Italian Meringue Macarons

Italian Meringue Macarons



(adapted from Not So Humble Pie)

Ingredients:

Mass:


  • 150g almond meal (It is much cheaper and efficient to buy Trader Joe's Blanched Slivered Almonds and grind them up in your food processor. I used to actually blanch almonds myself and grind and dry them, but that was WAY too much work.)
  • 150g powdered sugar
  • 50g egg whites (do not have to be aged, approximately 2 eggs)
  • Gel food coloring (optional)
  • 2 tsp cornstarch (if weather is humid)
  • pinch of salt



Meringue:


  • 55g egg whites (do not have to be aged, approximately 2 eggs)
  • 35g granulated sugar (to stabilize half egg whites)
  • 120g granulated sugar
  • 40g water


Materials:

Candy thermometer
Kitchen/postal scale
Piping bags/tips (These give the most perfect results if that's what you're going for)
Good insulated baking sheets (I use Airbake)
Parchment paper or silpats (I prefer silpats but parchment is nice too)
Stand mixer (recommended, but it is possible with a hand mixer, just takes longer)

Sift almond meal and powdered sugar together into a large bowl. Add the 50g egg whites and mix until it becomes a dough-like consistency. (This is the time to add food coloring, remember the meringue will lighten the color of the mass)

Set aside and cover with plastic wrap so it doesn't harden.

For the meringue, beat the 55g egg whites in the bowl of your stand mixer until soft peaks form. When egg whites become bubbly, add the extra 35g sugar to stabilize it. DO NOT overbeat egg whites at this stage. After they have formed, turn down your mixer to "stir" or very low to keep them moving so they don't deflate.

At the same time, put the water and sugar on the stove over medium-high heat and attach your candy thermometer. When the mixture gets bubbly all around with no spots of unboiled water (or 240 degrees F) pour the sugar syrup into the egg whites and turn up the speed of your mixer to high. Let it beat until the bowl of the mixer is warm to the touch (body temperature). It should look like this:

Shiny, stiff, and smooth.

Then, add 1/3 of the meringue to the mass and fold until you cannot see any more white streaks of meringue. After you have lightened the mass, add the rest of the egg whites and fold.

Now you are ready to pipe them with your piping bag into 1-1.5 inch diameter circles, however big you like. I pipe them onto a parchment paper-lined or silpat-lined aluminum baking sheet. I usually fit about 20-24 circles on each pan.

Then drop your baking sheets about 2-3 times until they flatten out and the air bubbles pop. If you still see any, pop them with a toothpick. Now let them dry about 20-30 minutes or until they are dry to the touch (depends on humidity). While you're waiting, preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit  Check your oven to make sure it's the correct temperature! Sometimes the oven lies. lol

Dull and dry, ready for the oven.

Now bake them for 10-13 minutes, or even longer if they are still too moist inside. Bake only one tray at a time if your oven has inconsistent heat. Let them cool completely before you take them off the parchment/silpat.

Sandwich together with a filling (my favorite is Swiss Meringue Buttercream) and you're done! Store filled shells in an airtight container in the fridge for at least 24 hours. This helps the shell meld together with the filling, making it a bit crisp on the outside but melt-in-your-mouth on the inside. :)

This is my favorite recipe. I have not had a single macaron crack or turn out feetless after using this recipe. I will NEVER go back to French meringue method. These macarons turn out more cakelike and have better structure on the inside. Look at the nice inside on these ones!

Do you see hollows?!?! Nope. Unlike this ugly one here from this patisserie in SF. How sad.

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