French Almond Macaroons
For the macaroons
10 ounces confectioner's sugar
10 ounces finely ground almonds
5 large egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar
1/3 cup granulated or superfine baker's sugar
Red and yellow food coloring (any spring time color can be used)
For the filling
9 ounces unsalted butter, softened
5 ounces confectioner's sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
1 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Orange Blossom Water
1/2 cup raspberries
1 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Rose Water
For macaroons: Using a fine sieve, sift confectioners' sugar and finely ground almonds, pushing through with a wooden spoon.
Using an electric mixer, whisk egg whites until foamy. Add cream of tartar and whisk until soft peaks form. Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and whisk until dissolved. Stir meringue mixture into almond mixture (mixture will be stiff), then halve. Tint one half pink, the other half orange.
Spoon 1 mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip. Pipe walnut sized rounds onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets, then repeat with other mixture. Set meringues aside, uncovered, on baking sheets for 1 hour (this will help minimize cracking).
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F/150 degrees C and bake macaroons, 2 baking sheets at a time, swapping sheets halfway through cooking, for 20 minutes or until firm to the touch. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheets. Slide a knife under each macaroon to release from paper, then store in an airtight container until ready to fill.
For filling: Using an electric mixer, beat butter until pale and fluffy, then gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until combined. Transfer half the mixture from the bowl to another bowl and add orange zest and orange blossom water. Stir to combine. Add raspberries and rose water to remaining mixture in mixing bowl and, using the electric mixer, beat until well combined. Sandwich pink macaroons with raspberry filling and orange macaroons with orange filling.
Makes 50 sandwiched macaroons
Tip: To create a perfectly smooth top on your macaroons, dip a finger into a bowl of water and gently smooth out any peak
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