In Flavor Flours (Artisan Books, 2014), Alice Medrich brings her legendary skill and impeccable palate to non-wheat flours. These flours can be used artfully, not just as replacements for wheat flour, and Medrich presents nearly 125 recipes that showcase the unique qualities of a variety of ancient grains, coconut flour, and nut flours. The following excerpt is from chapter 8, “Nut and Coconut Flours.”
Full disclosure: I love coconut and coconut cookies and simply cannot choose a favorite crunchy coconut confection. There are only five ingredients and not a bit of flour in these easy-peasy, super-crunchy cookies. Keep them on hand to dunk, smear with peanut butter, make ice cream sammies, or dip in dark chocolate.
• 3 tablespoons (45 grams) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing the foil
• 3 large egg whites
• 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (100 grams) unsweetened dried shredded coconut
• 1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• Baking sheets
Notes: Nonstick foil is the easier type to use and can be wiped and reused over and over again.
You can sprinkle the cookies before baking with a pinch of black or white sesame seeds, or substitute 1/2 cup (55 grams) finely chopped pecans or almonds with 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract for an equal amount of the coconut.
1. Line the baking sheets with regular foil (dull side facing up) and grease the foil lightly but thoroughly with vegetable oil spray or butter. Or line the baking sheets with nonstick foil (nonstick side up, see Notes).
2. Mix the egg whites with the coconut, sugar, and salt until well blended. Stir in the butter. Let the batter rest for at least 15 minutes to allow the coconut to absorb moisture (or cover and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days).
3. Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
4. Stir the batter well. Drop level tablespoons 3 inches apart on the lined sheets. Spread the batter to a diameter of 3-1/2 inches (about 1/4 inch thick).
5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cookies are mostly golden brown on top — a few pale patches are okay. Rotate the sheets from front to back and top to bottom about halfway through the baking time. If the cookies are not baked enough, they will not be completely crisp when cool.
6. Slide the foil sheets onto racks and let the cookies cool slightly or even completely before removing them.
7. To retain crispness, put the cookies in an airtight container as soon as they are cool. They may be stored airtight for at least 1 month.
More from Flavor Flours:
Reprinted with permission from Flavor Flours: A New Way to Bake with Teff, Buckwheat, Sorghum, Other Whole & Ancient Grains, Nuts & Non-Wheat Flours by Alice Medrich and published by Artisan Books, 2014.