Southerners love ambrosia, a mélange of sliced juicy-sweet oranges and grated coconut. The sweet salad has been a part of southern Christmas traditions for the better part of two centuries, and it was fun to use the coconut-orange combo in a new way. Add some finely grated orange peel to classic coconut macaroons, then drizzle the cookies with bittersweet chocolate for a festive finish!
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel
3 large eggs
24 ounces sweetened flaked coconut (about 6 cups firmly packed)
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 325°F. Line 3 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Add sugar and salt; beat until blended. Beat in orange peel, then eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in coconut. Drop batter onto sheets by tablespoonfuls, spacing 1 1/2 inches apart.
Bake macaroons, 1 sheet at a time, until golden on bottom and browned in spots, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool completely on sheets.
Using fork, drizzle chocolate over macaroons. Chill on sheets until chocolate is firm, about 30 minutes.