Chocolate Drizzled Coconut Macaroons

A perfectly delicious dessert to whip up for last minute guests. These gluten and dairy free treats couldn't be more easy to pull together. I made these for several of the holiday celebrations that we went to and they were a hit each time. The original recipe comes from Mark Bittman's classic "How to Cook Everything". Make these the next time you need an impressive sweet finish to a meal!

chocolate drizzled coconut macaroons

Chocolate Drizzled Coconut Macaroons

Adapted from "How to Cook Everything", makes approximately 24 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 egg whites
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup of semisweet dark chocolate chips
Chocolate Drizzled Coconut Macaroons.

Chocolate Drizzled Coconut Macaroons.

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Combine all ingredients in a bowl (you don't even need to beat the egg whites). Use a spoon or ice cream scoop to evenly distribute the dough, place on sheet pan. To form the cone, use wet hands to shape the cookies. Bake the cookies for 15 minutes, or until just browned at the peak. Remove from oven and let cool on the baking tray for 30. In a microwave safe bowl, add the dark chocolate chips. Microwave in 25 second increments, stirring each time, until the chocolate is just melted. Drizzle the chocolate over the macaroons. The chocolate will set up in 10-15 minutes.

Cauliflower "Rice" Perfected

All the testing is done. I've made all the mistakes that you might have and now you can follow my tips and this recipe and get it right from the start. 

cauliflower rice

1. Use your food processor's shredding blade.

I started my recipe testing using the S-shaped blade (Sabatier blade, apparently that's what it's called). I had to process the cauliflower in small batches, pulse each one, then pull out the leftover larger chunks and scoop out the riced cauliflower. Then do it all over again for the next batch. It was tedious. When I switched to the shredding blade, all I did was cut the cauliflower in chunks that fit into the feeder tube, then put them all through the shredder. It was a breeze!

2. Don't let your cauliflower sit.

I'm a big fan of any do-ahead prepping. In the case of cauliflower, the less time before you cook it, the better the flavor and texture. I also found that when I "riced" the cauliflower too far in advance, I lost quite a bit of volume. Even more so than just your normal cooking-veggies-loss-of-volume. 

3. Double the recipe.

Mostly because it's so delicious, but also because like most vegetables, this cauliflower will cook down. See number 2 above.

4. Get creative.

I know you've seen the cool recipes. Cauliflower can handle some strong and interesting flavors, think buffalo cauliflower bites, cauliflower pizza crust and cauliflower cheesy tots. This cauliflower "rice" can morph into fried rice with a little chicken, some peas, carrots, onion, garlic and soy sauce. Or, a pilaf, by adding some chopped dates and toasted pine nuts. 

cauliflower rice

Cauliflower "rice" pilaf with toasted pine nuts and chopped dates.

Cauliflower "Rice" (Vegan and Gluten-free)

serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 large head, fresh cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions

Cut cauliflower into small florets (sized to fit through your food processor's feeder tube). Attach the shredding blade to your food processor and feed the head of cauliflower through to "rice" it. Preheat a large non-stick saute pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Saute the "riced" cauliflower over medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the kosher salt and check for seasonings. Serve hot or warm.

Dense Chocolate Cake-Gluten and Dairy Free

Or, adult brownies as my husband lovingly called them. Not because they have alcohol, simply because they are sophisticated and the very essence of chocolate. I made this cake a few years ago using butter and thought I would try a variation that omits the dairy and substituted coconut oil. It worked out perfectly. A little slice of this perfectly moist cake with a cup of coffee, or Bailey's and your dinner guests will go home happy!

Dense Chocolate Cake

Dense Chocolate Cake-Gluten and Dairy-Free

Adapted from www.epicurious.com

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • Powdered sugar for additional decoration (if desired)
Measuring cocoa powder

Measuring cocoa powder

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 F and grease a 9-inch round baking pan. Line bottom with round of parchment paper and grease the paper. Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a microwave-safe glass bowl, melt chocolate with coconut oil. On full power microwave for 45 seconds, stir, then microwave for 30 second intervals stirring in between until the chocolate is fully melted. Whisk sugar into chocolate mixture. Add eggs and whisk well. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven 20-25 minutes, or until top has formed a thin crust. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes and invert onto a serving plate.

To create a design on top,  place a stencil (you can cut one out of parchment paper, like making a snowflake), and dust with icing sugar. Carefully remove the parchment paper and serve immediately.

Lots of chocolate goes into this dense cake.

Lots of chocolate goes into this dense cake.