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Home • Recipe • Scottish • Scottish Macaroons
Published by Amy
Whenever I ask people what recipe they would like to see the most on Baking with Granny, Scottish Macaroons is the one that is requested, more than any other recipe. Always with one stipulation…”the kind made with potato!”
Yes, you read that right…potato! Mashed potato to be exact. And in my experience, I find not overthinking it to be the best option. It works and it’s as simple as that.
Also, before we continue, for the avoidance of doubt; these are Scottish Macaroons (double O). These are not the French or Italian macarons that have exploded in popularity in recent years. Think more Lee’s Macaroon bars – fondant filling, chocolate dipped and covered in coconut. And less Mademoiselle Macaron – little almond meringues, in a myriad of flavours, sandwiched with luxurious fillings.
Ok, with the formalities out of the way, lets talk about what a Macaroon actually is…
Proper Scottish Macaroons are a potato fondant, dipped in chocolate and coated in coconut. The potato part is quite random but as potatoes are mostly water (about 80%, according to my fact-checking Google search), they actually make a pretty perfect fondant base, alongside of tonne of icing sugar. And don’t worry, you won’t actually taste the potato in the finished product!
In terms of potato though, you want to use a good floury potato, such as a Maris Piper, and not a waxy one. The starch of the potato lends itself nicely to the overall texture of your Macaroon, with floury ones being preferable for giving that distinctive “bite”.
I find boiling your potato with the skin on to the be best option. As I say, potatoes are mostly water anyway and the last thing you want is an overly soggy potato; skin on means you’re lowering the risk of that. You also want to make sure you mash your potato well – more so than you’ve ever mashed a potato in your life. If you have a potato ricer, this is the perfect recipe to dig that out for. Stray lumps of potato in the middle of a sweet Macaroon are no ones friend.
I’ve seen some suggestions that this is a good recipe to use up leftover mash potato. Now, I am all for using up leftovers and avoiding food waste but there’s two points I’d like to make in regards to that…
Firstly, who has leftover mash potatoes?! Such a thing doesn’t exist in my house, there’s always room for more mash potato on a plate.
Secondly, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t add a little butter, milk, salt, pepper…to their mash potatoes. With that in mind, I would say that leftover mash potato is better suited to a batch of Tattie Scones than it is to Scottish Macaroons. A freshly mashed, untainted, potato is most definitely favourable here.
One last point on our potatoes here… I have listed ingredient quantities in the recipe but every potato is different. It’s crucial that you keep that in mind when it comes to Macaroons. One potato may have more water content than the next, and as such more sugar will be needed to get the perfect fondant texture, and vice versa. Generally speaking the potato to sugar recipe will be around a 1:4 ratio but you can use more/less icing sugar as needed.
PotatoAs above, potatoes are what make this recipe what it is! A nice floury potato, such as a Maris Piper is perfect. Just remember to boil with the skin on and mash until completely smooth.
Icing SugarOr “powdered sugar” for our international bakers. You must, must, must use icing sugar over any other sugars in this recipe. The fine texture of icing sugar is what mixes with the potato, to make the perfect fondant. Just be sure to have a little extra to hand too, in case you have a particularly moist potato and need a little bit extra icing sugar to help form the fondant.
Dark ChocolateYou can opt for milk chocolate, if you prefer, however I find dark chocolate is a better choice; partly because the bitterness balances the sweetness of the fondant, but also because it has a lower fat content and sets better, keeping the coconut in place too.
Desiccated CoconutCoconut is what gives Macaroons that distinctive finish. You can use desiccated coconut as is but I prefer to toast half the coconut, giving it that warmer colour, as well as enhancing the flavours and textures too.
Been making them for years but like mine in small bars
Why is my mixture not hardening?
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Hello, I’m Amy, the voice-behind and creator-of Baking with Granny.
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