Sunday, June 15, 2014

Macaron's


Meringue based desserts are hugely popular in New Zealand and Australia. Their national dessert is Pavlova and the battle over who invented it was so hotly contested that an international court was involved eventually deciding in New Zealand's favour.
Another popular treat is the Macaron. The Macaron is basically a butter cream icing between two meringue cookies. They have become more available after being in the spotlight on Australia's "MasterChef" TV series. We watched MasterChef when we lived in NZ and when we moved in with our roommates in AUS they took us out to a live MasterChef  meet and greet where one the finalists of the season made Macaron's.   
There is some speculation about where they actually originated showing up in Switzerland and France but potentially by Italians. They come in every flavour you could imagine.
Jess and I decided to try and make a lemon version with a lemon butter cream. We had to play around with the proportions and ended up with perfect flavour, but we will still have to work at improving our recipe until we get smooth cookie tops with nice feet, (the bubbly ruffle at the bottom). I think I might have to crack and get a scale for the ingredients and should probably use a pastry bag instead of cutting off the corner of a Ziploc sandwich bag.

Ingredients:

Shells:
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/8 cup caster sugar
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • salt (tiny pinch)
  • gel food colouring (optional)
  • zest of one lemon (fully dried - about 2 hours)
 Icing:
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened (1/2 a stick)
  • 1 to 2 cups powdered sugar (plus more if needed)
  • 2-3 tsp whipping cream
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp lemon zest (two lemons)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • salt (tiny pinch)
 Directions:

Shells:
  1. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Process almonds, powdered sugar and dried lemon zest in a food processor until blended into a fine powder
  3. Combine egg whites and sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer and whip egg until stiff peaks form (about 10 min). Adding the food coloring during the last minute.
  4. Add the dry mixture into the egg whites.
  5. Using a spatula, smash dry ingredient into the egg white, flattening mixture. Then fold mixture onto itself until it becomes shiny (max 50 folds).
  6. Transfer the batter to a large piping bag and pipe onto the baking sheets.
  7. Slam the baking tray onto the counter 5 to 10 times to get the air bubbles out of the them. Let them sit for 30 mins.
  8. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
  9. Bake each sheet for about 18 minutes
  10. Remove the sheet from the oven & place it on a cooling rack, allowing the cookies to cool before removing them.
Lemon Butter-cream:
  1. Beat the butter on medium-high speed for 2 minutes. 
  2. Add the powdered sugar, half cup at a time until combined.
  3. Mix in the cream.
  4. Add lemon juice, zest, vanilla & salt, continue to beat on medium for another 1-2 minutes.

No comments:

Post a Comment