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Fruity, Nutty, Ginger, Cherry Macaroons, Gluten-Free

Best macaroons in the galaxy, and gluten-free, too.
For lactose-free macaroons, see below.

These delicious macaroons are my all-time favourite food. Yummy, chewy and sweet, these macaroons have enough substance to let you know you've had a good snack.

Ingredients:

   2 cups coarsely shredded coconut
   2 cups dessicated (finely shredded) coconut
   1 tin (415g) sweetened condensed skim milk
   1 1/2 cups mixed dried fruit
   125g hazelnuts, crushed (OR your favourite nuts)
   90g (3oz) glace (candied) cherries, halved
   90g (3oz) chopped preserved ginger in syrup
       OR 1 teaspoon ground (powdered) ginger

Method:
Turn the oven on. In a large bowl, stir everything except the condensed milk. Add the condensed milk and mix thoroughly.

Dollop teaspoonfuls of the macaroons mixture on to a non-stick baking tray. Bake for 145 C (300 F) until slightly golden - about 25 minutes. Macaroons burn easily, so watch them for the last five minutes. Turn off oven and leave the macaroons in oven for another half an hour. (That stops them from going soggy.) We have an old oven bought for $30 in a garage sale, and it helps to bake macaroons high in the oven.

Leave the macaroons on the baking tray to cool slightly - well, OK, you're allowed to eat ONE now - before putting on a cooling rack.

Note: Use preserved ginger in syrup if you can. Much better than ground ginger. Crystalised ginger, chopped small, also works OK. The macaroons look really tempting if you put half a cherry on top of each one, before putting them in the oven. You'll need about 40 cherry halves.

Lactose-free macaroons: Replace the condensed milk with 3/4 cup of caster sugar, two large beaten eggs and two teaspoons of lemon juice. Bake at 170 C (350 F) for about 16 minutes. Rescue them just before they burn.

Makes about 40.

Please e-mail this recipe to a friend and add the following:
I found this wonderful recipe at:
Best Gluten-Free Recipes
http://www.members.ozemail.com.au/~coeliac
Thanks.

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Allan Gardyne, Golden Beach, Queensland, Australia.
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Best Gluten-Free Recipes: http://members.ozemail.com.au/~coeliac