Who else agrees with me that these macs look like little pots of make-up? They started off flat pink and red for some Valentine’s macarons, but then I glammed up a few with some shimmer and shine for added drama. For the filling, I wanted something equally dark and dramatic so I went with a sour cherry and dark chocolate ganache.
These glam macs are pulling double duties as Valentine’s macarons and celebratory macarons because I finally turned in my manuscript! The book has been such a labor of love. It’s taken me a little longer than I wanted, but I’m so pleased with the recipes and I think you guys will be too. It’s set for release Fall 2017, stay tune for more details!
Until then, yay to being off of the crazy train and back to a normal life!
Quick note on the recipe, up until now, I’ve only shared the French method, but today I’m sharing the Italian method. I actually prefer the latter because it seems more stable and more error-proof against hollows. Here are few additional notes and tips against hollows.
- KNOW YOUR OVEN. This means buy an oven thermometer to check for an accurate reading. This sounds simple, but know and experiment with your oven. For example, I have a bottom heating oven, as a result I bake on two baking sheets to insulate the heat. But when I bake in a convection oven I don’t need to double up pans like that.
- Parchment vs. Silpat: I prefer Silpats because they guarantee a flat even bottom where parchment can sometimes cause the bottom of the shells to have a slight wave from the parchment rippling (even when I’ve tried spraying non-stick down under the paper to keep it flat).
- Egg whites: I don’t age them, but I do make sure they are room temperature. Additionally, I’m not sure what the science is but the Italian method of heating the egg whites definitely seems to make a difference in stabilizing the egg whites for the meringue portion. With the Italian method, I don’t notice the the little bubbles that need to be rapped out or individually popped (Seriously, who has time to sit there and poke out every little bubble??).
- Macronage: The folding – do it with intention. Save the gentle folding for sponge cakes. The idea here is to beat the air out of the batter. The batter is ready when it resembles thick cake batter.
- Resting: I don’t rest or skin whether I’m using the French or Italian method. I fold, pipe and bake right away.
- Baking: I bake one tray at a time, because my oven heats from the bottom. When using a convection oven, I’m able to bake two trays at a time.
Black Cherry Macarons
- 90g almond flour
- 90g powdered sugar
- 30g egg whites
- 90 g granulated sugar
- 30 ml water
- 30 g egg white
- 1 g dehydrated egg whites
Heat oven to 315 degrees F.
To make the paste: In a large bowl, sift together almond flour and powdered sugar. (If using powdered food coloring, mix it now.) Add the egg whites and fold until mixture resembles a paste (If using colored food gel, mix it in now).
To make the meringue: Place sugar in a small sauce pan and pour the water over it. Do not stir. The sugar will absorb the water. Turn heat to medium high, clip a thermometer to pan and cook without stirring. Using the handle of the pan swirl pot every once in a while. Bring mixture to 240 degrees F.
While syrup is cooking, place egg whites and dehydrated egg whites into a stand mixer bowl fitted with a whisk attachment and beat on low until egg whites start to form bubbles. Increase speed to medium and beat until mixture resembles well lathered shampoo. Increase speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form.
Remove syrup from heat once it comes to temperature. Turn mixer to low and slowly drizzle syrup down the side of the bowl. Be patient, and don't be tempted to pour the syrup in too quickly otherwise it will harden against the side of the bowl. Once all the syrup is poured in, increase speed to high and beat until meringue is stiff and glossy.
Add half of the meringue to the paste and fold to combine. Add in remaining meringue and fold until batter resembles thick cake batter.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag and pipe onto Silpat. Rap baking sheet on the counter top a few times to get rid of any excess air bubbles.
Bake macaron cookies one tray at a time until macarons do not give when gently pressed and easily peel away from Silpat. Remove from oven and let macarons cool on baking sheet.