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Almond Macaroon Cookies

Chewy Almond Macaroons

These almond macaroon cookies take me way back to my youth. I have very clear memories of visiting St. Agnes bakery, near Perranporth in Cornwall with my father as a young lad whilst on holiday down there in the West Country.

recipe for almond macaroons
Before…..

 

almond macaroons recipe
After the baking….

Although this old bakery is renowned for their Cornish Pasties, we would go there especially to buy the fantastic old fashioned macaroons they sold. What really sticks in my memory is that back then the bakery would always be buzzing with very large wasps which terrified me as a kid, and I am sure this helped me develop a manic phobia for wasps! But then, August in the UK is wasp season!

pics of macaroons

I am sure they have dealt with that problem now though. We are talking about 50 years ago and the fantastic smell in that place would attract anything for miles around!
As I remember their macaroons were huge great things, deliciously soft and chewy on the inside and hard on the outside, with a rice paper bottom and a single halved almond on top. We would add these to our cornish pasty to finish off our packed lunch on the beach.

recipe for macaroons

Types of Macaroons

There are several types of macaroons (not to be confused with a French macaroon or macaron, which is a meringue-based confectionery). These lead back to the origins of macaroons which were supposedly an Italian monastery in the 8th or 9th century.

vanilla macaroons recipe

Traditionally almond paste was used in the recipe and later some people added coconut to the macaroon recipe to change it. This, however, is an almond macaroon recipe and I use ground almonds and icing sugar.

I did actually try to make these by adding some desiccated coconut to the recipe and they turned out quite well (they were actually really delicious). But I did find the next day they had become quite hard so have not included coconut in this recipe.

Do not despair, I will soon be adding a coconut macaroon recipe to my site 🙂

cookie jar

Big or small?

This easy macaroons recipe will give you some rather smaller versions compared to the ones we had in Cornwall. But they taste just as good and are very moreish, so make sure you make enough of them! The small ones also fit in the cookie jar!

how to make macaroons

You could always try making them a bit bigger I suppose if you prefer, but they may take a bit more time to cook properly, and they will be more difficult to remove from the baking sheet. This is what happened when I tried making them a bit bigger.

easy almond macaroons recipe
Note the soft bottoms. Let them fully cool before removing

This recipe will give you about 18-20 small cookies or maybe 10 large ones. If you are going to make big ones it may be sensible to use some rice paper, if you can get it, otherwise, they will be more difficult to remove from your baking tray, due to the soft sticky bottoms.

recipe almond macaroons

How to Bake Macaroons

Almond Macaroon Cookies

Almond Macaroon Cookies

These delicious almond macaroon cookies are a wonderful tasty sweet treat. Keep them hidden because they won't last long!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 260g icing sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 190g ground almonds
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1,5 tbsp cornflour
  • 1,5 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 tbsp flaked almonds

Instructions

    1. Pre-heat the oven to 160C.
    2. Combine the ground almonds, caster sugar and cornflour together in a bowl. Take the egg whites and mix with the vanilla extract in a separate bowl. Then whisk them by hand until they are just becoming foamy.
    3. Fold the egg whites into the almond/sugar mixture to form a sticky dough. Mix it well using a wooden spoon. Then use a couple of spoons to place about 18-20 mounds of dough (with these quantities) onto a non-stick surface, or two depending on oven size. (I normally use a silicone mat but grease-proof or parchment paper also works fine).
    4. Place them well separated from each other as they will grow in the oven.
    5. Then sprinkle the flaked almonds on the top. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or until browned.
    6. Take from oven and leave to cool. When cooled, store in an air-tight container.

Notes

Traditionally these cookies would be cooked on edible rice paper as you will find that the bottoms stay quite soft.

However, I could not find any rice paper in the stores near us and there was no problem removing them from the silicone mat or baking sheet (I used both in these pictures).

If you make them bigger then they may be more difficult to remove.

 

 

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