These are especially light and airy, and they smell wonderful as they bake, then cool in the oven. The recipe was a finalist in this year's crop of reader-submitted cookie recipes in December's Eating Well magazine.
Make Ahead: The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week. After 3 days, it's best to re-crisp them for 10 minutes in a 250-degree oven.
Servings: 30 cookies
- 4 large egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate, melted, for drizzling (see NOTE)
- 2 tablespoons trans-fat-free white chocolate chips or finely chopped white chocolate, melted, for drizzling (see NOTE)
Position oven racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat to 250 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
Combine the egg whites, cream of tartar, the coconut, almond and vanilla extracts and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until frothy.
Add the sugar 2 tablespoons at a time, beating to form a shiny, fairly stiff meringue. This can take 4 to 6 minutes. Remove the bowl from the mixer.
Sift the cocoa powder over the meringue, and use a flexible spatula to fold it in until the mixture is almost uniformly light brown. (It's okay if some streaks of white remain.) Transfer to a large resealable plastic food storage bag. Cut off 1/2 inch from one of the bottom corners. Use the opening to pipe 1 1/2-inch rounds of the batter onto the baking sheets, spacing the rounds 1 inch apart (15 to a sheet). Bake on the upper and lower oven racks for 50 minutes (no need to rotate the baking sheets), then turn off the oven and let the cookies cool in the oven for about 1 1/2 hours or until dry. The meringues will be slightly mounded.
Transfer to a wire rack with a sheet of parchment paper or baking sheet underneath. Drizzle the melted semisweet and white chocolate over the cooled cookies; let set before serving or storing.
NOTE: Melt the semisweet and white chocolates in separate small bowls in the microwave on MEDIUM for 20-second intervals, stopping to stir in between until evenly melted.
Adapted from a recipe in the December 2009 issue of Eating Well magazine.
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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