Monday, 27 August 2012

Pink macarons - Rosa macarons

My sister Sara wanted to surprise her friend with something sweet for her birthday, so she asked me if I could show her how to make macarons. I have baked macarons a couple of times before, but I never really can tell whether the outcome will be a success or not. The macaron only has a couple of ingredients and is simple in theory, but it requires a little patience, correct measuring and a bit of time. This recipe yields about 30 macarons (if they all come out good). Always use a kitchen scales for measuring the ingredients.
We decided to make these macarons pink, both shells and filling.

Recipe for the macaron shells:

100gr egg whites (approx. 3 egg whites)
110gr ground almonds
200gr icing sugar
25gr caster sugar/granulated sugar
(food colouring if desired)

I normally use regular large sized eggs and separate the yolk and white well in advance, preferably 24h before use. If you are pressed for time or want an easier way out (and don't mind the cost) shops in Finland now also sell egg whites in a tetra pak. This is a handy option, especially if you don't intend to use the yolk in cooking or baking and are reluctant to chuck them. (waste not want not ;))

Egg whites ready to use


Start by separating the egg whites, covered with cling film in the fridge well ahead (or 24h before baking). I had these shop bought egg whites, so I only needed to measure the whites and leave them to get to room temperature for a couple of hours.

Use the kitchen scales and measure the other ingredients. Sieve the icing sugar and ground almonds separately. I had Sallinens ground almonds, and I have to say that they were pretty coarsely ground so I sieved the almonds maybe twice to get only the finest of the almond powder. Mix the icing sugar and almonds together in a bowl and set aside. Start by whisking the egg whites and add a little of the caster sugar. While whisking the whites keep adding the sugar little by little until properly mixed. Add colour at this stage if desired. Make sure not to whisk the whites too hard.
Carefully fold the almond/icing sugar in with the egg whites. The batter should be loose, but not runny. If it seems too hard, try to slowly mix it a little looser.
Transfer the batter into a piping bag and pipe the macarons on baking trays covered with parchment, to about the size of two euro coins. Tap the trays against the table to remove any air bubbles in the uncooked macarons.

Uncooked macarons drying on the tray.
Let the macarons rest approx. 30-60 minutes before baking.
Heat the oven to 140 degrees (centigrade). Bake the macarons in the middle of the oven for about 15 minutes. Cooking times may vary depending on the oven and consistency of the macarons. This usually works for me!:)
The macarons should not brown while baking, so if they do the oven might be too hot. Let the baked macarons cool completely before trying to remove them from the baking sheet.
I chose to fill these with a strawberry flavoured butter cream which I mixed with a little whipped cream to make it nice and smooth. Other fillings that I like using are, lemon curd (shop bought or home made) chocolate ganache, butter cream or jam.

Sweet pink macarons baked and filled and ready to go!  

The macarons can be stored unfilled in an airtight container or frozen with or without filling.

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