Friends of mine live in Bloor West Village in Toronto, and I love to go and visit them, not only for their excellent company, but also because there are a lot of shops and restaurants in their neighbourhood that I love to go to. These include a nifty paper shop, a place to get a great variety of vegetarian burgers (try the “Big Apple Deli”, which has apples, treacle, and coleslaw; sounds completely bizarre, but it’s very good), my favourite place to get a smoothie (my choice: pomegranate passion), and Bread & Roses, a bakery-cafe-coffee shop.
Bread & Roses has a small patio on Bloor Street, which can make for some great people-watching in the summer, and a cozy interior that’s a nice place to bring a book and curl up with a book, a coffee, and a snack for a little while. Among the many nice things on offer, the coconut macaroons are a standout: chewy, caramelized exterior, tender moist interior, and dipped in bittersweet chocolate.
During my most recent visit I ate more than a few of them, and decided to see if I could make a satisfactory vegan version at home. After some research on the internets, I decided to go with an approach involving sweetened condensed milk (SCM), which obviously presents a bit of a problem if I wanted to make them vegan; thus I did some experimenting and came up with the recipe for a non-dairy SCM that I posted the other day.
I’ve been using that vegan SCM to play around at macaroons, and I’m quite pleased with how they’ve come out. The recipe is ridiculously fast and easy – you can get a batch of these in the oven in under 10 minutes.
Vegan Coconut Macaroons
- 1c sweetened condensed un-milk
- 1/4c flour
- 2&1/2c sweetened coconut (works best with the finely shredded “macaroon” style, but even the long shreds will work fine)
- 3T soy milk
- 1/2c vegan chocolate chips
- Combine the sweetened condensed un-milk, flour, and coconut in a bowl and mix well. The resulting dough should be fairly sticky, but hold its shape pretty well when formed into a ball. Add more coconut to get a stiffer dough if necessary, or more milk if it’s not sticky enough.
- Form into rough balls the size of a golf ball, and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Bake in a 350F oven for about 15 or 20 minutes, until the bottoms are crisp and dark golden-brown, and the tops are golden-brown.
- Cool on the pan for about 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Heat the soy milk in a bowl in the microwave for about 30s, until it begins to boil. Stir in the chocolate chips and whisk until they are melted and very smooth. Adjust the thickness by adding more soy milk or more chocolate chips to get a consistency that is just thin enough to pour nicely off a spoon.
- Dip the tops of the macaroons into the chocolate, and return to the wire rack to allow the chocolate to harden.
I seriously need to get a new camera. These photos taken with my phone are entirely unsatisfactory.