[Last week, right after my 20th birthday, I made a list of 21 things that I want to accomplish before I turn 21. Number 2 on that list was to learn to make macarons. My adventures in baking have always been pretty simple and straight forward. I never really messed with anything difficult or French. I decided it was time to change that. Yesterday, I set out to do so. Let me tell you, these things are incredibly delicate to make. But, it was well worth the trouble!]
Green Tea French Macarons with Honey Cream Filling
- 1 1/4 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 cup of almond meal (or almond flour, same thing)
- 1 green tea bag
- 3/4 tablespoon of hot water
- 3 egg whites, at room temperature (this is important!)
- 1 tablespoon + 1/2 cup of brown sugar, separated
- Green food coloring
- 10 tablespoons (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons) of butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- Pinch of salt
[Before I give you the directions, let me give you some tips. Since this recipe’s main component is egg whites, the little thing are important. Make sure the room you’re working in isn’t too hot, so that the egg whites don’t melt. Choose a day that isn’t too humid. If you want step-by-step picture instructions, click here.)
- Take three completely flat baking sheets. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit each one. Draw 1inch circles on each with a pencil, at least 1 inch apart from each other. Flip the parchment paper over so that the side when the circles drawn is facing down.
- Sift the powdered sugar and the almond meal together into a large bowl.
- Cut open the green tea bag and place the contents in a small bowl. Add the water, stir, and set aside.
- Put the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on high for 30 seconds. Add 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and beat on high for another 5 minutes.
- Add the green tea mixture and a few drops of green food coloring. Beat on high for another 2-3 minutes, until soft peaks form (When you lift the beater from the bowl, the egg whites should hold a straight peak that doesn’t curl at the tip.)
- Fold the egg white mixture (GENTLY!) into the almond meal and sugar mixture, in 2 batches. Stir until smooth.
- Put the batter in a pastry bag fitted with a .04-inch tip. If you don’t have a pastry bag, use a Zip-Loc bag with a TINY bit of the corner snipped off. Twist and clip the top of the bag to avoid overflow.
- Pipe the batter onto the parchment paper, using the drawn circles as a guide. Each macaron should be 1 inch in diameter and about 1/4-1/2 inch thick.
- Hold one of the baking sheets firmly in both hands, and rap it a few times on the counter, to get rid of as much of the peaks as possible. Repeat this with the other two sheets.
- Let the macarons rest on the counter for 20-30 minutes, until they no longer feel sticky when you touch them.
- Heat the oven to 325 degrees, with one rack in the top 1/3 of the oven and the other in the bottom 1/3.
- Put 2 of the cookie sheets in the oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 300 degrees. Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the sheets and swap their positions. Bake for another 3-5 minutes, until the cookies are very pale golden on the bottom.
- Remove the sheets from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool. Cook the other sheet the same way.
- While the cookies are cooling, beat the butter in a stand mixer until it is pale and creamy. Add 1/2 cup brown sugar and beat until it’s light and fluffy. Add the almond meal, honey, and salt. Beat until just combined.
- When all the cookies have cooled completely, remove them from the parchment paper. Pair them by size. Using the same tip that you used to pipe the cookies and pipe the filling onto 1/2 of each pair. Leave a small border around the cookie. Put each pair together.
- Serve and enjoy!