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Homemade Pesach Macaroons: The BEST, for less!

Way less money than they cost in the store, PLUS you can whip these up in less time than it takes to run to the store!!!  (no whipping required)

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(in our local Pesach bakery, two dozen macaroons will run you about $9-12, if you’re LUCKY… these homemade ones taste fresher and cost well under $5)

Homemade Pesach Coconut Macaroons

(adapted from Bonnie Stern’s Passover Almond Haystacks)

Ingredients:

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar (include a bit of vanillin sugar, if desired)
  • 275g (about 2 1/2 cups?) bag or container of finely-grated coconut – original calls for 3 cups of slivered almonds
  • optional:  1 bag Pesach chocolate chips

How to do it:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Stir egg whites together with sugar until evenly mixed.  Do not beat or whip!  I don’t know if anything bad happens if you try, but you really don’t have to!
  3. Stir in coconut until evenly mixed.
  4. Drop walnut-sized teaspoonfuls of mixture onto parchment paper.  They don’t spread much, so you can drop them fairly close together.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.  If not golden at 15 minutes, bake 5 minutes longer and check again.  When golden brown, turn off oven and leave cookies inside; they will be gooey at first, but “firm up” as they cool.
  6. Optional coating step:  melt chocolate chips over very low flame (hint:  turn off the heat before they’re all melted and let the warmth melt the remaining chips).  Dip fully cooled macaroons halfway into chocolate.  Keep refrigerated unless you know how to temper chocolate, which I don’t.  (tempering chocolate aligns the crystals so that it turns nice and crisp, like a professional chocolate-bar texture, after it’s been melted)

Happy Week-without-bread, everybody!!!

Apple Pizza

apple pizza 001Inspired by Stephanies Kitchen’s approach to the Daring Bakers Pizza Challenge, I …. whoops!  Forgot to post this for a million years and didn’t find it until I was cleaning out my “Drafts” folder tonight. 

Anyway, I did make this for yom tov (Rosh Hashanah 5770; maybe because of the apples?) a couple of years ago and am mostly posting it as a cautionary tale.  It looked delightful, but it was not a homemade crust (I think) and was not actually a very delightful experience to eat.  Ted likes his fruit desserts more fruity and less sugary, and I like mine more sugary and less fruity, so neither of us ate it.

Live and learn, I guess… not a total disaster, but I never have made it since.

Six Word Saturday: 28 Adar II, 5771

Why the weird dates? Click here to find out! 

Easiest Pecan Pie in the World!!!

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The recipe I use is Janis Dohmann’s Pecan Pie, from the Dohmann Pecan Farms website.  I guess they know pecans, but they most definitely know pie.  (though they do warn you that if you use anything other than Texas native pecans, “don't complain to us if you aren't happy with the way your pie turns out.”  I have no clue of the provenance of my pecans, but have never had occasion to complain about this pie.

erev spring 014It’s pareve, but it’s my favourite kind of pareve… the kind where you don’t have to substitute or leave anything out to get the taste of the real thing. 

See how tattered the recipe has gotten?  And this is just one copy; I have several floating around…

The one thing I sometimes do to “doctor” this pie, though I forgot this week, is to add a bit of rum while adding or instead of the vanilla.  Shhh… what they don’t know they’re eating won’t hurt ‘em.  (ok, except my mother-in-law who’s allergic to alcohol!!)

Look how fast it goes together!

First, rescue an old pie pan and cut out a circle to make a pie-crust protector.  Save it from time to time to reuse and you can save yourself this step!

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Sprinkle a frozen crust with the good stuff:  one of the small packets of half-pecans they sell in the baking aisle, plus about half a cup of chocolate chips.

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There is NOTHING like my Danish Dough Whisk to pull together all the ingredients super, super-fast.  Just throw it all in a bowl together and whisk, and whisk until it’s all one mixture.

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Tip:  set the pie on a baking sheet before you do the next step!  Easier to get it into the oven, protection in case it spills, and you can pull it OUT of the oven without sticking your big ugly thumbs into the pie.

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Now pour the liquidy stuff over the crust and all its contents, burying them completely.

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Apply the pie protector.

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Bake at 375 for 20 minutes.  Remove pie protector.

Bake at 375 for ANOTHER 20-30 minutes JUST until the pie is set in the middle. 

By SET, I mean it has a skin on the middle that isn’t liquid.  I don’t mean that it’s completely SOLIDIFIED.  When the pie is done, it will still look like it’s sloshing around a bit.  That’s okay!!!  Don’t overbake it!  As long as the top has a complete skin, the rest of the pie will firm up enough once it’s in the fridge.

Taking it out when it is still jiggly means the pie will be slightly gooey in the centre, even after it’s set.  Everybody around here loves the gooey part best.

If you have time, whip up some real cream or, as we call the pareve stuff, “whippie crème,” to dollop on top.  I had time this week – yum!

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