“Be a Macaron in a cookie-cutter world”
Yes, it has come on that time again. Macarons, a favorite of mine to bake. Incidentally, I have not baked macarons in so long; I forgot a very important step that has caused these little ones to take on an odd shape. But never mind the way they look, these macarons are one of the tastiest that I’ve made.
There are Earl Grey tea leaves in the macarons shells, giving it that speckled look, and then a lemon buttercream filling that would make anyone's mouth water. I used one bag of Stash’s double bergamot Earl Grey tea. The bergamot in this tea really lifts the flavor and gives off a scent that is heavenly.
If you would like tips and tricks on making macarons see my previous post where I make some fall macarons for more detailed instructions. The important step that I missed this go-around was not flattening out my piped macaron circles. When these little beauties baked they still had a peak that my piping bag left and formed a chocolate kiss shape instead of having a flat top and bottom. To avoid this, take your finger and wet it slightly with cool or lukewarm water and gently dab the peaks until they flatten. This will ensure that your macarons will have smooth shells for sandwiching.
But ignoring the odd shape that these have the macarons taste amazing, and are definitely a top choice to make while serving tea. Enjoy, and keep baking!
Ingredients for Macaron Shells
⅔ cup ground almonds
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon earl grey loose leaf tea
3 large egg whites, room temperature
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit your baking sheet. Draw 1-inch circles on the paper, spacing them at least ½ inch apart.
If you have almond flour then skip this step. In a food processor, grind almonds, tea, and powdered sugar together to a fine powder.
Sift the mixture through a medium-mesh sieve twice. Set aside.
In a stainless-steel mixing bowl, beat egg whites on high speed until they are foamy. Gradually add granulated sugar to the egg whites. Beat egg whites on high speed until they reach stiff, glossy peaks, about one minute. You can use a hand mixer or a stand mixer.
Add vanilla and stir lightly. When the meringue is stiff, firm, and has a glossy texture it is done.
Add half of the sifted flour mixture from step 2. Stir it with a spatula while scooping it up from the bottom of the bowl, folding the flour mixture into the meringue to not knock any air out of it.
Add the rest of the flour and mix it lightly in a circular motion.
When you run out of flour, press and spread out the batter against the bowl’s sides. Scoop the batter from the bottom and turn it upside down. Repeat this process about 15 times. (Tip: If the macaronage step is repeated less than 10 times the baked macarons will lackluster. However when it is repeated more than 20 times oil stains may remain on the pastry's surface when the macarons are baked.)
When the batter becomes nicely firm and drips slowly as you scoop it with a spatula the mixture is done.
Put batter into a piping bag with 0.4-inch tip (Tip: Twist bag to hold the tip tightly, this prevents the batter from leaking out. After the batter is in clip end of the bag) and squeeze out batter onto the center of circle templates. (batter will spread)
Rap the baking sheet firmly against the counter.
Dry the batter at room temp, uncovered, for 15-30 minutes. A slight crust should form on top of them. If batter circles do not stick to your finger the drying process is complete. (Tip: The batter is settled when no tips can be seen in the circles.)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Bake Macarons for 10-15 minutes, flipping tray around halfway through the bake that they bake evenly.
Once out of the oven, allow macarons to cool before filling and sandwiching.
Ingredients for Lemon Buttercream
1 cup (2 sticks) of butter
3 cups of powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons of milk
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon of lemon juice
Beat butter in a mixer until creamy.
Add powdered sugar a cup at a time, alternating between milk
Add vanilla and lemon juice. Beat until smooth.
Once macaron shells have fully cooled put frosting in a piping bag with a star tip on one side of the macaron and put another on top.