Macaroons are one of my favorite drop cookies and this recipe with the addition of lime makes for a delicious dessert. The original macaroon was a small sweet cake consisting largely of ground almonds similar to Italian or Moroccan amaretti (with a crisp crust and a softer interior). Though the origins are vague, some culinary historians claim that macaroons can be traced to an Italian monastery. The monks came to France in 1533, joined by the pastry chefs of Catherine de Medici and later, two Benedictine nuns, Sister Marguerite and Sister Marie-Elisabeth, came seeking asylum during the French Revoltion. The two women paid for their housing by baking and selling macaroon cookies, and thus became known as the “Macaroon Sisters.” Italian Jews later adopted the cookie because it has no flour or leavening (macaroons are leavened by egg whites) and can be enjoyed during the eight-day observation of Passover.
2 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
pinch of salt
175ml (3/4 cup) sugar
750ml (3 cups) sweetened shredded coconut
1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest
2 teaspoons lime juice
Preheat oven to 160c (325f).
In a stand mixer, beat egg whites until foamy; beat in cream of tartar and salt until soft peaks form. Beat in sugar, 2 teaspoons at a time, until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Fold in coconut, lime zest and lime juice. Drop by heaping 1 tablespoon onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake until golden on tops and bottoms, about 14 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes, transfer to rack and let cool completely.
The Culinary Chase’s Note: Scrumptious, light and very easy to eat!