My life has been a little crazy lately. I recently started a new job with bizarro hours, I was extremely sick, then I got second degree burns on my hands, and I had a 2 page spread in an online magazine. I also missed my boyfriend lots and lots. During this period of constant change, I often forgot about all of the little things that make life wonderful. Like taking walks to the local ice cream shop. Or binge-watching How I Met Your Mother from the beginning. And smiles from redheaded babies.
Coconut macaroons are one of those little things. I can’t think of another cookie that comes together so quickly with such incredible results. Biting into a coconut macaroon is like an instant vacation. The toasted coconut combined with the chewy interior is like heaven on earth. Since I’m kinda obsessed with turning alcoholic beverages into baked goods, I decided to take the traditional macaroon one step further and transform them into everyone’s favorite tropical beverage, The Piña Colada.
I kept the whipped egg whites, sugar, and of course the coconut, but I swapped out the boring vanilla with rum and added crushed pineapple. Unlike some macaroon recipes, mine has no flour. I’ve made macaroons with flour and I really don’t think it’s necessary. If you whip your egg whites enough, you don’t need anything to hold them together. I also don’t recommend adding cream of tartar. Every time I’ve used it, I ended up with meringues instead of macaroons. In order to make this recipe a success, you’ll want to whip the egg whites until semi-stiff peaks form. And by semi-stiff, I mean the tips of the egg whites will curl instead of stand up straight. It’s also very important that you thoroughly drain the crushed pineapple. Excess moisture will make your cookies soggy instead of crispy.
But enough with pity parties and technicalities, you have a tastebud vacation to get to!
Piña Colada Macaroons
Makes 18-20 Cookies
4 egg whites
1/2 cup granulated sugar
pinch of salt
2 t imitation rum extract
1, 14 oz package of sweetened, shredded coconut
3/4 cup of canned, crushed pineapple, squeezed dry.
Pam nonstick spray
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray 2 cookie sheets with Pam nonstick spray and then wipe with a clean paper towel. This ensures even distribution.
2. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites, sugar, salt, and rum extract until semi-stiff peaks form. The egg whites should curl when you lift up the whisk. Fold in the coconut and drained pineapple.
3. Using a medium cookie scoop, drop rounded mounds onto prepared cookie sheet. You want to ensure that the mounds stay neat. Bake until lightly golden brown, about 20-25 minutes. Rotate the cookie sheets once throughout baking.
4. Remove cookie sheets from the oven and let cool for about 2 minutes. Then transfer them to a cooling rack. This will greatly reduce any sogginess that may be caused by the pineapple. Place cooled cookies in a ziploc bag and store in the refrigerator. Cookies will keep for 5 days.
Neat Coconut Mounds
What you DON’T want your egg whites to look like!!!
Just pretend you’re at the beach.