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Macaroon Valentines

 

FEBRUARY

Macaroon Valentines

The image of a mother-daughter embrace with chocolate macaroon in hand caught my eye decades ago while pouring over Sunset magazine. A joy to make and share, these palm-sized, decadent confections were a sentimental, edible valentine for mom on the east coast back then.  I loved imagining her delight when my little package of love came to her door.

They remain a February tradition shared with family and friends, though now the cook prefers the hefty almond macaroon version, clipped from a Baker’s coconut and Dole almonds ad.
If your cooked valentine changes shape or oozes, trim with scissors to perfect the heart.  Smile: remnants are tasty on yogurt or ice cream.
Those huge 18-ounce or so bars of dark chocolate from Trader Joe’s are a choice replacement for semisweet. Additionally, it is easier to “paint” or spread chocolate on the front of your cookie with a knife in lieu of dipping.
At Christmastime, these macaroons take on the shape of trees and candy canes, adorned with chocolate and colored sugar or sprinkles!

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Chocolate-dipped macaroon valentines

Ingredients
4 large egg whites
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
3 1/2 cups flaked coconut
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
3 1/2 T butter

Instructions
Beat or whisk egg whites until frothy. Add vanilla, sugar & flour; mix until smooth. Stir in coconut until evenly moistened.
On 2 well-greased 12×15″ baking sheets, evenly space 1/4 cup portions of dough. Pat each into a flat-topped heart about 1/2 ” thick & 3″ long. Bake in 325 degree oven until macaroons are golden & only slightly wet-looking, about 25 minutes. Switch positions of pans halfway thru baking. Transfer macaroons to racks & let cool.
Place chocolate & butter in large bowl over pan filled with simmering water; stir occasionally until melted.
One at a time, dip half of each macaroon in chocolate. Set apart on waxed paper. Chill, uncovered until chocolate hardens, about 45 minutes. Wrap airtight in plastic; chill up to one week. Makes 10.
Source: Sunset magazine, circa 1990.

Almond Macaroons
Ingredients
2 2/3 cups coconut
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 egg whites
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup almonds

Instructions
Combine coconut, sugar, flour & salt in bowl. Stir in egg whites & almond extract. Stir in almonds & mix well.
Drop from teaspoon or shape into hearts or wreaths. Garnish w/ candied cherries. Bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until edges are golden.
Remove from baking sheets & cool. Makes 2 1/2 dozen small or 10 large hearts.
Source: Baker’s coconut & Dole almonds ad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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