My mom and I took a class on french macarons in the beginning of May, and we've been hooked ever since. I had seen many bloggers make macarons on their sites, and I thought they were simply beautiful. So when I was randomly searching through the Sur La Table summer cooking classes and I saw a class on macarons, I immediately called my mom to make sure she didn't work that day, then signed us both up. It was probably the most fun I've ever had in a kitchen.
Our nearest Sur La Table is in Columbus, so my mom and I headed up there in the early afternoon, checked into our hotel, and then drove over to the store for our 6:30 class. We started off splitting into two groups of 4, and then dove right into making the macarons. Our group, consisting of my mom, myself, and two very friendly ladies, made chocolate macarons with a chocolate custard cream filling, and raspberry macarons with a raspberry puree filling. The other team made green tea macarons with a matcha buttercream and coconut macarons with a coconut rum buttercream. I have to say, the green tea macarons were my favorite, but they were all SO delicious.
My mom and I had so much fun at our class, that right when we got home we had to start making our own. Coincidentally, my cousin was having a house warming party the next day, so we thought it would be a wonderful idea to take our macarons. We decided upon the chocolate but then made our own chocolate swiss buttercream to put in the middle, and they were a hit. Granted, we burned the second batch because we had them in the oven a couple of minutes longer than needed, but the first were awesome. Everyone loved them, and my mom and I definitely took the opportunity to gloat about our new hobby.
The next week, I decided to make the chocolate and the green tea macarons, and the green tea batch turned out great. Yet again, I burned the second pan of the chocolate, and they had to be thrown away. It is my goal now to figure out what the heck I'm doing wrong, and why it only seems to be the chocolate that's doing it.
My new camera came in the mail last week and my mom and I thought that it would be the perfect first post for my blog to make none other than our new favorite treat. So on Tuesday, we got the kitchen all cleaned up after dinner only to dirty it again after our baking. This time was different than our other times though, this time included pictures, pictures to share with you all. After we were done with the toughest part, measuring out the ingredients, using the food processor, and sifting everything twice, we were ready to begin the actual making of the macarons. We made the green tea with our leftover swiss buttercream from last week. And they were delish, if I do say so myself. My mom then packaged up a handful in two plastic chinese food containers, and took them to her favorite coworkers. They loved them as well, which is a big confidence booster.
This is the recipe that was given to me during our class, but I made a few adjustments for the better. I hope if anyone makes this that they enjoy them as much as my family and friends did. Please enjoy.
Green Tea Macarons
makes 24 sandwiches
3 oz. almond flour
5.2 oz. powdered sugar
1 packet green tea
3 large egg whites (3 oz.)
Pinch cream of tartar
2.2 oz. granulated sugar
Green food coloring (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare sheet pans with parchment paper.
Pulse powdered sugar and almond flour in a food processor until a fine powder. Add green tea and sift mixture twice. Set aside.
In a mixer, whisk egg whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until foamy. Gradually add sugar. Once all sugar is added, scape sides of bowl and add green coloring (I like to use a toothpick and scrape it onto the whisk attachment). Increase speed to high and whisk until stiff, firm, glossy peaks form.
Macaronnage: Pour the flour mixture one-third at a time over the whites, and fold using a large spatula until the mixture is smooth and shiny. Fold a bit more until it is firm, but drips slowly from the spatula.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag with a round tip (Wilton #12) and pipe 1-1/3 inch rounds on the sheets. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes. The dough should not stick to your finger when lightly touched.
Decrease oven temperature to 325 degrees F right before putting the macarons in, and put the baking sheet on the top rack in the middle of the oven. Bake for about 10 minutes (sometimes I found that it was closer to 8).
Let macarons cool on their baking sheets then frost with whatever filling you choose.
Chocolate Swiss Buttercream
makes enough to frost an entire cake, so I used it to full several batches of macarons
4 oz. egg whites
8 oz. sugar
1 oz. corn syrup
10 oz. (2.5 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Whisk together the egg whites, sugar, and corn syrup in a large bowl. Place the bowl over medium pan of simmering water, and heat, whisking constantly, until an instant-read thermometer registers 141 degrees F.
In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the egg white mixture on high until cooled to room temperature. With the mixer on high, add the butter one tablespoon at a time, whipping for a few seconds after each addition until just combined.
Continue to whip on high until light and fluffy. When it's reached that point, add the chocolate, melted but slightly cooled, and fold into the buttercream. Refrigerate until ready to use (this will set it up more, mine was pretty weak but stiffened up nicely in the fridge for about 20 minutes). Put into a pastry bag and pipe onto one side of the macaron, or use an offset spatula.
Until next time,