COCONUT MACAROONS WITH FIG FILLING
Macarons and Macaroons… The former are a high end cookie type french confections made up of almond flour, egg whites and sugar, while the latter, ( a little consolation for unskilled bakers like me :-)) are usually made of sugar ,egg whites, coconut and in a whole lot of other flavours. The most classic way of making macaroons is in the form of bite sized coconut dumplings. These ‘ready to stash into mouth’ sized treats come with their own versatality -with eggs, eggless, coconut and chocolate, nuts, with or without stuffing etc.
My left over figs after the fig fudges I made for the Dussehra, made entry into these eggless, butterless macaroons, adding an another citrusy flavoured dimension to the crisp golden outside chewy inside treats.
I used two different recipes, one for the macaroon which I borrowed and modified from egglesscooking.com and the one for fig filling is from makingthymeforhealth.com, which I modified by replacing honey with brown sugar and by adding few bread crumbs to bind it.
For the macaroons :
- Shredded/powdered dessicated coconut- 2 ½ cups
- Condensed milk- ½ cup
- All purpose flour- ¼ cup
- Cardamom powder- a pinch
For fig filling:
- Dry figs – 15 ( round slices as available in most shops in India)
- Water- to boil and soften figs, around 1 cup
- Brown sugar (or white granulated)- 3 tablespoons
- Orange zest- ½ tablespoon
- Salt- ¼ teaspoon
- Bread crumbs- 2-3 teaspoons ( to bind the filling)
Preparation of filling:
- Prepare the filling first, as it has to cool down before you can stuff it inside the macaroons.
- Boil figs in sufficient water to soften them, may take around 10-15 minutes.
- Drain the water, to the same vessel add brown sugar, zest and salt and let the figs cook in the melted sugar. Make sure the flame is low.Keep stirring intermittently.
- Once the figs are completely soft, switch off the gas, allow the figs to cool down.
- In a mixer, make a coarse paste . Add bread crumbs to the filling to bind the paste and make it firm. You can also add semolina/suji/ rawa if bread crumbs are not available.
Preparing the macaroons:
- Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees C.
- Dry whisk dessicated coconut, cardamom powder and all purpose flour so that they get mixed well.
- Add condensed milk to the dry mixture, either using an electric beater or hand , mix the contents well.
- Make a firm dough, add dry coconut if the mixture seems to be too sticky.
- With clean hands, pinch off a small golf ball sized dough, flatten it and stuff the fig filling rolling the coconut ball till the filling is completeley inside.
- Flatten the coconut balls on a non stick surface or baking sheet, transfer to a baking tin.
- Bake at 180 degress, for 10-12 minutes, keeping an eye on the colour after ten minutes, as they turn from golden brown to dark brown very fast.
- Cool on a wire rack, store in air tight boxes.
- The macaroons turned soft the next day probably due to the high humidity here in the air, but still tasted awesome.
What are your ways to stuff these golden beauties?