Sunday, June 14, 2009

Lemon Coconut Macaroons

These came out soooo light and chewy with the richness of coconut and refreshing zest of lemon. I actually got the recipe for these from, but subbed 3/4 cup of the almond flour for shredded unsweetened coconut. I also accidentally added 1 cup of sugar rather than 3/4 cup, with 1/4 of the cup for rolling the cookies in. I personally don't think these cookies need to be rolled in suagr and next time I make them, I'll only use 3/4 cup of sugar. Also, it was mentioned in that the dough can be refrigerated to firm it up a bit before rolling it into little balls. This might be a good idea as I did end up with a lot of sugar/almond/coconut on my hands.


1 1/4 cup ground almonds
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
zest of 1 lemon
3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

Preheat oven to 350.

In a med bowl combine almond flour, lemon zest, and coconut. The lemon zest tends to stick together so use a spatula to break them up.

In a large bowl, combine egg and sugar. Add almond flour mix to bowl and stir well to ensure it is evenly blended. If you've got time, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate so the dough will be easier to roll.

Pinch off walnut-sized pieces of dough and roll into a ball. Place on greased or parchment paper-lined pans, 2 inches apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes. These macaroons are not supposed to "brown" in the oven. They should stay a light pale color, so check on them after 8 mins.

Cool on pans, then veeeeery gently peel off.
Makes about 2 dozen.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Homemade Oat Treats

I found a nifty little booklet while in the waiting room of my doctor's office. It was printed by Quaker Oats and had some oat recipes that some chefs came up with. Since I don't eat wheat (among other things) I knew I could find some useful stuff in there so I took one.

Lo, and behold, there was a recipe for oat bars! I'd been meaning to make my own granola bars for a long time but just couldn't find the right recipe. I subbed a few of the ingredients in these Homemade Oat Treats based on what I could find, what I like, and what was priced best (read: cheapest). I've got ingredients that I subbed in, or omitted parenthesis in italics.

Homemade Oat Treats
(Adapted from recipe by chef Kevin Prendergast)

3 cups old fashioned, large flake oats
3/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds (omitted)
3/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup unsalted butter (I used coconut oil)
1/3 cup light brown sugar (I used evaporated coconut sap)
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1/3 cup wild honey (I used brown rice syrup)
1/2 cup wheat germ (I used ground up flax seeds)
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots (I used 1 cup)
1/2 cup flaked coconut (I used unsulphured, unsweetened coconut)
1 cup golden raisisn (I used dried unsulphure, unsweetened papaya)
1 cup sun-dried cranberries (I used 1/2 cup dried unsulphured, unsweetened mango)
1/3 cup sun dried cherries (I used dried pineapple)
(I added a bar of high quality, dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces.)

Preheat oven to 325 F (160 C). Toast the oats, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds and sliced almonds (I'm always afraid of burning almonds so I did this for 5 minutes). In a saute pan, gently heat the butter (or coconut oil), brown sugar (or coconut sugar), cinnamon, and honey (or brown rice syrup), stirring to incorporate the flavours.

In a large mixing bowl, mix the oat mixture, dried fruits (and flax and chocolate if using) together. Drizzle the honey mixture over top, ensuring the oats and fruit get a good "covering". Line baking tray with parchment paper and spread mixture evenly. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes. (The recipe says to cut while still warm but for me, it was way too crumbly. I waited until it completely cooled to cut into squares.)

Makes 30 small bars.

Verdict: chopping the fruits can be a bit of a pain but as long as you've got a good knife, it should be OK. The chocolate gives it a bit of a "burnt" taste, but it's still good and helps me curb my sweet tooth (and avoid eating wheat) at work when there are muffins and doughnuts everywhere.