But I must confess, I do tend to avoid these little treats for several reasons.
1) I am a perfectionist, and the few times I have tried to make them, they haven't turned out exactly how I wished they would.
2) They take a lot of time and precision.
3) Up until now, I hadn't found a decent recipe which worked for me!
However, after buying the lovely alice in bakingland book, I was inspired to try them out once more!
Initially, I planned to make a basic rose water shell. Rose water is such a pretty scent and flavour, and I don't get to use it often enough. So when I saw a recipe which suggested using it, I jumped at the chance! However, my normal filling for macarons is generally a white chocolate ganache. But after looking in the cupboard, and realising that we didn't have any white chocolate, I had to change my plans. It's so important to get the filling right, as it is this which binds the two flavours together. Rose water doesn't go with a lot of flavours, making this task a bit harder than usual. However, I soon realised that Turkish Delight is made up of rose water and milk chocolate, hence my Turkish Delight Macarons!
Rose water shell
© 60 g almond meal
© 100g icing sugar
© 50g egg whites
© 17g granulated sugar
© 1-2 drops of pink food colouring (depending how dark you want your macarons to be)
© 1 teaspoon of rose water
1) Put the almond meal and icing sugar in a food processor and grind until a powder forms (This is to ensure that your macarons aren't lumpy...a technique I am yet to perfect).
2) Using a stand mixer, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Slowly add in the granulated sugar until stiff peaks form. During this time, also add in food colouring and rose water.
3) Divide almond mixture into 3 portions. Add in one portion at a time to your egg mixture, folding in slowly and in a gentle manner. It is important that you do not over mix, as this will cause your macaron mixture to become too runny. The consistency of your mixture should be smooth and ribbon like, breaking off when lifted by a spatula.
4) Place mixture into a piping bag.
5) On a tray lined with baking paper, pipe on mixture. The macarons should be about the size of a 20c piece. They will spread marginally after piping.
6) Tap your tray onto the bench, as this removes any air bubbles from your macarons.
7) Leave your macarons sitting on the bench top for at least 20 minutes. A skin should form on the top of your shell. This helps with the development of the 'feet' on your macarons. During this time, preheat your oven to 140 degrees Celsius (I use a fan-forced oven).
8) Place macarons in the oven and allow to cook for around 12 minutes.
9) Take out of the oven and allow to cool completely. Don't rush this process, as your macarons will stick to your baking paper if they are not completely cold.
TPB TIP: When piping your macarons, if you get a little peak on top of each shell, wet your finger slightly and gently rub the peak till it is flat.
Milk Chocolate Ganache
© 125 g milk chocolate
© 1/3 cup cream
1) Melt the chocolate in the microwave (I am so slack and refuse to stand by my stove just to melt chocolate. But this way works perfectly, and I am yet to fail at ganache!)
2) Quickly whisk in the cream and set aside until the mixture begins to firm.
3) Pipe filling onto macaron shell and sandwich with another.
4) Drizzle any additional chocolate on top of your macarons to make them look extra pretty!
There you go! A delicious recipe for a favourite sweet treat of mine. I dare you to have a go!
Until next time, happy baking.