A delicious detour.
It turns out that pregnancy isn’t something that can be controlled. Sure, you can steer things in the direction you want them to go, but ultimately, it’s going to go how it’s going to go. But far from being a painful lesson, embracing it has been a bit of a personal revelation; it doesn’t have to mean disaster when things don’t come off how you want them to.
Pregnant, parents or not, at some point it's likely you've found yourself going down a road or two you didn’t expect, and while the place you end up might not match where you had in mind (like us buying a house in Croydon rather than Clapham), it can still be wonderful, exciting and rewarding.
That said, it still pisses me off when my attempts at baking fail miserably. Just as these coconut macaroons did when I made them expecting perfect little domed creations, only for them to emerge from the oven as flat little reminders of my shoddy baking skills which I left on a cooling rack in a sweary huff. And then I ate one and figured they tasted exactly how I wanted them to, so all didn’t have to be lost.
Sandwiched between a thick layer of vanilla and white chocolate ganache and strawberry jam, they made chewy, sweet and coconutty sandwich cookies. Another lesson in how rolling with the punches when things don’t go according to plan can produce a better result than you might have hoped for. Especially if you’re armed with an open mind and a lot of chocolate ganache.
For the cookies
- For 12 to 14 coconut macaroons
- 2 egg whites, whisked until foaming but not stiff
- 100g golden caster sugar
- 125g dessicated/shredded coconut
- A level tablespoon cornflour
For the filling
- 100g white chocolate
- 100g mascarpone
- Strawberry jam
- Preheat your oven to 175°C.
- In a bowl whisk your egg whites until they foam, then add all the other ingredients, combine thoroughly — the mixture looks quite dense and ‘shredded’ and is a bit sticky, you might think it doesn’t look or feel like it will bind well but don’t worry.
- Make a ball shaped macaroon using about a tablespoon full of the mixture, and press onto a lined and lightly buttered baking sheet, pressing down gently to create domes. Repeat until all are done then place into the oven for 12 minutes. Once lightly golden topped remove them from the oven and set aside on a wire cooling rack.
- While they are cooling you can make your filling, in a ban-marie melt the white chocolate, then spoon in the mascarpone and beat until smooth with a whisk (if you have an electric one then all the better).
- When the macaroons are cooled try and match them up in pairs that have about the same footprint, then spoon a tablespoon of the chocolate ganache on to the centre of the underside of one, top with a teaspoon of strawberry jam and carefully sandwich together, letting the filling start to squidge out of the edges.
- Dust with icing sugar and serve.