Waste not, want not

September 10, 2009 · 1 comment

choc_macaroons

These chocolate-dipped macaroons were an indirect byproduct of the fresh mint ice cream I made last week (this time I used the smaller-leafed mint variety that is closer to peppermint, but it still had a greenness that I am not sure I love in that flavor of ice cream). A custard-based ice cream requires 5 large egg yolks. Usually, I try to get a cheap dozen for this purpose, rather than using five of my prized and pricier local pastured eggs. I didn’t plan well, though, and time was not on my side, so I carefully separated five bright-orange yolks from their whites. I just couldn’t throw them down the drain — that was a dollar’s worth of egg whites (any inkling at this point at just how far my thriftiness-compulsion can go?)!

I remembered from David’s site that he had given folks in my position some helpful suggestions. I didn’t see a single recipe for an egg-white omelet, but I did immediately notice one for these coconut-chocolate macaroons. I’ve never made macaroons, and was delighted to discover that they are not nearly as finicky as meringues (both include egg whites, but the meringues can take on a personality of their own, and just up and decide to never dry out, remaining a disappointing blob of stickiness just to spite you). It’s not quite as quick as whipping up a batch of chocolate chip cookies, since there is a small amount of pre-cooking required; but you can do that days, even months ahead, and then they come together quite quickly.

I’ve found that most people can be weird about coconut. A good percentage of the population will emphatically exclaim that they don’t like it, and refuse to taste a morsel such as the ones pictured above. But my anecdotal experience says that, once you convince someone to try, they often change their tune. Their previous association of the tropical seed involves an overly-sweet, fake-tasting, piña-colada-mix, almond-joy sort of coconut. And these cookies? They would blush and scoff at the insinuation.

The moral of the story? Waste not the white, want not for dessert.

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