How was your New Year celeberation? For us, we went up to north Penang to join a year end countdown party which organized by Penang bloggers. We had a wonderful night. But I will post this event a bit later because there are too many pictures to sort out..I also brought them some homemade Siew Yok ( roast pork) and this macaron.
I was busy and keep doing macarons for the past two weeks. This is because some of batches I did were failed and with my never give up spirit, i keep experiment it and now I have more confidence to make nice macarons..Frankly, I don't appreciate macarons because they are too sweet for my liking, but I like to make them because i feel proud when i have beautiful macarons ^_^ and also there is demand (my niece, my daughter and her friends all like macarons). I also like to admire their nice skirts..
After several attempts, now i have no worry whether my macarons will develop skirt or not, but instead i afraid they crack after baked or macarons shells stick to the paper..
I prefer PH's recipe of using Italian meringue, because we don't need to wait for the macarons to dry the shells till touchable..From my experiences, my macarons never dry to touch even i waited for 1 hour..Now i just rest them for 30mins ( to stable the batter ) then i just proceed to bake..
After google for the reasons why macarons crack, some suggested to use double baking pans. I tried this method but it did not work for me, the macarons did not crack but the bottom still wet and were not able to peel it off with nice surface. Finally i settled this problem by putting double layers of baking paper (one with round macarons drawing for easy piping, another plain paper)..
Even in the same batch, sometime few macarons also do not have perfect bottom..
I also like this Italian buttercream with adding berries like blueberry, cherry or etc, so creamy and yummy..
This was how i packed them and brought them to Penang. I also putting them into a cooling box because i afraid the buttercream will melt during the tranportation. I was glad that it still intact when I reach in Penang.
I have also modified the steps of handling oven temperature, the steps are suit to my oven. I turn on the oven fan after bake for 3mins because i want the macarons to form a thick shell to prevent it cracks later. Then i turn on the oven fan as to let hot air circulate evenly and develop the nice skirt and dry the bottom for easy peeling off from the paper. Every oven is difference, you have to understand your oven and adjust accordingly..Anyway, for sure, you need to have low oven temperature (150C) and baking them at the lower rack of the oven.
Earl Grey Macarons with Cherry Compote Buttercream
(Recipe source: modified from old recipe here , by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover)
*makes about 25 filled macarons
100g almond meal or almond flour
100g icing sugar
38g egg whites
A pinch of salt
1/2 sachet Earl Grey tea leaves, chopped finely
38g aged egg whites
100g caster sugar
Food colouring, I use green
1. To prepare aged egg white-separate egg white and egg yolk (keep egg yolk for other use). Keep egg white in a container and cover with a cling film. Store inside the fridge for 1-2 days.
2. Remove aged white eggs from fridge, let them return to room temperature.
3. Sift almond meal and icing sugar in a mixing bowl, set aside.
3. To prepare syrup, cook sugar and water until it reaches 118C.
4. When the syrup reaches 70C, start beat egg white until medium peaks (work with hand mixer)
5. When syrup reaches 118C, quickly pour it into egg whites on low speed.
6. Turn speed to medium high and beat meringue until stiff and glossy. While beating meringue, mix almond mixture with egg white, salt and earl grey tea, set aside.
7. Fold meringue into almond mixture,add in colouring, mix until it looks shinny and creamy.
8. Place batter into a piping bag with a plain 1cm nozzle. Pipe dollops of batter onto a lined baking tray (line with two sheets of non-stick baking paper) . Rest for 30mins.
9. Bake in a preheated oven at 150C (fan off) for 3mins at the lower rack.
10. Turn on the oven fan, continue to bake at 150C for 11 - 12mins.
11. Remove from tray and let it rest on a rack to cool down before peel them off.
Cherry Compote Italian Buttercream
(to fill about 50 macarons)100g fresh cherries, chopped finely
1 tbsp caster sugar
2tbsp lemon juices
36g egg white
70g caster sugar
pinch of salt
1. To make cherry compote. Place chopped cherries, sugar and lemon juice into a pot. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes or until thick. Set aside to cool.
2. Before you start making buttercream, remove butter from fridge and cut butter into knob sizes and keep aside, then proceed next step. If you are not doing buttercream right away, then keep the butter inside the fridge until you want to make buttercream.
3. In a pot, add in caster sugar and water. Bring to a temperature of 118 C. When the temperature reaches 70 C, whisk the egg whites in a hand mixer. By the time the sugar reaches 118 C, the egg white should be in medium peaks. Gradually stream in the sugar syrup while the mixer is still on medium speed whisk.
4. Whisk till it’s somewhat glossy and that the bowl is not so hot, add in a knob of butter into the mixer (while the whisk is still running) one at a time. If you add the butter when the meringue is still very hot, it turns soupy. If you add in the butter when the meringue is cold, you get a split buttercream. After all the butter has been added, whisk for another further 2-3 minutes.
5. The buttercream should be glossy and buttery. Now, add in the cherry compote and mix well. ( If the buttercream turned runny, take a big bowl fill with ice and water, continue to beat the buttercream, it will turn creamy and glossy again).
6. Pour buttercream into a piping bag and start piping dollops of creamy buttery goodness on the macaron shells.
7. Sandwich with another macaron shell, ligtly press it to secure. Then arrange them on a tray or container and let it rest in the fridge for overnight. This will make them crisp on the outside and tender on the inside, and taste much better.