These aren’t the prettiest replications of them temperamental confections but still decent, I’d say! I modified Pierre Hermé’s basic macaron recipe slightly to accommodate the cocoa. And I don't have egg white powder but using very aged whites (7 days old) seems to have made up for it.
Ingredients for 20 macarons (40 shells)
100g Almond flour
6. Fold in meringue by sweeping spatula under mixture toward you and bringing it over the top, while turning the bowl to attack it from different angles. Scrape down the sides from time to time. I find the best way to check if you’ve got the batter to the right stage is to do a test pipe with a small portion. If it is still peaky, squeeze it out and mix more.
Test pipe: too peaky. Needs to be folded further
I stopped folding at this stage
7. When you’re happy with the batter, dot some on the perimeter of baking tray to stick the 2 sheets of baking paper down (the one with circles and the blank one). Then pipe! Keep nozzle tip in the piped batter until ready to pull away or it’ll look like one macaron stacked atop another. Don’t pull away too quickly or the tip of the batter will break off, leaving a crater.
8. Let sit till sides and top surface don’t leave a mark on your finger when touched.
9. Turn oven to 160 degrees celcius, to the mode that gives top and bottom heat (no fan). When preheated, stack the tray of macarons onto another empty tray and put these in the oven at the lowest rack and wish them well (I always find myself saying “all the best my babies!”). After 4 min, remove empty bottom tray. At 9 ½ min, insert an empty oven tray into topmost oven shelf to block off some heat so macaron tops don’t burn. At 14 min, remove macarons, let stand for 20 sec and poke gently at the feet. If they hold their shape, it’s done! If not, return to oven for another minute.
I brought Valrhona Jivara and Guanaja chocolate to the counter to pay, but returned them when I realised they were not on offer. I just couldn’t bear to pay $21 for chocolate! Instead, I bought 2 blocks of Lindt for $7.
1. Put chocolates into a medium ovenproof bowl and soften them in the microwave. When done, bowl should be warm to touch, not hot. If too hot, let cool before incorporating the cooking cream.
2. Put cooking cream into a pan on very low heat, swirling around to ensure even heat distribution.
3. When cream is warmish to touch, remove from heat and pour onto chocolate in a thin stream, whisking continuously until smooth and cool.
4. Add thick cream. Whisk till mixture is airy.
Putting it all together
Piping nice rounds of filling ensures that it spreads out evenly when you press the shells together, so they look good from all side angles.