Friday, December 4, 2009

Cookies!! Manic Macaroons

It's that time of year again. J My gift to friends and family are my baked goods.

I've gotten very good at developing cookie recipes; very few are true to the original recipe format. If you're getting cookies from me, you're getting cookies you can't get anywhere else. (And usually not any other time of the year as I don't have time for these 2-3 day baking binges otherwise.)

To give you an idea of what my cookie making entails, I will share the morphing of 2 of my most recent acquisitions to my cookie collection.

Macaroon Mania!

My friends Caroline & Jesse put macaroons in their Christmas Cookie collection starting a few years ago. I loved them; they were a candy-like consistency. She gave me their ridiculously easy recipe:

1 14-oz can condensed milk

14 ounces shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Mix the whopping 2 ingredients (probably close to a direct quote from Caroline as she relayed the recipe for me).

Put them on a Parchment Papered cookie sheet.

Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden on top and edges.

The Parchment Paper was the key, though, because these cookies were, as I said, a sticky-candy consistency. Silpat or the equivalent sheets work - but not your regular ole greased or aluminum-foiled or wax-papered cookie sheet!

They were easy, but I wanted more of a cookie texture.

So, I put the condensed milk on Whip for about a minute to get some air into it.

Then I added the coconut AND 1/4 cup flour (or 2 ounces).

After three scrapes of the bowl after slowly bringing it up to a whip again, I got the batter to a texture more like Fluff®.

I scooped those onto my Silpat/silicon layered cookie sheets. (And, after 2 sheets, was gifted with a proper cookie scoop per Husband-of-Awesome who was sick of me cursing at the 2 spoons I was using for this sticky manipulation.)

I baked the slightly altered recipe and - voila! - just what I wanted. Lighter, fluffier macaroons.

Then, another idea hit.


(I mean, what isn't better with chocolate, really?)

I melted half a package of Ghiradelli dark chocolate chips with 2 tbsp of butter in a home-made double boiler (pyrex bowl over sauce pot of boiling water) and dunked half of each macaroon into the chocolate goodness.


The dark chocolate brought out a whole new dimension to the very sweet macaroons. They were 10x better, maybe 50x better - since I had to send H-of-A out for a slew more condensed milk, coconut & dark chocolate because we ran out of cookies before I could even assemble gifts people.

After the slight alteration and addition of chocolate, another idea struck.


(Ok, my muscles were hurting from baking all day… so rum… mmmm!)

It took a few tries with this to get the consistency right… I went through dried pinapple, how much rum, cubed, crushed, etc.

This is what I got:

1 14-oz can cubed pineapple run through food processor and strained until you've got about half a cup of pineapple smush.

1 pony shot (if you don't know what this is, you are a sorry barkeep! j/k about 1 oz. I eyeball it) coconut rum.

4-5 add'l ounces shredded coconut

2 ounces (1/4 cup) add'l flour (making total flour 1/2 cup or 4 ounces).

Prepare the same way. (your cookie output is 1.5x the previous recipe.)

Before baking, top each cookie with half a maraschino cherry.

&, if you've got leftover melted dark chocolate, use a wire whisk to drizzle it - so it doesn't go to waste, of course.

There you go, 2 new and ridiculously easy cookie recipes to try. But I won't share my version of kiffles!!! No way, no how!! ;) (But you can get the original from the DragonLance book Leaves from the Inn of the Last Home.)


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