cubes are not for amateurs. My round macaroons look way better.

0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 04:29 pm
@sozobe,
Dont make the macaroons into huge balls, they should be a bite in wach one so that the flavor goes all through and theres a slight baked taste throughout. Also, ant macaroon recipe that had flour in iot was never as light as those qwithout.
YES, beat them eggwhites till you can write your name on em with a toothpick.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:13 pm
@farmerman,
Sorry, I couldn't get back re if there were comments to the bittman article - couldn't get google to open for a bit (windy here?) and gave up when I had to go out. But, anyway, farmerman knows all.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:39 pm
@farmerman,
Ive gotta take more time with my posts , Im always typing in a hurry and cant see my mistakes until I come back and reread. WHAT I MEANT TO SAY WAS:
Quote:
Re: sozobe (Post 3620733)
Dont make the macaroons into huge balls, there should be a single bite in each one so that the flavor goes all through and theres a slight baked taste throughout. Also, any macaroon recipe that had flour in it was never as light as those without.
YES, beat them eggwhites till you can write your name on em with a toothpick.
spendius
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:47 pm
@farmerman,
Quote:
YES, beat them eggwhites till you can write your name on em with a toothpick.


I've tried that effemm. It doesn't half make your kneecaps wobble. Don't try any stairs for half an hour is my advice.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 06:53 pm
@spendius,
Oh dear , soused again. John SMith claims anither un. Poor bastad, never new whut it eem. Well, e cin sleep it off, Fridays an oliday.
Hell be inpain I suspect, with the pubs closed hell have to experience a bit a withdrawal. Buck up brumby.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 07:29 pm
Just checking in, they were good! Not too sweet, and they held their shape nicely. They were a good size, maybe a bit over an inch diameter (ball-shaped).

The one thing I might change next time is I got the bulk unsweetened coconut, which was very dry. They were a bit chewier than I would've liked (though the crisp outside/ moist inside was very nice). I think I'll try it with bagged unsweetened coconut next time.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 07:30 pm
@sozobe,
I beat the eggwhites until they were a little frothy, nothing beyond that -- that seemed to work just fine.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 07:59 pm
@sozobe,
Oh good!!
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Apr, 2009 06:57 am
@ossobuco,
Forgot to relay the verdict of the hostess (just found out yesterday): "Best macaroons I've had in my life." Shocked Yay!

We took a couple of them home and they were noticeably better the second day, as the insides finished "melding" (last bit of dryness of the inside coconut was eliminated).
0 Replies
 
margo
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Apr, 2009 02:34 pm
I love macaroons - any left??? Rolling Eyes
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Apr, 2009 02:58 pm
@margo,
I also like almond macaroons, aka amaretti.

Hmm, I have almonds, I have eggs..
0 Replies
 
 

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