Do you love macarons? Seriously, who doesn't? They are little, cute, delicious, and look great at any party. It's hard to say no to macarons. That is why, when my friend Mindy Cone of Creative Juice asked if I wanted to be part of her blog tour for her new book Gourmet French Macarons, I just couldn't say no!
Mindy is a fabulous entertaining, food, and party stylist on the blog Creative Juice. She does a great job writing about how to entertain guest and kids with style and creativity! Sounds like a girl after my own heart, right? I just love her blog and all the fun things she does. And, can you believe that she not only wrote this adorable book, but she also photographed it. Talent. Serious talent.
And, to be even more sweet, Mindy has decided to share a delicious recipe from her book with us (found at the end of the post). I used the recipes in her book to create the macarons for my recent Princess party, but I haven't tried to make any chocolate macarons - but I am pretty sure that these will be my next ones to try.
But Gourmet French Macarons is a great book! It gives such a fun and creative spin on the classic French cookie. With over 75 creative designs and over 75 flavorful filling recipes, the combinations are endless.
What is also great about this book, is that it teaches you not only how to make adorable different festive shapes - such as apples, pumpkins, ghosts, trees, flowers, animals, cupcakes, etc. The book also teaches you how to make a perfectly round cookie, which is something I was having a difficult time with before this book.
Chocolate French Macarons with chocolate ganache filling modified from the book (some tips, tricks, and terminology excluded) Free 1.5 in circle template download for this recipe.
Chocolate French Macarons
100g of egg whites aged at room temperature
Pinch of Cream of tartar
35g of superfine sugar
110g of Almond flour
200g of Powdered Sugar
10g cocoa powder
1. Measure out all ingredients using a gram scale
2. Prepare the baking sheets by lining them with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Slide a printed 1 ½ inch template sheet underneath and set aside. Prepare piping bag to be filled and set aside.
3. Sift powdered sugar, almond mixture, and cocoa powder together two or three times through a sieve and set aside.
4. Place the egg whites in a large bowl or in stand mixer with wire whisk attachment. Whisk on low until egg whites become foamy. Add the pinch of cream of tartar. Continue to whisk until soft peaks form. Slowly add in the superfine sugar. Once all of the sugar is incorporated, scrape down the sides with a spatula.
5. Turn your mixer on medium-high and continue to whisk until you reach a stiff meringue. If adding liquid or gel food dye, do so toward the end of whisking.
6. Sift 1/3 of the almond flour, powdered sugar, and cocoa powder mixture through the sieve and into the meringue. Fold the dry mixture into the meringue. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Once all of the dry ingredients are incorporated, the batter will be thick and have a dull shine. Continue to fold. As you do so, the batter will loosen. Stop folding when the batter has a glossy sheen, a “lava-like” consistency, and falls in a ribbon like manner off the spatula.
7. Transfer the batter into a large pastry bag fitted with a round tip and pipe 1½ inch rounds on the parchment paper following the template.
8. When all of the rounds are piped on the parchment, rap the sheet pans evenly on work surface a few times. Remove templates from below your parchment paper carefully. Let the batter rest at room temperature for 20-40 minutes.
9. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Reduce temperature to 300 degrees and bake one sheet at a time for 12 minutes rotating the pan half way through.
10. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
11. Match up similar size shells into pairs and sandwich with filling.
About 4 dozen 1.5 in shells (two dozen sandwiched macaron cookies)
Chocolate Ganache Filling
100 g (3.5 oz) chocolate*
1½ Tbsp. heavy cream
Place chocolate in a heat proof bowl.
Boil cream and pour over chocolate.
Stir until all the chocolate has melted and texture is smooth**
When warm, pipe onto macaron shells.
*I prefer to use the mini chocolate chips when possible to speed up the process.
** If the cream is not able to melt all the chocolate, place bowl in microwave. Heat for 20 seconds on low power. Remove and stir. Repeat until chocolate is fully melted.