Home How-To Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

In the spirit of our new Joie de Vivre collection, we’re looking ahead to spring and reveling in the easy-breezy color palettes reminiscent of sunny, bloom-filled afternoons in Paris. Inspired by each of our new Joie de Vivre patterns, Oiseaux and Jardin, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite macaron recipes to help beat the winter blues, because what could be more quintessential “français” than a delicious and colorful macaron? Bon appétit!

 

Vanilla Almond Macarons

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

(photo via Kate’s Sweets)

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Ingredients 

Macarons:

  • 1 cup almond meal/flour
  • 1⅔ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • ¼ cup sugar

Filling:

  • 6 Tbsp. butter
  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • ¾ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1+ Tbsp. milk
  • food coloring, optional

 

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, sift together the almond meal and confectioners’ sugar; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or using a hand mixer, beat the egg whites on medium speed until very foamy and frothy. Gradually add the granulated sugar while the mixer is still on and beat until stiff peaks form and the mixture is glossy and has grown in volume, about 3 minutes.
  3. Remove the mixture from the electric mixer and gently but efficiently fold in the almond meal and confectioners’ sugar mixture. The mixture should be thick and rather stiff, most likely with air bubbles throughout.
  4. Scrape the mixture into a large piping bag and cut off the tip to make about a ½-inch diameter circle. Pipe the batter into small circles, about 1-inch diameter, onto silicone or parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing about 1½ inches apart. Let the piped macarons sit out for at least 1 hour, or until you can touch the tops of the shells and they’re hard.
  5. Preheat the oven to 285 degrees F. Bake the macarons in the middle rack of the oven, one sheet at a time, for 10 minutes, rotating the sheet at the halfway mark. Repeat with the other sheet. Transfer the silicone mat or parchment paper to a cool surface and then let the macarons cool completely before removing from the mat or paper.

Make the filling:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer or using an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat on medium-high speed until fluffy.
  2. Add the vanilla extract, food coloring, and enough milk for your desired consistency. Place in a piping bag and pipe onto cookies for easiest assembly, or spread on to cookies using a small knife. Sandwich together with an unfrosted cookie and serve.

 

Earl Grey Macarons

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Summer Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

(photo via Fig & Farrow)

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Shell Ingredients:

*2 egg whites at room temperature.
* 3/4 c. almond flour
* 1 c. confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)
* 1/4 c. granulated sugar
* Approximately 1 to 1/2 tbsp. loose earl grey tea leaves.

Filling:
* (at least) 2oz. White chocolate
* 4 tbsp. butter room temperature.
* 1/4 cup (approximate) confectioners’ sugar
* at least 1/4-1/2 tsp. leftover finely ground tea leaves.

 

Instructions:

* Preheat oven to 325

*Mix together almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, and a large pinch or two of the     loose tea leaves. Pulse until flour mixture is blended together (about 4-5 4 second pulses is my preference.)

*Sift flour mixture into a separate bowl with a fine wire mesh strainer making sure that any large pieces of tea leaves fall back through the strainer. Set aside any leftover ground tea leaves.

*Place granulated sugar and leftover ground tea leaves or another large pinch in the food processor and pulse until most of the tea leaves are finely ground into the sugar.

*Sift this mix into a separate bowl making sure that no large tea pieces end up in the sifted sugar.

*Place egg yolks in a bowl and whisk until frothy.

* Using a mixer with at least 3 speeds, whip eggs until they hold soft peaks.

* Slowly add granulated sugar and tea mixture into the blender and beat until eggs and sugar become glossy and holds stiff peaks.

*Using a large flat (preferably no wood) spatula gently fold almond flour and sugar mixture into into the meringue until it creates a smooth batter.

* Carefully pour batter into a pastry bag with a plain large tip and pipe desired size circles onto a baking sheet covered in parchment paper.

* Rap baking sheet against work surface to release any air bubbles in piped shells and also helps form the pied (foot) on the bottom of the cooked shells.

* Let stand for at least 25-30 min. (This is crucial as it creates a smooth stiffened crust on the top of the uncooked shells.)

* Bake for 10-15 minutes in preheated oven checking every 5 min. If browning begins to occur early on reduce oven temp slightly. Large temperature fluctuations can cause shells to not turn out properly so be sure it is only by 1-2 degrees. Believe me it will make a difference.

* Remove shells from oven and allow to cool completely (for about 10 min.) before gently peeling them off of the parchment paper.

 

Filling Instructions:

* Add softened butter and confectioner’s sugar in a blender and beat together until pale and fluffy.

* In a double boiler or microwave melt white chocolate until it is smooth and liquid like.

* Remove chocolate from heat and allow to cool for a few seconds (until you can easily dip your finger in without being burned) and add to butter and sugar mixture.

*Add any finely ground leftover tea leaves into mixture and blend until smooth.

* Pipe filling onto one macaron shell and add a lid.

 

Strawberries & Cream Macarons

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

(photo via Tutti Dolce)

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Ingredients:
3/4 ounce freeze dried strawberries
115g almond flour
230g powdered sugar
144g egg whites, at room temperature
72g sugar
2g (1/2 tsp) salt
1 or 2 drops burgundy gel food coloring (optional)
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
pinch of salt
1 1/3 cups powdered sugar

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 280°F and fit a large disposable pastry bag with a round tip. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. On a third sheet of parchment paper, trace out 24 1.5-inch circles (use a round cookie cutter or stencil as a guide), spaced 1 inch apart. Set aside as a master guide.

Process freeze dried strawberries and almond flour in a food processor until finely ground. Use a fine mesh sieve or sifter to sift strawberry-almond flour mixture and powdered sugar together twice; use a firm spatula to push any large particles through. Set aside.

Combine egg whites, sugar, and salt in a large mixer bowl fitted with wire whip attachment. Whip for 3 minutes on medium speed (4 on a KitchenAid), until egg whites begin to foam. Increase speed to medium-high (7 on a KitchenAid) and whip for 3 minutes, until meringue forms soft peaks. Increase speed to 8 and whip for another 3 minutes. Turn off mixer and add gel food coloring; whip another 1 to 2 minutes on high speed to evenly distribute color until meringue is stiff and dry. The meringue should clump in the center of the wire whip attachment; knock against mixer bowl to release.

Add dry ingredients to meringue all at once. Use a rubber spatula to fold dry mixture into meringue, smearing the mixture against the side of the bowl to knock the air out (you want to deflate the whites, so don’t worry about folding them gently). After 25 folds, your mixture may still look lumpy. Continue to fold about 10 to 12 more times, checking texture after each fold. The batter is ready when it holds its shape when spooned onto itself and slowly flattens out after 15 to 20 seconds. If the batter is stiff and doesn’t flatten out, it’s undermixed. If the batter is runny and fluid, it’s overmixed and won’t hold a shape.

Transfer half the batter to pastry bag. Slide master guide of circles between baking sheet and parchment paper. Hold piping bag vertically and pipe batter to within 1/8″ from the edge of the circle. Carefully remove master guide from underneath piped circles and transfer to second baking sheet, repeating with remaining batter. Remove guide and save for future use. Tap pans sharply on counter; rotate 90 degrees and tap two more times (to deflate air bubbles and prevent cracked shells).

Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, until you can cleanly peel the parchment paper away from the macaron. Place pans on wire racks and cool completely before removing shells. For the cream cheese frosting, beat butter, cream cheese and salt in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low; gradually add powdered sugar 1/3 cup at a time and beat just until smooth.

When ready to assemble, fit a large disposable pastry bag with a round tip and fill with frosting. Pipe about a tablespoon of frosting onto the bottom of half the shells, then sandwich with remaining shells. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to three days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

 

Pistachio Macarons

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Summer Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

(photo via Food Nouveau)

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INGREDIENTS

3 egg whites (from large eggs)

7.2 oz powdered sugar

4.4 oz almond flour

0.7 oz unsalted and shelled pistachios

1 oz granulated sugar

1.6 oz unsalted and shelled pistachios

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup butter

½ tsp pure pistachio extract (optional)

 

Instructions

Make the pistachio buttercream: Place the pistachios and powdered sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Process until the pistachios are finely ground.

Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or use a hand mixer to do so), then add the pistachio/sugar mixture and mix until creamy and fluffy. Add the pistachio extract and mix well. If the buttercream seems a bit stiff, add some heavy cream or milk by the teaspoon until you reach the right consistency. Transfer to an airtight container and reserve until ready to assemble the macarons. (The buttercream can be made ahead; refrigerate, but make sure to return to room temperature at least an hour before using.)

 

Make the macarons: In the bowl of a food processor, add the powdered sugar, almond flour, and pistachios, and process until the pistachios are finely ground. Sift mixture to make sure no lumps or bigger bits of almonds or pistachios are left.

Whisk the egg whites on medium/high speed for a minute or two, add a tablespoon of the granulated sugar, continue beating and add the remaining sugar slowly. Beat until the egg whites are stiff, dense and creamy. Mix in green and yellow gel food coloring: for light green, try 6 drops yellow to 1 drop green, adding more using this ratio until you reach a nice pistachio color.

Delicately fold in the nuts/sugar mixture in 2 or 3 additions. Slide your spatula all the way to the bottom of the bowl and comes back up several times to make sure no pockets of dry ingredients remain and the color is evenly blended.

Prepare the baking sheet by lining them with parchment paper. Slide macaron templates under the parchment paper, if using.

Transfer the macaron batter in a pastry bag fitted with a ½-inch [1.25-cm] round tip. Pipe 1½-inch [3.8-cm] rounds of batter, evenly spaced but still close to one another as they will not expand much

Carefully slide the macaron templates off the baking sheets, if you used them. Let the shells rest on the baking sheets for 20 to 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 275°F with a rack set to the middle position. Bake the macarons for 13 to 16 minutes, rotating the pan after 10 minutes.

Let the shells cool completely to room temperature before assembling them with the buttercream, about an hour. Pair same sized shells together and assemble with buttercream. Store the assembled macarons in an airtight container and refrigerate for one night before indulging. Always bring the macarons back to room temperature before serving.

 

Blueberry Macarons

Springtime Sweets: French Macaron Recipes to Beat the Winter Blues | Annie Selke's Fresh American Style

(photo via Baking a Mess)

Read the original post here!

 

Ingredients:

For the Macarons

  1. 2 x 40g egg whites
  2. 100g almonds
  3. 100g icing sugar
  4. 100g caster sugar
  5. 35ml water
  6. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  7. a few drops of purple and blue food coloring

For the filling

  1. 1-2 hand fulls of blueberries
  2. 50g caster sugar
  3. juice of 1/2 a lemon
  4. 1 tub mascarpone
  5. 60ml double cream
  6. 50g icing sugar

 

For the shells

  1. Process the almonds and icing sugar together in a food processor for about 30 secs.
  2. In a bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl with an electric whisk start beating the first 40g of egg whites.
  3. While doing this place a pan on the hob with the water and sugar and bring to the boil, monitoring the temperature as you do so. Once it passes 105 degrees celsius, increase the speed of the whisk (the egg whites should form stiff peaks at this point).
  4. When the sugar syrup reaches 115 degrees take it off the hob and pour into the egg whites in a thin stream, whilst still whisking on a high speed (it’s definitely useful to have either a stand mixer or 2 pairs of hands at this point!). The egg whites should become glossy meringue, continue mixing for about 5 mins so that the mixture cools down.
  5. In another bowl, mix together the icing sugar and almonds, remaining egg whites, vanilla and food colouring to form a paste.
  6. Using a rubber spatula, spoon about a third of the meringue into the bowl with the paste and mix well, this loosens the mixture. Then add the remaining meringue and fold in until fully incorporate, your mixture should be runny enough to slowly fall off the spatula but not so runny that it falls straight off!
  7. Place the mixture into a piping bag and pipe 3-4 cm circles about 2 cm apart, onto a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper (you might need 2). Once the whole tray has been piped, bang the bottom onto the work surface 2 or 3 times to get out air bubbles, then set aside for 30mins to an hour so that the macarons form a skin, this is what helps them bake properly and get feet!
  8. Once your macarons have a skin (nothing should come off on your hand if you lightly touch them with your finger) bake at 150 degrees for 14 mins.
  9. Allow to cool completely whilst still on the greaseproof paper, if you try to take them off too early you might pull the bottoms off!

For the filling

  1. Place the blueberries in a pan on a medium heat with the sugar and lemon juice. Heat until the blueberries all burst and you have a dark purple colored syrup.
  2. Once the syrup has completely cooled, mix with the mascarpone until fully incorporated.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the cream with the icing sugar until it’s stiff, then fold in the blueberry mixture.
  4. Place into a piping bag and pipe onto a macaron shell, then sandwich together with another shell.

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