Scandinavian baking is one of my favourite styles, particularly as the days get darker and we descend towards Midwinter. Rachel Khoo’s Little Swedish Kitchen has been a much-used addition to my cookbook collection, and the Autumn and Winter chapters are very well-thumbed already! These white chocolate and berry coconut mountains are like a traditional macaroon but packed with ground almonds and sesame seeds for extra bite. Snowcapped with white chocolate and tempered by tart berries, they’re perfect for seasonal gifting – or delicious with a cuppa in your favourite Christmas mug (mine is from the lovely Sophie Allport). To make them, you will need:
100g golden caster sugar
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
zest of 1 lemon
200g desiccated coconut
150g sesame seeds
50g ground almonds
3 medium eggs
350g white chocolate
125g lingonberries or redcurrant.
Preheat the oven to 200C/Fan 180c/ Gas 6. Put the sugar, salt, lemon zest and butter into a saucepan and melt over a medium heat. Set aside.
Pour the coconut on to a large tray lined with baking paper and place in the oven for 5 minutes or until fairly well toasted. Keep a close watch, and stir to toast it evenly. When the coconut is ready, take out of the oven and pour into a large bowl with the sesame seeds and ground almonds. Mix, then pour in the melted butter and mix again. Add the eggs, then stir together until everything is well combined. Leave to cool completely.
Line a baking tray with baking paper. Form the mixture into 20 small pyramids (about 4cm high and 5cm in diameter) and set on the lined tray.
Place in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until slightly golden on the peaks and firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack while melting the chocolate.
Break up the chocolate and put into a small heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, ensuring the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Leave to melt, stirring occasionally. Once the chocolate has melted, dip the cakes into it and top each one with 3-4 berries of your choice.
The white chocolate and berry coconut mountains keep for several days in an airtight container. What are you baking for festive foodie gifting?
Recipe via Rachel Khoo.