A macaroon is a type of light, baked confection, described as either small cakes or meringue-like cookies depending on their consistency. The original macaroon was a “small sweet cake consisting largely of ground almonds, similar to Italian amaretti. The place of origin is said to be Italy and/or France.
In India, my mother used to make a coconut sweet called “Panjiri” in which she used to make a sugar syrup, add shredded coconut, herbal gums and loads of dry fruits and let it set before she cut them into sweet cubes. It was one of my favorites and kept my mother happy as it was not easy to feed me dry fruits otherwise. These sweets are great comfort food and healthy snack for winters as it helps ward off cold. Read more about Panjiri here.
I have had a packet of sweetened shredded coconut with me for a few months now and i was pretty clueless as to how i could finish them. I am not a particular fan of coconut, especially with western desserts like cakes and puddings and hence it was getting particularly difficult for me. One thing that i fear is coconut getting rancid as then they just do not taste well. Though many Indian traditional sweets calls for using coconut (mostly freshly shredded), i was really looking forward to make something different with it.
Something which would be a light, easy to make and not too sweet yet something which would really make the coconuts work for my taste buds 😛
My latest experimenting with cookie baking (in case you missed out one of my cookie recipes posted on this blog, i am talking about my PB chocolate chip cookies. Find the recipe here) going great, it infused me with loads of enthusiasm and i took up the challenge upon myself of creating a cookie recipe using sweetened shredded coconut. To my amazement, i did came across coconut macaroons and i had a brain wave. I got really excited about trying out this recipe, especially since i happen to have all the ingredients it asked for.
Now, you must be wondering, do we have a DSB twist here ? YES ! I do have my DSB twist to this recipe, i have combined the Panjiri recipe with the coconut Macaroon recipe and have created a fusion combining the dry fruit richness to the coconut macaroons and adding in the Almond extract for that extra nutty flavor. Also, this is an eggless recipe. Read the recipe below and enjoy !
COCO- NUTTY MACAROONS (Eggless)
Preparation time : 10 minutes
Baking Time : 20 – 30 minutes
Makes about 40 macaroons
- 400 gms of Sweetened shredded coconut ( u can also use dried unsweetened shredded coconut. Take about 250gms in that case and ass 100 gms sugar to the recipe *)
- 1/4 cup condensed milk
- 1/4 cup All purpose flour
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 tsp clarified butter
- 1/3 Dry fruits ( i used Almonds and Cashews) – finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp almond extract (for a more neutral taste, u can replace this with the vanilla essence)
- 6-7 rice paper sheets as base for the macaroons (u can also use parchment paper here)
- Pre heat the Oven to 350F.
- Meanwhile, In a pan, take butter and heat. Once the butter melts down, add in the sweetened shredded coconut and stir on low flame.
- After about 5 minutes, you will notice that the sugar from the sweetened coconut shredding is melting and the mixture starts to become sticky. Remove from flame.
- Now in a mixing bowl, take the condensed milk. To this, add in the salt and almond extract to it and mix well. I used the almond extract to give it an intense flavor of almonds and balance it with the aroma and flavor of coconut.
- Now, add in the sweetened shredded coconut mixture to the bowl and mix well. This will have a runny batter consistency. Now add in the all purpose flour, a spoonful at a time and keep mixing till it forms a thick batter. Adjust the amount of all purpose flour accordingly.
- Line 2 baking sheets with rice paper/ parchment paper and with a help of 2 spoons, spread a spoonful of batter each on the trays for the macaroons. Bake for about 20 minutes or till the macaroons start to turn golden.
- Remove from Oven and let it cool completely. Coco- Nutty Macaroons are ready !! In case you have used the rice paper for lining, the macaroons will stick to the rice paper and you can remove the excess paper from around each macaroon. This creates a clean, flat base for the macaroons.
* In case you go ahead with the un-sweetened shredded coconut, form a thick sugar syrup (Chashni) with 2 thread consistency (basically a slightly thicker syrup) and add the condensed milk and coconut . Proceed with adding the rest of the ingredients as explained above.
These Macaroons are crunchy and great in taste. So easy to make and minimum ingredients, these are a great choice as side serving along with tea/coffee. These are great as it is or you can make them extra special with a coating of dark/white chocolate as well. Its also a good choice for those 4pm hunger pangs as these macaroons are healthy and contain a good amount of dry fruits & coconut… All things good !!
You won’t believe, i am actually looking forward to getting another packet of sweetened shredded coconut soon to create myself some more of these… We simply love these COCO NUTTY Macaroons !! Try make them soon sometime and let me know 🙂