I am captivated by macarons of late. I am no pro, that’s for sure. Sometimes I get the batter as folded as they are supposed to be, sometimes they are still a little too stiff. When they are too stiff, it results in imperfect tops that aren’t smooth. They are incredibly finicky. Just today I made a batch that one out of the three baking sheets, all the shells cracked and feet didn’t form. Yeah, I don’t know what happened there. I am thinking perhaps my baking rack was too low in my oven. Like I said, crazy finicky.
If you can get past how finicky these cuties are, then they are well worth your time. Even if they don’t come out the way you want them to, they are still delicious. These macarons have the same shell as some of the other ones I’ve made lately. I am really loving this method, even if I can’t always get it right. The inside is where it is always at though. I am an eggnog lover, as well as my kids, so I thought it was only appropriate to make an eggnog filling this month. It’s a creamy, cream cheese frosting that is really simple and fast to throw together. Even my husband, who doesn’t love eggnog, thoroughly enjoyed these.
This December I have been baking my heart out. I thought I had all sorts of time, but here we are, 2 days until Christmas. Holy moly that went by REALLY quickly. I swore I had a few weeks left. Whoops! Since I have been baking a ridiculous amount, I am going to try to cram it all in before Christmas day. I have a whole lot of super awesome holiday themed desserts coming your way. So stay tuned for all the greatest sweet treats you need in your life.
Recipe for the shells from Pies & Tacos
Recipe for the macaron shells from Pies & Tacos
For the shells
- 105 grams blanched almond flour
- 105 grams confectioners’ sugar
- 100 grams egg whites
- 100 grams granulated sugar
For the filling
- 2 ounces full fat cream cheese, softened
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3 Tablespoons Eggnog
- Have ready a piping bag fitted with a large round tip, and 2 baking sheets lined with silpat or parchment paper. Set aside. Ready your stand mixer with a clean bowl and the whisk attachment.
- In a medium mixing bowl, measure and sift the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar together. Set aside.
- Create a double boiler by having ready a heatproof bowl that will fit in a small pot of water without touching the water. Bring water to a simmer in pot. In the bowl, combine the egg whites and granulated sugar. Place the bowl over the barely simmering water and whisk constantly. Continue whisking until the sugar has melted and the eggs are frothy white, 4-5 minutes. You can test if this by rubbing a little bit of the mixture between your fingers. If it still feels gritty, then the sugar hasn’t melted yet and needs to cook a little more.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared stand mixer bowl. Turn the mixer on to the lowest speed and mix for 30 seconds. Gradually increase the speed and mix the egg whites until they are glossy white and form stiff peaks, 5-10 minutes
- Pour the sifted dry ingredients into the meringue. Gently fold the dry ingredients into the meringue with a rubber spatula until no dry streaks remain, and the mixture runs smoothly off of your spatula.
- Scoop the mixture into the prepared piping bag. Pipe the mixture on the prepared baking sheets by holding the bag at a 90º angle, and apply pressure on the bag for about 3 seconds, until a small circle has formed. Twist the bag and pull the bag up quickly. Repeat until all the batter is gone.
- Gently bang the baking sheets on the counter to release any air bubbles. Use a toothpick to pop any pesky air bubbles. Let the shells sit at room temperature for 20-40 minutes, to allow the shells to dry and slightly harden.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 325ºF.
- Place one baking sheet in the preheated oven, in the center and bake for 18-20 minutes, rotating half way through. Remove from the oven and bake the other tray. Let the shells cool completely before removing from the pan.
- While the shells cool, make the filling. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, on medium-high speed, beat the cream cheese and butter together until creamy, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the confectioners’ sugar, then mix in the vanilla extract, nutmeg and eggnog. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until combined and creamy, about 2-3 minutes.
- To assemble, match the shells by size. Pipe a boarder a round of frosting on each half of the sandwiches. Gently sandwich the macarons together, pressing gently to hold. Serve!
The assembled macarons will last for about 24 hours in the refrigerator. Otherwise, store in the fridge, unassembled, assembling before serving.