April 22, 2012 in Baking, desserts & sweets
Some people swear it’s macaron and some swear it’s macaroon and I am not going to vote either way. I just want to stick to swooning and yes, I did say I wasn’t going to go all technical and high-end, but I just have to share this food experience with you.
I am a very precise cook. No, not the type that will follow a recipe to the tee, no. Quite the contrary, I love taking recipes and using them as a rough guide, adding my own personal flair, and of course, taking into consideration all the special needs/intolerances/allergies/likes and dislikes of my family. But what I mean is that I love making challenging recipes. Recipes that test your culinary skills and know-how, and the one area where I get that is from baking. I don’t bake nearly enough as I would like, and when I bake, it normally has a kiddies theme. I’ve had some awesome requests for birthday cakes, like a cowboy boot, treasure chest, Barbie Mini Cooper, all with the accompanying decorations, cup cakes etc! So I have spent hours tediously trying to get the icing just right for my blue eyed little ones birthday parties – but I am digressing…
So when my beautiful Anna asked me to help her with an oral presentation for school, and she told me she had to prepare food for the class, I was very excited. This meant we would be scouring recipe books for suitable fare, discussing the viability of our chosen recipes, preparing an oral and best of all, Anna would be cooking! (Sadly, she does not share my passion for cooking, so this was my opportunity to see if I could ignite some interest)
In that same week, Anna had convinced me to start buying the YOU magazine, because, she said, it is a really useful magazine when it comes to school projects. Imagine my delight when I decided to read said magazine and found a recipe for macarons! (YOU Magazine: Feeding heart and soul, 9 Feb 2012 (which they adapted from Master Chef Australia)
This recipe fit the bill one hundred percent! It’s unique, and I was certain she would be the only one to make macarons, it’s cheap enough to make one for everybody in the class (you could choose to make a single dish or feed everyone) it is highly skilled, and it has WOW factor!
Needless to say it was a hit, and Anna really enjoyed helping me in the kitchen. I still doubt that she has inherited the food gene, but I am really not concerned about it, because I know she will definitely have good food memories – and that is what counts! I was so impressed, (being the first time I ever made macarons) that I immediately posted a pic on my BB status! And they tasted delicious too, so I will definitely make them again, and this time, I won’t have to send them all to school So without further ado, here is the recipe. The only thing that I would change is to rather use cream for the ganache as the Greek yoghurt makes it a bit tart and use white chocolate for a white filling.
- 225g icing sugar
- 130 g ground almonds, blitzed in a food processor until finer
- 3 egg whites
- 60 g castor sugar
- a few drops red food coloring
- 90 g dark chocolate, broken into squares (or 100 g white chocolate)
- 50 ml Greek yoghurt (use 30 ml if you use white chocolate)
Preheat the oven to 120ºC. Line a baking sheet with baking paper and grease with non-stick spray. Dust with cornflour.
Macaroons: Sift together the icing sugar and ground almonds 3 times. In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Spoon in the castor sugar, whisking until the mixture becomes thick, white and glossy. Add the food coloring and blend. Fold in the almond mixture a spoonful at a time. Put the mixture into a piping bag with a round nozzle and pipe 2 – to 3 cm circles on the baking sheet (don’t twirl the nozzle). Rapidly lift the nozzle so it doesn’t make a point. Leave the macaroons for 20 minutes or until they’ve formed a skin on the surface. Bake for 20 minutes or until the macaroons can be lifted with a palette knife. Leave to cool on the sheet.
Ganache: Melt the chocolate in the microwave. Stir every 15 seconds. Stir in the yoghurt and let the mixture cool until thick – in the fridge if you are in a hurry. Sandwich the macaroons with the ganache. Leave until firm before serving
Makes about 40
Have a great week!