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Friday, March 2, 2012

My Macaron Method!

Wednesday I left you with the question of whether I could reproduce my workshop macarons at home.  Today we have the answer.  Yes, I can! 

Sure, it was a little more difficult to do this on my own.  I was wishing that I hadn't gotten rid of my hand mixer while I was whisking the meringue.  All on my lonesome, my arm got pretty tired!  I had to keep switching between left and right arms.  I also learned that I am not ambidextrous when it comes to whisking things.  My left arm is terribly uncoordinated and not at all good at whipping egg whites.  I'll have to give it a bit more practice.

Boyfriend helped to style this particular photograph

The batter was flowing like lava, I think.  I'm still a fan of the disappearing line method for testing the batter consistency.  The batter piped well, forming nice round shells.  The shells dried up in thirty minutes and when I put them in the oven I was hoping for the best.  With my fingers crossed, I set the timer for seven minutes and walked away. 

When I came back to turn the pans I was thrilled to see round tops and pretty, frilled feet!  I can do this at home!  While this isn't simplest recipe, requiring you to heat the meringue over a water bath, I choose to go with a consistent recipe rather than an easy, unreliable one.

Haven't found a favorite macaron recipe yet?  Give this one a try!  I know that this is my go to recipe from now on.  Thank you DessertTruck!

One Year Ago: Gorgonzola Risotto

Peach Macarons
Adapted from The Dessert Truck Works

I flavored these macarons with Celestial Seasonings peach tea.  I've done this in the past with a few of their fruity flavored teas and it works perfectly!  Be sure to stop by the tea section of your supermarket to find some new flavors for your next batch of macs!

You'll notice that the ingredients are listed in grams, as is usual with a macaron recipe.  It make the scientist in me so happy to weigh things in grams!  Also, I cracked and separated my eggs on Sunday and baked these macs on Saturday.  This gave the protein in the egg whites plenty of time to loosen up.  After sitting for six days in the fridge, these egg whites were almost as runny as water.  I've been told that fresh egg white work just as well, but I like to age mine for at least a few days.

125 g almond flour
125 g confectioner's sugar
3 packets of peach tea
50 g egg whites

50 g egg whites
110 g granulated sugar

Powdered orange food coloring
dash of powdered red food coloring

Combine almond flour, confectioner's sugar and contents of the peach teabags in the bowl of a food processor.  Whir for about 1 minute, until everything is combined.  Sift mixture through a medium sieve to break up the large pieces.  Just toss anything that remains in the sieve into the bowl with the sieved stuff.  Stir the dry mixture with 50 g egg whites and set aside.

Bring a 4-quart pot of water to a simmer.  In a medium bowl, start whisking 50 g of egg whites until they start to get foamy.  Add granulated sugar in three portions, continuing to to whisk.  Once all of the sugar is added, place the bowl over the simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn't sit in the water, but is a few inches above).  Whip the eggs until they reach stiff peak and are shiny and glossy white.  The meringue should be warm to the touch, but not hot.  If it starts to get too warm, but isn't yet at stiff peak, remove from the heat and continue whipping.

Add meringue to the almond flour mixture and begin folding it into the almond flour mixture.  Be sure to turn the bowl to combine all the ingredients together.  It will take between 30-40 turns to get to the desired consistency.  It should flow like cooling lava, or, if you draw a line down the center of the batter with your spatula, it should disappear within ten seconds.  Tint the batter with your desired color.  Transfer batter to

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats.  Pipe out 2-inch circles of batter, leaving an inch in between each circle.  Allow the newly piped shells to dry for 30 minutes before baking.

Preheat oven to 300 F and bake shells for 15 minutes, rotating halfway during the baking.  Once finished baking, remove macarons from the oven and immediately transfer the parchment paper/silpat off of the baking sheet.  Place macarons on a wire rack and allow them to cool completely before filling.

Ginger-Lemon Buttercream
A Wilde Original

8 tbsp butter, at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
3 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
1/2 tsp lemon zest

In a medium bowl, beat together butter and 1 cup powdered sugar until combined.  Add milk, vanilla extract, ginger and lemon zest and beat in.  Add remaining powdered sugar and whip until light and fluffy.  Transfer to a piping bag and pipe blobs of frosting on half of the macaron shells.  Top with a second shell.  Let the macarons sit in the fridge for at least 1 day to allow the flavors to meld.

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