Coconut is definitely one of those ingredients that you either like or you don’t. Personally, I love it! It goes well in bread, curry, cookies, drinks and just about anything you can think of. My dad used to make a creamy curry and coconut rice dish filled with chicken, peas and onions that was in one word – DELISH. He wasn’t the cook type, but this was definitely his winning dish out of the few he knew to make. Sitting in the kitchen (I think on the table) with my older sister and watching in disbelief because he never cooked anything but eggs, we would wait patiently as my dad cooked this risotto-like dish. When it was time to eat, my belly would smile and think emphatically, “Yum.” Anyways, coconut is a staple in Vietnamese cuisine so reminiscing about this ingredient is quite easy. We are definitely a food-loving family and no celebration would’ve been complete without some form of coconut.
Today I am sharing my recipe for Coconut Macaroons. These cookies are typically made with sweetened condensed milk, but I find that to be too sweet, so instead I create a fluffy, sweetened egg white mixture (like meringue) that when folded into the coconut and baked, creates a crisp outer shell while keeping the inner “coconutty” goodness moist and chewy. A word to the wise though, the egg whites must be at room temperature in order to create the proper consistency that holds this cookie together. I hope you like them!
- 4 egg whites, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
- In a medium bowl and using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, vanilla extract, almond extract and cream of tartar until soft peaks form on high speed. Gradually and very slowly beat in the sugar and whip until stiff.
- Using a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and coconut. Fold the egg whites into the coconut mixture. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 300 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Drop a tablespoonful of batter onto the prepared baking sheet (using two spoons or a cookie scoop will speed this process up). Leave 3 inches between each cookie.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until slightly golden. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for easy removal.