This is what I call confessions of a gluten free granddaughter.
I’ve been traveling with my sister and this little man quite a bit lately.
This past weekend we took him to New York to meet his great-grandpa. It was the cutest thing I’ve ever witnessed. Grandpa was elated. It was the happiest I’ve ever seen him. And then he said it. The three words I inevitably knew were coming. “We need cake!”
I’ve told you before that my grandpa never needs a reason to make his daily bakery run(s), but this called for celebration, so right away, we were in the car heading to the bakery. But here’s the thing…I’m gluten free now. And here’s the other thing…Grandpa doesn’t know it. I know! I’m terrible. I’m living a lie, but you try explaining it to a cake loving, sugar feigning, 92 year old suffering severe hearing loss. It’s just not happening. He’d disown me.
So here’s what we do. We fake it. We fake it so good. We found a bakery on Long Island with gluten free cookies. So I always request that we go there for my favorite cookies. And because I’m not getting cake, he insists I get myself an entire pound of cookies. Because in his head, a piece of cake is equivalent to about 25 cookies. But in the end we’re all happy. He and my sister have cake and I have my cookies and he still loves me…maybe just a little bit less than my cake-eating sister.
But you know what. I’d pick cookies over cake even if I weren’t forced to. I love a good cookie. And, because we’re friends, I made you some. Pumpkin-coconut macaroons. They’re puffy clouds of coconutty goodness with a touch of fall mixed in. They’re a perfect hostess gift or a contrastingly light addition to the usual heavy gluten-full Thanksgiving dessert table. So add these to the menu. No one will notice that they’re gluten free. And trust me, your secret’s safe with me.
Pumpkin-Coconut Macaroons (makes about 13)
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg white
1.5 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
¼ cup toasted, raw pecans, chopped
¼ cup pureed pumpkin
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
½ cup of chocolate chips, melted, for drizzling (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
2. Whisk together the sugar and egg white. Whisk it like crazy.
3. Mix in the rest of the ingredients. Really, it’s that simple.
4. Roll the dough into tablespoon-sized balls using your hands and place them on the baking sheet.
5. Shape into a macaroon shape (more of a dome than a ball) and bake about 10 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom and edges. The baking time will vary depending on the size of your macaroon.
6. Let cool. If drizzling chocolate, be sure they are completely cooled and use either a spoon or corner-snipped sandwich bag to drizzle the chocolate. Let the chocolate set (I put mine in the refrigerator for about an hour). Remove from pan and enjoy.
1. I originally tried the recipe using almonds and more pumpkin, then again with pecans and less spice, then again, and again. I wish I were kidding. I changed a little something each time until they were, in my opinion, perfection. But use different nuts or add more sugar if you want them on the sweeter side. Dip them in chocolate instead of drizzling. It’s up to you. Do what you like.
2. I adapted a macaroon recipe from Martha Stewart Living I cut out in April 2009. So I have a 3.5 year backlog of recipes to blog. Stick around. I’ll be here for a while.
Posted on November 14, 2012