Within the past month I think I've made different flavored macarons at least 10 times, ironically failed at lemon bars twice, finally succeeded at strawberry lemon bars, found my love for almond meal in flour-less chocolate tortes, lemon ricotta cupcakes, caramelized chocolate almonds candies, earl grey and lemon madeleines...
Needless to say, I've got pictures and recipes of everything I've made. Sadly, I just haven't had the time to put anything up. Do I blog about the macarons I just made? Or do I jump back in the kitchen to start on those madeleines? I'd been choosing the kitchen.
However, I am now in Taipei--kitchen-less and without my trusty stand mixer. I'm sure a lot more of my time here will be spent eating out and blogging. Of course I'll soon be blogging about all the amazing meals I'm having here in Taipei, but first, I want to share some of my own creations.
These matcha (green tea) macarons are something I'm particularly proud of. I love the beautiful green color the matcha powder gives to the macaron shells. Although I still followed the basic macaron recipe I've alway used, the slightly bitter matcha powder actually helped to tone down the sweetness a little.
For the filling, I first made an adzuki (red bean) buttercream frosting. I added canned adzuki bean paste to a recipe of swiss meringue buttercream, which was delicious, but a little too sweet for my taste. Thus, for my second batch, I made an adzuki cream cheese filling instead. This was much better balanced--with the slightly tart flavor of cream cheese mellowing out the cloying sweetness of the red bean paste. Finally, a successful combination!
Matcha Macarons with Adzuki Bean Filling
macaron shell recipe adapted from Tartlette
matcha macaron shells
200 g powdered sugar
110 g blanched, slivered almonds
1 tbsp high-quality matcha powder
90 g aged egg whites (about three eggs)
30 g fine granulated sugar
adzuki bean filling
4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
2 oz unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 can adzuki bean paste (can be found at Japanese grocery stores, i.c. Nijiya Market)
for the filling
1. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream softened butter and cream cheese for at least 3 minutes until light and fluffy
2. Slowly add in sifted powdered sugar, mixing well between each addition
3. Fold the can of adzuki bean paste into the cream cheese mixture
4. The filling is now ready to be piped on to the cooled macaron shells
for the macaron shells
1. weigh out the blanched almonds, matcha powder, and powdered sugar
2. grind together in food processor in batches and sift into a bowl--regrind any of the larger pieces left behind until you have a very fine powder
3. weigh out aged egg whites and granulated sugar
4. place egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and begin whisking on high, gradually adding the granulated sugar little by little until you form a stiff meringue
5. fold the dry ingredients into the meringue in two installments. Fold until the ingredients are just mixed in, and you can no longer distinguish meringue from dry ingredients--until there are no noticeable streaks of white or green
6. place batter into a piping bag (large ziploc bag) fitted with a 1/2 inch tip
7. pipe batter onto silicon lined baking sheets in 1 1/2 inch rounds, giving them plenty of space to spread
8. let sit for 20 minutes
9. bake in 300F convection oven for about 15-20 minutes depending on your oven
10. let cool on baking sheets and once cooled, fill with adzuki filling and refrigerate
Couldn't resist--had to take a bite :)
Macarons from the second batch with adzuki cream cheese filling
Valrhona chocolate macarons and matcha macarons