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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Easy Pesach Coconut Macaroons

I love cooking and baking. Could you tell? At the same time, there are some things that I just don't make. There are actually lots of things that I don't prepare.  I used to want to cook and bake everything but learned that with a family, a job and a life besides cooking, that some things are not worth the time, especially if you can buy them or have a friend or family member who can make it instead. Examples? Kreplach: after spending a ton of time in the kitchen only to have a 12 little sad things floating in my soup when I can just buy a package that tastes better and takes no time. Gnocci-same! Sushi, I cheat and make Sushi Salad and have children that make it sometimes but no matter what it tastes better from the Sushi place.  

Until this very moment in time, macaroons fell into that category. I remember, every year my mom buying the canned macaroons that were small, over-moist and sickly sweet and I never did care for them much. Then one year, I had a palate-opening experience. Gitel's a kosher bakery in Chicago in the 1980's, opened it's new premisis just before Pesach and they were selling these large, fluffy, delectable macaroons. I then discovered that I like macaroons. After that year, those airy and tasty macaroons disappeared into thin air, never to be seen again until I came to Israel in 1986, you couldn't find the sticky canned stuff any where but every bakery and supermarket was filled with these puffy, fluffy, delicious coconut delights.  

So, again...why should I make them? Even with the inflated and crazy prices, there is so much other work for Pesach, so who needs to make something that can be bought. The truth, I would have never thought of making them but ironically, now, in the middle of using up all my Hametz food, I found myself stuck with an opened bag of coconut to use up and decided to experiment.

Well, they came out delicious! Not as pretty as the store bought ones but light and not too sweet. I'm still not sure if I'll make them for Pesach but I will definitely consider it if time permits.





Ingredients

3 cups unsweetened, shredded coconut
4 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch salt

Directions

Heat oven to 180 C (350 F)
Whip up egg whites until peaks form.
 Gradually add sugar vanilla and salt and whip some more until well-blended
Mix coconut into egg white mixture
Form into balls and bake until lightly browned for 15-20 minutes

Makes 20-24 cookies