|Chocolate Ganache Macaroons|
|Chocolate Macaroons filled with Fleur de Sel Caramel|
This week Bella and I had our first go at making French macaroons. I’ve always been so intimidated by them. I mean, all the macaroons I’ve seen in French bakeries are just so perfect. After seeing this post on Slim Paley, however, I just had to have some of these Morsels of Deliciousness. And I’m pleased to report there’s nothing to fear, they are a snap to make! Who knew!?
Let the batter sit for 15 minutes
Fill with caramel or ganache like I did, or use buttercream frosting, jam, or whatever else you fancy. Check out this menu from Laduree Paris for inspiration! Laduree is THE place for macaroons.
Isn’t this window display GORGEOUS! I have got to make some of those macaroon towers. For a Parisian Valentine’s Day party perhaps!
So if you can’t get to Paris, I suggest you make some Parisian Macaroons…
I used Martha Stewart’s recipe, which I found very well written and easy to follow:
makes about 35
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup superfine sugar
- Pulse confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 2 times.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.
- Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip, and pipe 3/4-inch rounds 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, dragging pastry tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macaroons are crisp and firm, about 10 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat for 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees.
- Let macaroons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. (If macaroons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macaroons.)
- Sandwich 2 same-size macaroons with 1 teaspoon jam, ganache, or other filling. Serve immediately, or stack between layers of parchment, wrap in plastic, and freeze for up to 3 months.
Piping the perfect macaroon takes a little practice. Treat it as you would a rosette, bringing the pastry tip to the side of the circle, rather than forming a peak, to finish.
Chocolate: Substitute 3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder for 1/4 cup of the almond flour.
*Chocolate: Substitute 3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder for 1/4 cup of the almond flour.
- Coconut: Substitute 2 tablespoons desiccated unsweetened coconut for 2 tablespoons of the almond flour, and add 1/2 teaspoon rum; sprinkle with additional coconut before baking.
- Peanut: Substitute an equal amount finely ground unsalted peanuts (peanut flour) for the almond flour.
- Pistachio: Substitute 1/2 cup finely ground unsalted pistachios (pistachio flour) for 1/2 cup of the almond flour, and add 2 to 3 drops forest-green gel-paste food coloring.
- Raspberry: Add 1 tablespoon fresh raspberry puree, strained, plus 3 to 4 drops dusty- rose gel-paste food coloring.
- Vanilla Bean: Add 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped, pod reserved for another use.
Suggested fillings for macaroons
- Chocolate: Chocolate Ganache