Valentines Day is an opportunity to express your love to loved ones. What better way to show you care than to spend time baking a beautiful and delicious treat? Homemade trumps store bought, always. These stunning strawberry macaroons with gold kisses from @NutmegandHoneybee are sure to be a hit!
Ingredients for the Macaron Shells:
• 3/4 cup almond flour
• 1 cup confectioners sugar
• 1/4 cup superfine sugar
• Pinch of cream of tartar
• 2 egg whites at room temperature
Your choice of Strawberry Jam
• 1 cup confectioners sugar
• 1 Tbs. meringue powder
• 1 tsp. vanilla
• 2 Tbs. water
Materials you will need for Macarons:
• Cookie tray
• Silpat Mat
• Piping bags
• Piping tip 2A
• Piping tip #1
• Food coloring (Pink, red, ivory)
• Edible Gold Paint
Directions for Macaron Shells and Filling:
Preheat your over to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. For the macaron shells, begin by sifting your almond flour and confectioners sugar using your sieve. Do this over a large bowl. Next, add your egg whites to the mixer. With your whisk attachment, beat your mixer on medium/high speed until the egg whites begin to foam. Add your cream of tartar and continue mixing until the mixture has a soft peak.
Add your superfine sugar and continue beating the mixture on high for eight minutes. After eight minutes, begin to add your food coloring. I chose to add pink and ivory to create a very light pink. Mix for another 20 seconds or until the color is uniform.
Now you will want to add your almond flour/confectioners sugar mixer to the egg white mixture. You want to fold the ingredients with your spatula. Make sure you get the right consistency — you will do about 50-60 folds so the consistency mimics that of lava. The top of the batter should look smooth and shiny.
Next you will want to fill your piping bag with the batter using your piping tip 2A. Once you have the piping bag filled, begin piping heart shells onto your cookie tray lined with the Silpat mat. You may want to trace hearts onto a piece of paper and place underneath the Silpat mat to make sure you have even heart shells. Pipe enough batter into each shell so that the tops are smooth and shiny.
After you finish piping all of your shells, gently tap the tray on a hard surface to eliminate the air bubbles. You will let the macarons sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes so they can develop a matte top. Once the tops of the macarons are matte, put them in the over for ten minutes. They should come out with a smooth top and foot around the edge. It’s okay if they do not come out perfect, it takes some time to perfect the shells.
After you have let the macarons cool for 20 minutes, gently remove them from the silpat mat and begin to fill the shells with strawberry jam. Fill one macaron shell with the jam and then gently sandwich another macaron shell on top. Repeat this step for the remaining shells.
Directions for decorating:
Now it’s time to decorate! We need to make a royal icing for the decorations, so using your whisk attachment, mix together your confectioners sugar, meringue powder, vanilla and water for 3 minutes. You will want to create a 20-second with your royal icing. This means you need to add enough water to the icing so that when you drag a ling through the top of the icing, it takes 20 seconds for the line to disappear. Add some red and pink food coloring to the icing and thoroughly mix the colors together.
Fill your icing in a piping bag with piping tip #1 and begin piping lips onto the tops of your macarons. Let this icing dry for a half an hour. Once the icing is dry, take a paintbrush and create ridges on the lips using your edible gold paint. If you don’t have gold, you can use red food coloring to paint the ridges of the lips.