We all know I love a good fusion and love coming up with ways to help keep my South Asian roots to a dish. The flavors of rose, cardamom and cream are ingrained in South Asian desserts and I just had to get Ras Malai flavors into a decadent macaron.
Macarons are a sweet meringue like cookie made using egg whites, sugar and a nut flour. A very popular French dessert that is gluten free and one many enjoy. There is also a coconut version called macaroon which is often confused with the French version I will be showing you today.
So let's get started! For these macarons a food scale is key in getting the right ratio and measurements. It is one recipe that will have to be in grams over estimating by quantity of items to ensure you get the right texture and ratio for the cookie. I will still share a round number in cups or quantity to give you an idea but please use a food scale if you have one to get the right measurements and have a successful recipe turnout.
Separate your egg yolks from your egg whites.
Make sure to weigh the egg whites and discard the yolks or save them to add to a custard.
Leave your egg whites to come to room temperature.
You can also measure out your egg whites the day before you plan to make the macarons by weighing them, then covering them with plastic wrap and poking a few holes for air to circulate and refrigerate. (I prefer this method and found it really makes a difference to let your separated egg whites sit for a day.)
Pull out the egg whites the next morning a few hours before you begin to make the cookies, so they come to room temp.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
You may make markings on your paper to guide you when piping the macarons, if desired.
I printed a 1.5" macaron piping template off google. Just type "1.5 inch Macaron Piping Template" into google and there will be tons.
Just print 2 copies to fit on a large sheet pan then you can trace these on the 2 parchment papers for 2 sheet pans. (there should be 24 to 36 circles on each pan. Once you are done tracing the circles for each sheet pan just flip it so the ink doesn’t get on the edible side.
Set these parchment lined and traced guided template trays aside.
Now weigh and sift together your almond flour and powdered sugar by tapping the side of your sifter or a steel mesh colander with your hand over a bowl.
You don't want to press the ingredients through or tap against the bowl or counter, gently use your hand to help sift the ingredients through the fine mesh.
This is a crucial step in ensuring smooth macarons.
Discard any remaining bits.
Now run the sifted almond flour and powdered sugar through a food processor for a minute or two.
Now pour the almond flour and powdered sugar mixture in your sifter again and sift the mixture again.
Discard any remaining bits again.
Food processor the mixture one last time for a minute or two.
Now sift it one last time.
Now discard any remaining bits one last time.
Set aside this mixture for later.
Now get your stand mixer ready by adding a 1/2 tsp of vinegar to the bowl and use a paper towel to wipe it clean.
This helps to ensure a clean, odor free, oil free bowl.
At this point you want to measure out the rest of the ingredients needed for the cookie portion of the recipe, this allows you to have all ingredients ready to add without over mixing or undermixing the mixture, as it is delicate.
Take your egg whites at room temp, add them to the stand mixing bowl, and whisk them in a stand mixture until frothy.
Now add your cream of tartar and let it mix in (this helps stabalize the egg whites).
Whisk on high speed while slowly and gradually adding in your weighed out granulated sugar.
Once your egg whites are glossy and start to fluff up add your food coloring if desired.
Now add your flavorings of vanilla and rose water and allow them to mix into the egg mixture.
Turn the stand mixer off and whisk by hand for an additional minute or two just to get firm stiff peaks.
You will know your mixture is ready if you turn your bowl upside down and the egg whites stay in and hold their shape.
Don’t over mix!
Now fold in your almond flour and powdered sugar mixture gently, 1/3 at a time.
Be sure NOT to whisk it, you need to fold it to keep the air from deflating.
Use a spatula to grab the edges and fold to the middle until the almond flour mixture completely mixes into the egg whites. Then repeat by adding 1/3 of the almond flour mixture at a time until all of it is used.
You will know your mixture is ready when you can make ribbons or the figure 8 at the top of your batter when you pick up your spatula.
Now add your mixture to a piping bag and pipe rounds to make the macaron cookie shape on the parchment lined baking sheet with markings you had set aside.
To pipe, start at the center and push enough of the batter out that it covers your traced template circles then pull up in a circular motion to stop the filling. It helps to hold the piping bag straight vertical and allow the batter to spread on its own from the middle.
If you have little tips on your piped cookie rounds, dip your finger in water and pat them down gently to smoothen the tops.
Now pick up your trays and smack them down a few times to let out any air bubbles.
Now let them rest on the counter for 40 mins.
This is crucial to help form a skin on top of the cookies so they don't crack while baking.
Preheat your oven at 300’F and clean up while you wait.
You will notice after 40 mins they have developed a skin at the surface.
That is exactly what you want.
Bake the macarons for 7 mins.
Then flip the trays around and bake for another 8 mins.
Remove from oven and allow them to completely cool.
If you mixed your batter correctly making sure it wasn't too wet you should be left with feet (ruffles around the edges of the shell/cookie).
See above picture for reference.
You must let them completely cool and come to room temp before removing them from the parchment paper.
Gently with a help of a flat spatula, pull the completely cooled macarons from the parchment paper.
Leave them on the trays they were baked in.
Take one tray and set those macarons aside, these will be the bottoms.
Grab the other tray, these will be the tops.
Melt white chocolate chips in 10 second increments until chocolate is melted.
Drizzle the melted white chocolate using a fork over the top halves of the macarons then sprinkle with pistachios, rose petals and cardamom powder.
I like drizzling over only half of the cookie and adding all the garnishes to one before moving onto the next lid because white chocolate melts fast.
Let the tops hardened.
Meanwhile grab the bottom macarons tray that you set aside.
Flip them over.
Add your frosting to a piping bag.
Now pipe your frosting (using a star tip if prefered) onto the insides of the bottom half of the cookies.
Grab the hardened garnish tops and place them over the bottom filled cookie to make a sandwiched macaron cookie.
Refrigerate for at least 4 hours then serve.
It is prefered to make these 2 to 3 days before you serve them because the longer they sit the better they get in texture.
I hope you enjoy this recipe. I know its a little lengthy but I wanted to be thorough and really detailed in helping you achieve these cookies. I went through many test runs before getting cohesive macarons. So don't be disheartened if it takes you a few tries.