Hope you had a good Easter. I was in Richmond, VA over the weekend attending a baby shower which actually felt more like college reunion. One of my friends requested macarons and I wanted to make something really special for this get together. 4 flavors of macarons were perfect with pastel color for Easter and Spring. Also different flavors means everyone will like at least one.
I made one batch basic buttercream. Divided buttercream into four parts for 4 flavors (lemon, raspberry, lavender-blackberry and mint chocolate). I had 4 different filling for center (lemon curd, raspberry preserve, blackberry preserve and ganache). You can half both macarons and the buttercream recipe and also make only one flavor. For lemon flavor you will need half recipe of this lemon curd (omit ginger). I used store bought raspberry preserve and blackberry preserve. Make 1/4 recipe of this ganache. I am only giving measurements in grams as macarons are all about perfection.
Adapted from Bouchon Bakery
Makes 100 macarons (200 shells)
90 grams egg white
200 grams + 45 grams granulated sugar
60 grams water
300 grams butter, room temperature and cut into ½ cubes
25 grams lemon curd
25 grams raspberry preserve
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1/4 teaspoon culinary lavender
Few drops green, purple color
For center filling
40 grams lemon curd
40 grams raspberry preserve
40 grams blackberry preserve
40 grams ganache
424 grams almond meal
424 grams confectioners’ sugar
164 and 180 grams egg whites, divided
472 grams granulated sugar, plus a pinch
316 grams water
1. Put egg whites in the bowl of stand mixer with whisk attachment.
2. Put 200 grams of sugar with water in a sauce pan over medium high heat, stir occasionally. Once temperature reaches 230°F, turn the mixer on medium speed. Slowly add the 45 grams of sugar and whip until egg whites are foamy. Once sugar syrup reaches 248°F, decrease the speed of mixer to medium low and slowly pour the syrup between the side of the bowl and whisk.Increase the speed to medium high and whisk for at least 15 minutes, until outside of bowl is room temperature.
3. Decrease the speed to medium low again and start adding few pieces of butter at a time. If the mixture starts looking curdled increase the speed for 1 minute. Decrease speed and continue with butter.
4. The buttercream can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and in freezer for a month. Defrost overnight in fridge.
5. Take the buttercream out of the fridge thirty minutes before you need to use it and place it in the bowl of a stand mixer. Allow it to soften and then mix on low-speed using paddle attachment, until it is the proper consistency.
1. These cookies are sandwiched together, so making them of equal size is important. I would recommend tracing circles using a small cookie cutter about 1 ¼ inch circle.
2. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Carefully process almond flour in food processor to get fine meal. Sift it with powdered sugar three times. Put 164 grams of egg white and mix well using spatula. It will be stiff, set aside.
3. Put 180 grams of egg white and pinch salt in very clean grease free bowl of stand mixer with whisk attachment. Over medium heat make syrup using 472 grams of granulated sugar and water. Once the syrup reaches 203°F start whisking the egg whites till it reaches soft peak on medium speed. Than lower the speed and keep whites moving.
4. Once the syrup reaches 248°F, remove from heat. Slowly pour the mixture over egg white, whisking at medium speed. While pouring aim for space right between bowl and whisk. Continue whisking for about 5 minutes, till it forms stiff glossy peaks.
5. Fold one-third meringue into the almond mixture using rubber spatula. Continue adding little at a time. Once you finish mixing all keep folding the mixture till you see ribbons forming when you lift your spatula. Avoid over mixing this batter, otherwise macarons won’t hold its shape.
6. Transfer the mixture to the pastry bag with the ½-inch tip. Pipe out enough mixture to fill in the circle. Bake one tray at a time for 9 to 12 minutes. As soon as you place the tray in oven, reduce temperature to 325°F. Repeat till you finish all the batter and preheat to 350°F again. Let cool completely.
Fill the macarons
1. Divide the buttercream into 4 parts, 125 grams each and put in 4 separate bowls. Add 50 grams of lemon curd to one, 50 grams of raspberry preserve to second, ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract and few drops green color to third and 1/4 teaspoon crushed lavender and purple food color to last one. Mix well. Adjust flavor and color to your liking.
2. Put different buttercreams and filling into different ziploc bags, you will have 8 bags.Turn half of them over, cut tip of buttercream bags 3/4 inch, filling bag 1/4 inch and pipe a ring not touching the edges. Put little lemon curd in center. Cover with another macarons shell and press gently. Repeat this with all other macarons shells.
3. Freeze the prepared macarons in freezer for at least 24 hours or up to 2 weeks. To eat defrost in refrigerator for 3 hours and bring to room temperature.