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125g almond meal
125g unsalted butter
Prep 11/2hr (+ standing time) Bake 15min (per batch) Makes about 28
Pretty to look at, divine to eat, these macarons were created by Allen Au, one of our Make Me a Baker graduates, to use as part of his Graduation cake recipe.
125g almond meal
125g pure icing sugar
96g egg whites
125g caster sugar
Gel colouring (see Baker's tip)
125g unsalted butter
125g pure icing sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon sieved cherry jam
- Preheat oven to 165°C (145°C fan-forced). Line two large oven trays with non-stick baking paper or silicone baking mats.
- Sift together the almond meal and icing sugar into a large bowl. Add half the egg white and mix until a thick paste forms.
- Combine the caster sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and simmer over medium heat, brushing down the sides of the saucepan with a wet pastry brush occasionally to prevent any sugar crystals forming. Do not stir. Once the sugar mixture has reached 115°C on a sugar thermometer, use an electric mixer with a whisk attachment to whisk the remaining egg white on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Once the sugar mixture has reached 118°C, remove the saucepan from the heat and slowly whisk the hot sugar mixture into the egg whites. Continue to whisk on medium-high speed until the temperature cools to 30°C. The meringue should be thick and glossy. Add enough gel colour to the meringue to tint to the desired colour, whisking until evenly combined.
- Fold 2 large tablespoons of the meringue into the almond paste mixture until well incorporated. Fold in the remaining meringue until evenly combined. The consistency of the batter should look like molten lava. If you can draw a figure eight and the trail stays on the surface, then the mixture is ready to be piped.
- Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 10mm round nozzle. Pipe the macarons onto the lined trays into 3.5cm rounds. Tap the tray to remove any air bubbles from the macarons. Leave the macarons out in the open until a skin forms on the surface of the macaron. (This can take from 20 minutes to an hour depending on the humidity). The skin should be dry enough that it does not stick to your finger when touched lightly.
- Bake one tray of macarons in the centre of the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until shells don't feel soft at the 'feet' when touched. Set aside to cool on the tray and repeat with the remaining tray of macarons.
- To make the Filling, use an electric mixer to beat the butter until it is pale and creamy. Beat in the icing sugar until well combined. Add the cherry jam and beat until well combined. Spoon the filling into a piping bag fitted with a 7mm star nozzle and pipe a small rosette onto the base of half the macarons. Sandwich with the remaining macarons.
- Store the macarons in the fridge overnight so the flavours from the filling are absorbed by the shells. Bring the macarons to room temperature before serving.
- Allen used Chefmaster Liqua-Gel colours to colour his macarons – he used 8 drops of Super Red with 0.5 drop of Black Diamond
- This recipe is based on a recipe from a course Allen did with Australian Patisserie Academy
Romeo & Juliet Macarons
Prep 40minBake 8-10min (per batch)Makes 40
This recipe was created by Débora Bueno Leite, one of our Make Me a Baker students, as part of her graduation recipe – an impressive Romeo & Juliet Cake. The Macaron base is based on a recipe from a class she attended with MakMak Macarons, with the guava and cream cheese fillings her own creation to match the flavours of her cake which was inspired by a traditional pairing of guava and cheese known as ‘Romeo and Juliet’ in her native Brazil.
- 135g almond meal
- 135g pure icing sugar
- 2g red food colouring (water-based such as Queen Pillar Box Red)
- 145g egg whites (divided into 2 parts of 50g and 95g)
- 250g white sugar 60g water
- 200g good-quality guava paste (available from good delicatessens and specialty food stores)
- 125ml (½ cup) water
Cream Cheese Filling
- 300g cream cheese, at room temperature
- 200ml cold thickened cream
- 160ml (2/3 cup) sweetened condensed milk
- Preheat oven to 170°C (150°C fan-forced). Line 2-3 large baking trays with non-stick baking paper.
- Combine almond meal and pure icing sugar in a bowl and mix well. Pass this mix through a fine sieve.
- In a separate bowl, combine the red food colouring with 50g portion of egg whites. Add to the sifted almond meal and icing sugar and mix well until it becomes a homogenous paste (macaronage). Place the remaining 95g egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer.
- In a small saucepan combine the white sugar and water. Stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves completely and then bring to the boil. As soon as the mixture reaches 114°C on a sugar thermometer, start whisking the 95g portion of egg whites with a whisk attachment until soft peaks form.
- As soon as the sugar syrup reaches 118°C (soft ball stage), add to the egg whites in a steady steam, whisking constantly. Continue to whisk until the meringue cools so that the bowl is just warm to the touch.
- Weigh 190g of the finished meringue (use the remaining meringue can be used for another purpose). Add one-third of the 190g meringue portion into the red paste and mix well until it is evenly combined. Add the remaining two-thirds of the meringue to the coloured meringue mixture and fold gently together, making sure you scrape the bottom of the bowl, until just evenly combined (see Baker’s Tips).
- Transfer the batter into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Pipe rounds of batter ( about 4cm in diameter) onto the trays, leaving 2cm between each round. Tap the tray quite firmly on the bench to remove the air bubbles and settle the batter.
- Bake one tray of macarons at a time in the centre of the oven for 8-10 minutes. The macarons are ready when they no longer wobble when gently touched. Bake for another 1-2 minutes before testing again if necessary.
- Remove from oven and allow the macaron shells to cool completely on the trays.
- To make the Guava Filling, combine with guava paste and water in a small saucepan and stir over medium heat until the paste is creamy. Set aside to cool completely. Transfer the Guava Filling to a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Set aside.
- To make the Cream Cheese Filling, use an electric mixer with a paddle attachment to beat the cream cheese for about 3 minutes or until soft and creamy; set aside. Whisk the cream with a balloon whisk or electric mixer with a whisk attachment in a clean bowl until soft peaks form. Add the cream cheese with the condensed milk and whisk until just combined and smooth. Transfer the Guava Filling to a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Set aside.
- Carefully remove the shells from the trays and pair each with a like-sized shell. Pipe the guava paste onto the centre of a macaron shell and then pip the Cream Cheese Frosting around it. Sandwich with the paired macaron. Repeat with the remaining macarons and fillings.
- Place in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight before serving.
- When combining the meringue mixture with macaronage be careful not to over mix as it will ruin the rise of the shells. Once the batter looks evenly streaked by meringue and macaronage you will be about two-thirds of the way to competing the mixing and it is a good idea to slow down at this stage so you don’t overmix. Once evenly combined, the batter should not be shiny – if it is shiny, you have overmixed it.
Photography by Amy Piddington.