"My dad was raised in a rural area of Texas called Garland [in Bowie County]. It was truly the country. Years ago in the 1970s, when we visited my grandfather's farm on summer vacations, there was a dirt road, no street lights and a water well. There was plenty of land with fresh vegetables and fruits. My dad would always tell me and my brothers about his memories of Christmas with my grandfather and his siblings, and how excited they would be when they received a bag of fruit, nuts and peppermint
. He told that story almost every Christmas, and I never grew tired of hearing it. This ambrosia macaroon recipe reminds me of my dad and great Southern traditions."
— Tené Harris, Los Angeles
1 hour, 45 minutes, plus cooling and chilling times
Makes about 4½ dozen macaroons.
Adapted from a recipe by Tene Harris.
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel
24 ounces sweetened, flaked coconut (about 6 cups firmly packed)
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
1. Heat the oven
to 325 degrees and position a rack in the center of the oven. Line 3 large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment.
2. In the bowl
of a stand mixer using a paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and salt and beat until well-blended. Beat in the grated orange peel, then the eggs, one at a time. Gently fold in the coconut.
3. Drop the batter
by the tablespoonful onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing each macaroon 1½ inches apart. Bake until golden on the bottom and browned in spots, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool completely on the sheets.
4. Using a fork,
drizzle the melted chocolate over the cooled macaroons. Chill, still on the sheets, until the chocolate is firm, about 30 minutes.
Each of 4½ dozen cookies: