The Art of Afternoon Tea comes to you from Paris this week, wandering the streets of the Marais, antiquing in village Saint Paul, frocked to the nines in vintage lace whilst taking tea and nibbling on delicious, perfectly formed macarons at Ladurée.
PS quivering with excitement about the rumour that Ladurée will be opening in Sydney this year! C’est magnifique!
Ingredients – macaron – makes 18 complete
1/2 cup pure icing sugar
120g almond meal
2 egg whites, at room temp left out overnight
1/4 cup caster sugar
drops of rose food colouring
Ingredients – ganache
1/4 cup pouring cream
100g white chocolate, broken into cubes
1/2 punnet raspberries, finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 140C. Grease and line three baking trays*. In a food processor blend the icing sugar and almond meal until finely ground. Sift this mixture twice and set aside.
In a large bowl beat the egg whites until soft peaks form then add the caster sugar 1 tsp at a time beating continuously until thick and glossy. Beat in a few drops of food colouring until of desired colour.
Fold in the almond mixture until well combine. Mixture should slowly slide down the sides of the bowl when tilted. Spoon mixture into a piping bag with a plain 1cm nozzle or use a snap lock bag with the corner cut off 1cm. Pipe 36, 3cm rounds onto the prepared trays then set the trays aside to stand until a crust begins to form on top (approx 4-5 hours).
Bake for 10-12min, swapping the placement of the trays in the oven after 6min, until firm but not coloured. Remove from the oven, transfer to a wire rack and set aside to cool.
To make the ganache, place the cream in a small saucepan and bring to just below boiling. Remove from the heat, add the chocolate and stir vigorously until smooth. Refrigerate for 1 hour then remove and stir vigorously again til of a smooth consistency. Add the raspberries and lightly stir through.
Place the ganache into a piping bag and pipe rounds onto half of the macarons. Sandwich with the remaining macarons and refrigerate for 30min to set. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
*The perfect macaron takes time and practise. As you can see from my illustrations above (I do like to draw things lifelike) I still need a bit of practise getting the sizing of each half consistent. A good trick to help out here (and something I will be doing next time) is to draw rows of 3cm circles directly onto your baking paper, spaced 5cm apart, using a template/glass/cookie cutter to get the exact size each time. Grease your trays then stick the prepared baking paper pencil side down onto the trays. You will be able to see exactly the size each macaron needs to be.