Gosh, I am legging so far behind in all the Christmas baking while other people are churning out cookies left, right and centre and I have not done a thing yet. There was some snow already, well, flakes and nothing stayed but I am getting a bit freaked out with Christmas baking & blog/cooking-stressed here, how are these people doing it with one post a day??? And all these other recipes in the queue which would work quite well for those who are celebrating Thanksgiving: a nice potato side dish (hopefully tomorrow), sherry-raisin ice-cream (raisins soaking already) and a good way to use up egg-whites (at least 3 of the 5 for the ice-cream) in form of snow white macaroons.
Anyway, coconut macaroons are one of the many traditional German Christmas cookies and they would either make a nice hostess gift or simply getting the prime spot of being this year’s first cookie. These have had to take a back seat while everybody was busy making Macarons, but for Christmas, I think they should go back into the classic line-up of Vanillekipferl, Lebkuchen, Honigkuchen, Engelsaugen, Berliner Brot, Basler Leckerli, Marzipankartoffeln, Zimtsterne…. If that does sound all exotic German to you, well, let me tell you this name-dropping conjures up the full Christmas market idyll and we will try to do them all.
So in honour of yesterday’s first attempt at snow, snow white coconut macaroons like my grandmother Anni used to make them. See, I am even a little bit earlier than last year.
Kokosmakronen – coconut macaroons
makes about 50
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 pinch of salt
225g (8oz or 1 ¾ cup) Icing sugar / confectioner’s sugar (Puderzucker)
60g (½ cup) plain flour
200g desiccated coconut (Kokosflocken)
50 round baking wafers or white rice paper wafers (4cm or 1 ½ inch in diameter; Backoblaten)
Preheat the oven to 150°C (300° F), fan oven: 130°C (260° F), gas mark 1.
Beat the egg whites together with the lemon juice and salt until really firm. Pass the flour and icing sugar through a sieve onto the stiff egg whites, add the coconut and fold all carefully into the egg mixture. It should be firm and dry, not runny or wet nor should it loose its shape.
Spread the baking wafers out on baking tray / sheet and either using 2 teaspoons or a small ice-cream scoop (I used a heaped #70 disher) place little mounts of macaroon mass onto the white paper rounds. They should about cover the paper and have little mountain tops which is like we used to have them or you could follow the other school and flatten the tip to get a round mount. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until slightly golden. Leave to cool on a separate tray or wire rack.
Tip: It might be a bit fiddly to place the mass onto the gliding wafers and you want to hold one side of the wafer while placing the macaroon mass on it.
Keep in an airtight container or the classic biscuit tin. If they tend to get rock hard, just add a slice of apple or peel to the container and exchange after a few days. This way they are definitely staying soft.