Malt Chocolate Macarons
A Love Letter to Mr Macaron:
Hello Mr Macaron, it was really good seeing you today. I love the way our relationship has matured over the past few weeks. Feels like we’ve reached a new depth, a new chapter, a symbiotic relationship.
Your elusiveness and temperamental nature is intruiging, your beauty is beguiling. I am so happy about having persevered in the pursuit of your love and affection. Attaining the perfect chocolate macaron shell was by no means straight-forward. No matter what recipe advice from whoever, I just had to make it my own. Having tried, tried and tried again and again, today I finally found my perfect chocolate shell.
Mr Macaron, please forgive my impatience at times of despair, when I feel like all my efforts go against me and no matter how hard I try I just can’t seem to get through to you. You must know that no matter what, I will never give up on you. You and I, we’re both in together for the long haul. I look forward to a promising future together, full of mutual appreciation and fulfillment.
Lots of love,
Malt Chocolate Macarons
For the shells
3 egg whites, room temperature
110g almond meal
200g caster sugar
4 tbsp cocoa powder (love love love Green & Black’s Organic Cocoa)
30g granulated sugar
1. Preheat oven to 165C. Using a stand mixer or a hand-held electric mixer whisk the egg whites to a foam, gradually adding the granulated sugar until you obtain a glossy meringue. Do not overbeat. If you have to, keep stopping at intervals to check the consistency – it should have stiff peaks.
2. Combine the ground almonds, powdered sugar and cocoa in a food processor or blender and give them a good pulse and stir to mix. Sift them and add it gradually to the meringue with the colouring. Fold it quickly to break some of the air and then fold the mass carefully until you obtain a mixture that flows like smooth cake batter (or magma…if you know what magma flows like). Do 15 long folds and test a small amount on a plate: if the tops sinks in on its own you’re done with folding. If it has a stiff peak, do another 15 long folds or so and test again. You may have to do this thrice till you reach the ideal batter consistency.
3. Fill the batter into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip and pipe small rounds (10p coin size – you can even trace around the outline with a pen and flip the parchment over to the non-pen-marked side, just make sure the traced circles are spaced with 1-1.5 inch gaps) onto the parchment paper lined baking sheets. Let the macarons sit out for 45 minutes grow skins and bake for 8-10 minutes with the door closed.
4. Let cool for 20 seconds. You may have trouble removing them from the parchment so remove the parchment from baking tray, moisten the tray and place the parchment back onto it. Let rest for another 20 seconds and them peel off the macarons. This will be easy peasy now. Don’t let them rest on the wet tray for too long otherwise they’ll start getting soggy.
Malt Chocolate Filling
120g butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
450g icing sugar
100g unsweetened cocoa
100g malt powder, like Horlicks or something similar
6 tbsp whole milk
1. Beat butter, vanilla and salt together at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy.
2. In a mixing bowl, mix together icing sugar, cocoa, and malt powder. Gradually add icing sugar mixture with 3 tbsp milk, a tbsp at a time, beating at low speed until blended and smooth after each addition. Add in a few more tbsp of milk till desired consistency is reached. Pipe or spoon the filling onto macaron shells and sandwich.