I am so excited about sharing this recipe with you! It’s a new twist on a traditional family favorite. I’m tempted to claim that I was inspired to try this variation, but the truth is, it happened simply because I failed to plan ahead. So again, this is a case of necessity being the invention of mothers. Or however that goes…
I don’t remember the first time I baked Cook’s Illustrated’s Almond Macaroons. The kids were really little, so it was probably twenty years ago or so. I’m sure I made them for Passover, since we’ve always done some sort of seder, during which we pretend to care about flour and leavening.
It became something of a tradition to serve what Brian called “macayoons,” (and they will always be thus), with big bowls of Chocolate Dip and fruit for dessert at the end of the Passover meal, after the ritual of the afikomen and the cursory acknowledgement of the evils of slavery.
So, I decided to resurrect (see, I’m thinking Easter, too) our old ritual this year, but I forgot to buy almonds. I did have a beautiful new bag of pecans. Since my husband is a huge pecan fan, I decided to see if the recipe would work as well with those. Stunning success!!!
These are ultra-full of pecan goodness, pleasantly dense, tender, and chewy, unapologetically sweet. They contain no flour, so are kosher for passover and gluten free.
Makes 20-24 cookies
3 cups pecans
1 ½ cups cane sugar
3 egg whites (1/3 cup)
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 325°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment.
Grind the pecans in a food processor fitted with the steel blade, 1 minute. Add the sugar, and process until finely ground. Add the egg white, salt, and vanilla and process until mass gathers around blade.
Form rounds using about 2 teaspoons of dough per cookie. You may do this using a portion scoop or spoon, or form balls by rolling them between your palms. I’ve also used a piping bag or a zip-top bag with a corner snipped off. Place them about an inch apart.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until very lightly browned. Cool slightly before serving. These freeze well, bring to room temp before serving.