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.