The best recipes have backstories — at least, Sally’s always do. Here she gives the lineage behind these macaroons.
“My mother had one mean sweet tooth. She would be the one begging to drive the ten miles to the nearest Dairy Queen, where she would always order the biggest sundae. We kids simply couldn’t keep up. So it’s no surprise that she was a great baker. These cookies were something we would often do in my teen years at about nine p.m. as a snack before bed. They were even better for breakfast.”–Lynne Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift
Sally's Coconut Macaroons Recipe
Hands-On Time: | Total Time: | Makes 30 cookies
- 2 large eggs, well beaten
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Generous pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract
- 3 cups sweetened shredded coconut
- 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Spread a sheet of parchment paper over a large cookie sheet, or butter the sheet.
- 2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, salt, and almond or vanilla extract. Blend in the coconut until it is completely moistened. This is not supposed to be a batter, but rather well-moistened clumps of coconut.
- 3. Drop generous teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheet, and bake them for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the macaroons are golden brown with crisp edges. Transfer them to a rack to cool.
- Easter Bunny Nests
- Once the macaroons are on the cookie sheet, tuck a jelly bean or two into the top of each one before baking.
- Chocolate Macaroons
- Prepare the recipe as above, adding 3 to 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder to the egg mixture; or, alternatively, blend in 1/2 cup chocolate chips with the coconut.
- Rainbow Macaroons
- Nothing is better for a little-kid party than tinted macaroons. Imagine Day-Glo pink, Kelly green, and taxicab yellow. Add 2 to 3 drops of the food coloring of choice to the coconut. Toss to evenly color the strands before adding it to the rest of the ingredients.
- Coconut Nut Macaroons
- Prepare the recipe as above, adding 1/2 to 2/3 cup nuts — from coarse-chopped almonds, to pistachios, to hazelnuts — to the coconut mixture.
Sally's Coconut Macaroons Recipe © 2008 American Public Media. Photo © 2008 Mette Nielsen/Tony Kubat. All rights reserved.