Nic and Rocco: Macarons
- Preparation time: 2 hours
- Cooking time: 1 hour
- Serves: 24
200g caster sugar
4 egg whites
200g almond meal, sifted
200g (1 1/4 cups) icing sugar, sifted
Gel food colouring in orange, blue, purple, red, yellow and brown
180g caster sugar
125ml (1/2 cup) water
3 egg yolks
300g unsalted butter, diced, softened
1 small mango, flesh puréed
2 tsp blueberry jam
Fresh blueberries, to serve
Drop of almond essence
1/4 cup pistachios, finely chopped, to serve
100g frozen raspberries
50g caster sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
Fresh raspberries, to serve
75g (1/2 cup) cornflour
220g (1 cup) caster sugar
125ml (1/2 cup) lemon juice
310ml (1¼ cups) water
2 tsp grated lemon zest
3 egg yolks
60g unsalted butter, chopped
200g dark chocolate, chopped
100ml thickened cream
1 tbs rum (optional)
1. To make macaroons, preheat oven to 200C. Combine caster sugar and water in a small saucepan and simmer over low heat, stirring, for 8-10 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Heat sugar syrup until it reaches 118C (test using a sugar thermometer), brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush to avoid crystallisation.
2. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer on medium speed, whisk 2 egg whites in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Increase speed to high, then slowly add sugar syrup in a constant stream until combined. Set aside.3. Combine almond meal and icing sugar in a medium stainless-steel bowl, then gradually add remaining unbeaten egg whites, mixing with a wooden spoon until the mixture is firm and paste-like.
4. Separate mixture into smaller bowls, depending on how many colours you want. Add desired food colouring to each bowl and combine well, then divide beaten egg whites evenly between each bowl and thoroughly combine. The mixtures should have a velvety texture.
5. Spoon coloured mixtures into piping bags fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Pipe mixture to make 3cm rounds on silicon-mat lined baking trays. Tap trays to flatten peaks and rest for 30 minutes or until mixture feels dry to touch and forms a skin.
6. Reduce oven temperature to 150C and place trays in oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until bases are firm and a macaroon can be lifted from the tray. Remove trays from oven and cool macaroons on tray.
7. To make buttercream, place sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat and stir for 8-10 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Brush sides of saucepan with a wet pastry brush to avoid crystallisation. Boil to 121C (test using a sugar thermometer).
8. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer on high speed, whisk egg yolks in a medium bowl until thick and pale. Reduce speed to medium and gradually pour in sugar syrup in a thin, steady stream. Whisk for 5 minutes, then add butter 1 piece at a time and whisking after each addition, until combined. Divide mixture between 6 bowls to make the different flavoured fillings and leave for 15-20 minutes to cool completely.
9. For mango, add mango purée to buttercream to taste and mix thoroughly. For blueberry, add jam to buttercream and mix thoroughly. For pistachio, add a drop of essence to buttercream to taste.
10. To make raspberry coulis, place raspberries, sugar and lemon juice in a medium saucepan over low heat for 8-10 minutes or until sugar dissolves and mixture is smooth, then strain through a fine sieve into a small bowl and set aside to cool. When ready, add to buttercream, 1 tsp at a time, to taste.
11. To make lemon curd, combine cornflour and sugar in a medium saucepan over low heat, then gradually stir in lemon juice and water and stir until smooth. Cook for 3-5 minutes or until mixture boils and thickens. Remove from heat and stir in lemon zest, egg yolks and butter. Stir until melted. Cover with plastic wrap and cool to room temperature. When ready, add to buttercream, 1 tsp at a time, to taste.
12. To make ganache, melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until smooth. Add cream and rum, if using, and stir until thickened, then cool to set. When ready, add to buttercream, 1 tsp at a time, to taste.13. To assemble, pipe mango filling between orange macaroons and blueberry filling between blue macaroons. For pistachio filling, pipe between purple macaroons, then roll sides in pistachios. Pipe raspberry filling between red macaroons, lemon curd between yellow macaroons and ganache between brown macaroons. Sandwich together and top blue macaroons with a blueberry, and red macaroons with a raspberry, using a little extra filling to secure.