Sunday, March 7, 2010

Chocolate "French" Almond Macaroons

These macaroons are delightful and sweet.

I knew I was making them right when I took them out of the oven. They plumped up just the right amount and had those little wrinkles in them to let the baker know, "Hey, take me out or I'll burn and taste nasty." Seriously.
When I made them I did also make a non Passover friendly version, because, well, it's not Passover quite yet.

Passover friendly version:
You'll need the following ingredients-
1, 7 ounce tube of almond paste
1 cup, plus 1.5 tbsp granulated sugar
2 large egg whites, room temperature
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 375
In a stand mixer (this is VERY handy. Should you decide to do this by hand, know that you will not need to work your arm muscles at the gym anytime soon), mix the almond paste and sugar until combined. I broke the pieces of almond paste up prior to mixing to help speed up the process. This will take about 5-7 minutes.
Next, mix in the cocoa powder until combined.
Here's the trickier part.
  • SLOWLY add the egg whites...but what I mean by slowly is you want to add a drizzle of egg white at a time.
  • To help you do this, place a spatula as a shield (or to "cut") between the egg white mixture (I used a pyrex that has a spout on it) and the almond paste mixture.
  • Mix well after each addition.
Once the mixture looks more wet, take your spatula and scrape the bowl. Add enough egg white to make the mixture consistent enough to squeeze out of a pastry bag.
Cut the tip off the pastry bag. Fold end over to form a cuff, and fill bag with mixture.

On a cookie sheet, that is well sprayed with cooking spray (or, you could be professional like and use parchment paper, but this is not something I keep in my house), place same shaped dollops of mixture on the pan.

Next sprinkle the tops of the unbaked cookies to be with sugar.

Bake 8-9 minutes per batch.

When they are done, they will have crinkles on the top of them and will have spread a little (make sure you space these babies 1 inch a part on the baking sheet).

Take them out, and sandwich two likewise shaped macaroons together. Voila.
Now for the Non Passover friendly version (a filling of fun!)

Peanut Butter Buttercream:
1 stick of Land o Lake Light salted butter
1/2 cup of all natural creamy peanut butter
1 cup of powdered confectioner sugar

In a stand mixer and using the whisk attachment, cream the butter until fluffy. Next, add the peanut butter and cream the two ingredients together. Last, add the powdered sugar on low speed.

Place mix into a pastry bag, cut the tip off bag, cuff the sleeve, and put a touch of this mixture on each macaroon. Place two cookies together, you have Chocolate Peanut Butter Macaroons!

These make about 20 sandwich cookies.

The facts for the Passover friendly fare:

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 sandwich cookies

Amount per Serving

Calories 92
Calories from Fat 17.6

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 1.95g
Saturated Fat 0.13g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 5.5mg
Total Carbohydrate 17.76g
Dietary Fiber 0.8g
Sugars 15.56g
Protein 1.4g

For the Chocolate Peanut Butter Macaroons:

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 sandwich cookie

Amount per Serving

Calories 143
Calories from Fat 69.8

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 7.75g
Saturated Fat 2.33g
Cholesterol 8mg
Sodium 67.5mg
Total Carbohydrate 15.6g
Dietary Fiber 0.8g
Sugars 12g
Protein 2.8g

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