Lemony Macaroon Cups with Blueberry Basil Compote
I've noticed that there are a lot of macaroon recipes that float around the interwebs every Easter/Passover. I suppose this makes them a sort of quintessential spring recipe, both infinitely customizable and infinitely easy to make. All of the recipes out there are pretty much made up of sugar, egg whites, and coconut. This is fine for the average person, but I like to think that you come here for the not-so-average take on things.
As I have developed my baking style over the past couple of years, I've tried to practically sever any ties with animal products in my baked goods (with the exception of honey). This means that I'm not going to whip up a batch of macaroons using egg whites anymore. That would be too easy. Instead, I've combined some unconventional ingredients to give you what, in my opinion, is a superior macaroon. Since I couldn't leave well enough alone and just give you some vegan and grain free macaroons, I decided to form them into cups and fill them with a blueberry basil compote. I think if you bring these to an Easter, Passover, or spring get-together, you just may be the hero of the meal.
You'll notice that the cups use coconut butter, not coconut oil. Though it can be bought in stores, you can also make it at home if you have a food processor. Simply place unsweetened dried coconut flakes into your food processor and process about 5 to 8 minutes until the butter forms, making sure to scrape down the sides as you go. About 2 and 2/3 cups dried coconut will produce roughly 1 cup of coconut butter.
macaroon cups adapted from this recipe
for the macaroon cups
1/2 cup softened coconut butter
heaping cup unsweetened shredded coconut
pinch of sea salt
zest of 1 small lemon
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
6 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla (optional)
for the compote
12 oz frozen or fresh blueberries (thawed if using frozen)
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
handful of large basil leaves (5 or 6) plus more for garnish
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees and grease 8 cups in a 12 cup muffin tin. Combine the coconut butter, lemon juice, maple syrup, and vanilla (if using) in a bowl until smooth and thick. In a separate bowl, combine the coconut, sea salt, and lemon zest. Add the coconut butter mixture to the coconut and mix until a thick dough forms. When you stir it, it should start forming a ball on its own. Divide the macaroon mixture into 8 equal portions. Pick up a portion of the dough, roll it into a ball, then place it in the greased tin. Gently press it down with your fingers so that it makes a cup in the tin. You don't have to come all the way up the sides because it will puff a bit as it bakes. Continue with the rest of the macaroon dough. It should fill 8 cups, depending on the size of your pan. Place the pan in the oven and bake the macaroon cups for 25 to 30 minutes. They should be puffed and golden. Cool the macaroon cups in the pan completely before removing them gently with a knife.
To make the compote, combine the blueberries, maple syrup, and lemon juice in a sauce pan/pot over medium heat. Gently mash the blueberries with the back of a fork. Cook the blueberries, stirring often, until the mixture thickens and reduces slightly. This should take 8 to 10 minutes. You will know it's ready when you drag the spoon through the compote and it doesn't immediately fill in the space left behind. Remove the compote from the heat and add the basil leaves. Let the basil steep in the compote for 2 to 3 minutes, then remove and discard them. Cool the mixture before using. The compote can be made several days ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator.
To assemble, fill each macaroon cup with the compote and then garnish it with a few small basil leaves. Can be served room temperature or chilled. Makes 8 macaroon cups.