Friday, June 24, 2011

Espresso Macarons with Mocha Filling

So I have some exciting news to share with all of you...I am moving!

My husband and I are relocating to Denver, Colorado and we couldn't be more excited! We have lived in Houston for almost exactly 5 years and next week we will be packing a truck and driving the 18 hours to our new home in Denver!!

I know you all understand how busy moving can be and I haven't gotten much baking in lately, but the last thing we decided to pack up was the kitchen. How could I go without baking for that long!? Also, Wednesday was my birthday and for the first time (after many years of protest) I got to make my own cake! I will share this divine chocolate cake with you later, but today I will share the other item I had been itching to try again. Espresso Macarons!

My lovely sister-in-law bought me a huge bag of almond flour to make more macarons with so I aim to please :-) Before you begin please go read my tips from my first macaron post will help, I promise!

Espresso Macaroons with Mocha Filling

300 grams ground almonds or almond flour
300 grams confectioners' sugar, sifted
110 grams egg whites, room temperature
2 tablespoons instant espresso
15 grams water
300 grams granulated sugar
75 grams water
110 grams egg whites, room temperature

1 cup butter, softened
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted
1 tablespoon instant coffee
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons of milk 

To prepare cookies, preheat oven to 330 degrees F and line baking sheets with silicone baking mats, set aside. In a small dish combine 2 tablespoons instant espresso with 15 grams of water, set aside. In a large bowl, combine almond flour, confectioners sugar, first set of egg whites, and prepared instant espresso, set aside. In a separate mixing bowl fitted with a whisk attachment pour remaining egg whites, do not starting mixing yet. In a medium saucepan combine water and sugar over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Using a candy thermometer, once the sugar-water mixture reaches 110 degrees C, begin whisking the egg whites at a high speed. Once the sugar-water mixture reaches 118 degrees C remove from heat and slowly pour into beating egg whites, do not stop the mixer to do this. Continue whisking till the volume has almost tripled in size and you have a shiny, smooth, white meringue. If you remove the whisk from the bowl you should have stiff peaks.

In small amounts fold the meringue into the almond flour mixture, blend only till all white streaks have disappeared. Be sure to scrape sides and bottom of bowl to incorporate all of the mixture, anything not incorporated may cause cracking. Fit a pastry bag with a 10mm tip and fill with macaron batter. Pour small (about 1-inch diameter), even circles of batter on prepared pans, make sure to leave room for spreading. Once each pan is filled with circles, give it a few taps on the counter and let rest for 15-30 minutes. Bake each pan for 13-17 minutes. Cookies will be done when you touch the top and it wiggles, if top breaks off it is not done and if bottom comes off the silicone sheet, it is overdone. Let cookies cool on sheet completely, then remove gently.

To prepare the filling, melt the unsweetened chocolate in a bowl over simmering water or the quick and easy way, microwave it, let cool slightly to room temperature. In a large bowl beat butter on high till light and fluffy, scraping sides as needed. Add in melted chocolate, coffee, and vanilla and mix till incorporated. Sift in confectioners' sugar one cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping sides and bottom of bowl. Once all the sugar has been incorporated add in milk and beat till light and fluffy.

Pair up your macaron cookies with a dollop of filling in the middle. Taste will appreciate after a few days.

If you hadn't noticed, I did not use any coloring in the cookie this time, I wanted to see the macaron au naturel!

Hope you enjoy, I am off to pack away my kitchen!

Happy Baking y'all!
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