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Sticky Coconut Macaroons

Asked by maddy168. Answered on 28th November 2011

Full question

I've had 3 unsuccessful attempts at making the Coconut Macaroons (Domestic Goddess, p50) - they turn out way too wet and soggy even though I bake them for an extra 7 minutes. I'm not sure what's wrong - my oven temperature seems to work fine with all the other cakes. As I live in Singapore I have access to freshly shredded coconut. Is that the problem? Could it be packed with way too much fluid? Cheers!

Our answer

The Coconut Macaroons call for shredded coconut but unfortunately Nigella is referring to the dried type of shredded coconut, not fresh. Dessiccated coconut is similar but tends to be very fine and a little more powdery. Dried unsweetened shredded coconut is available in supermarkets and natural food stores in most countries. Fresh shredded coconut will have too much liquid in it and this is likely to be seeping out when you cook the macaroons, making them sticky.

Also as you live in Singapore it could be that the humidity of the air is contributing to the moistness of the macaroons. The base of a macaroon is egg whites and sugar - a meringue - and meringues can be very difficult to make in humid environments as although they need to dry out, they will absorb moisture from the air around them.

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