Valentine’s Day Macarons

Sydney and I wanted to create a macaron flavor that screams Valentine’s Day. In the past we generally have a small amount of champagne left over, not enough for a glass, but I detest wasting. I thought champagne raspberry macarons would be a perfect marriage. Valentine’s day is still a couple weeks away so we needed to purchase a bottle of champagne, no need to worry about waste we created a few more recipes with champagne and each of us had a glass ( it would be a disservice if we didn’t verify the quality of the champagne). Choose your favorite rose champagne; you are most likely going to want to have a glass  or two.

Raspberry-Champagne Macarons:

Prepare your mise en places.

Almond flour mise en place

Mise en place for the meringue.

The bowl and whisk should be very clean; to insure the egg whites metamorphose into fluffy shiny meringue

In a food processor add the almond flour and icing sugar, pulse until combined, add and pulse the raspberry powder until fine and combined.

You might need to stop the processor and fold the ingredients; proceed to pulse again

 Divide the egg whites between two measuring jugs. Pour 1 jug of egg whites into the bowl of your mixer.

 In a small pot over low heat, combine sugar, vanilla skin, and water. Swirl the pot over the burner to dissolve the sugar completely. Do not stir. Increase the heat  boil to softball stage ( 113 to 116 degrees C/235 to 240 degrees F). Use a candy thermometer for accuracy. Wash down the inside wall of the pot with a wet pastry brush, if needed.

Swirl only until the sugar has mixed into the water

In the bowl of an electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, place the eggs whites and egg white powder on medium low speed until foamy. Add the cream of tartar (if not using a copper bowl), increase the speed to medium, and beat until soft peaks, add vanilla seeds, raspberry essence, sugar and begin to slowly add super fine sugar to the egg whites. Whisk egg whites to medium firm peaks.

I prefer a copper bowl, but the stainless steel bowl is fine if you add 1/4-teaspoon cream of tartar

 With the mixer running, pour the hot sugar syrup in a thin stream over the fluffed egg whites. Beat until the egg whites are stiff and glossy. Do not overbeat your meringue or it will be too dry. The meringue should resizable VERY shiny whipped cream texture, as my daughter says.

Keep the meringue slightly warm about 31 degrees C/ 89 degrees F

Add a third of the meringue to the almond mixture, give it a quick fold to break some of the air, keep folding till the meringue mixture is mixed into the almond and then fold another third of the meringue into the batter, continue to fold till there are no white streaks. Now add the last third of meringue to the batter fold till thick, shiny and ribbons fall from the spatula. Continue to fold fully until you obtain a batter that falls back on itself after counting to 10. There is no magic. Test a small amount on a the counter: if the tops flatten on its own you are good to go. If there is a small beak, give the batter a couple more folds

Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip  with the batter and pipe small rounds (1.5 inches in diameter) onto silpats or parchment paper lined baking sheets.

 Let the macarons sit out for about 1 hour to make sure the shells develop a skin and are slightly dull in color. A well-made macaron features a crinkly “foot” on the bottom of each shell. Let the piped batter rest for 30 to 60 minutes, and then rap the sheets on a tabletop to help them set properly. And stack two baking sheets together, so the delicate cookies are sitting atop a double-or even triple-thick baking pan.

Champagne-Raspberrycrème fraiche cream:

  • 170 grams/ 3/4  cup Crème fraiche, very cold
  • 170 grams/ heavy cream, very cold
  • 23 grams powder sugar
  • 15 grams/1- Tablespoon Champagne
  • 3 to 4 drops raspberry essence
  • 2/ 56 grams egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 10 grams/34-Tablespoon  of super fine sugar

 Prepare your mise en place.

You can substitute mascarpone cheese for the crème frîache

Prepare a piping bag with tip of choice and pipe filling onto 1 macaron and than sandwich with another macaron.

A star piping tube works great for this filling

 Sydney and I could not believe the taste of these Valentine Macarons; the raspberries with champagne filling is pure palate magic!




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