I am a freelance writer born in Johannesburg now living in Melbourne. I love travelling and have lived in London and Taipei as well as travelling in and around South Africa. I have a great interest in exploring and love to share my finds with others.
Published July 9th 2012
I've noticed for some time now that macarons, in a blaze of colours and fillings, have become all the rage. This led me to wonder about the beginnings of this simple but delicious sweet.
The original macaroons were actually almond meringue cookies, which can be likened to today's amaretti. This macaroon has a crisp crust and a soft interior made from egg whites and almond paste (a combination of equal parts of ground blanched almonds and sugar, mixed with egg white).
Although the biscuit's origins aren't 100% clear, culinary historians believe macaroons can be traced to an Italian monastery—where they were modelled after the monks' belly buttons.
Jewish Italians adopted the delicious treat because it has no flour or rising agents and therefore makes it the perfect treat for Passover and soon became popular as a year round treat. Jewish Italians version of the macaroon contains shredded coconut sometimes along with almond meal, but more often replacing this ingredient. This version is commonly referred to a macaroon.
This is a simple and delicious recipe, which is lower in calories compared to other biscuits.
Why not try them at home!
2 Eggs separated cup Sugar
Pinch of salt 3 Cups of Coconut
Beat egg whites and salt until soft peaks form.
Beat in egg yolks one at a time.
Gradually add sugar making sure to beat well until sugar is dissolved.
Stir in coconut.
Spoon teaspoonsful of mixture onto an aluminium foil or Glad bake lined tray.
Bake at 170 degrees C, for 15 – 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool on wire trays.