As I mentioned yesterday, blog cooking groups are perfect for me because an actual in-person cooking group is difficult when most of your spare time comes when normal human beings are, like, sleeping. And given the fact that I’ve been obsessed with perfecting my macaron-making technique since I first made them just about four months ago, the MacTweets group is perfect for me. I joined up last month, and had such fun checking out everybody’s creations that I decided to take on this month’s MacTweets Mac Attack Challenge: Macs are in the Air, which challenged us all to make macarons in the spirit of Valentine’s Day.
Red velvet macarons it is. But just macarons? Is that enough? Not if you are insane. No, then you have to make a bouquet of macaron flowers.
And you know what’s cool about this bouquet? You can totally do this after Valentine’s Day. For any occasion. To replace flowers. Take note of this recipe. You might want to use it some day.
Because if some dude showed up at my door with a bouquet of macarons and truffles, it would be the best thing ever.
Actually, I’d probably call the police. Details. Anyway, the recipe.
Red Velvet Macaron Shell Ingredients (from Tartlette)
25 grams granulated sugar
3 egg whites
200 grams powdered sugar
110 grams blanched almonds
Red food coloring, as needed
To begin, grind the almonds and powdered sugar in a food processor until finely ground and a uniform mixture is achieved. Set aside. Whip the egg whites until foamy, then continue whipping while slowly adding the granulated sugar. Whip until the mixture is stiff, like shaving cream. Add food coloring until desired color is achieved, then carefully fold the meringue the almond-powdered sugar mixture in fewer than 50 strokes, taking care to scrape the bottom of the bowl on the strokes.
Now you may remember that I’ve previously had issues with going nutty with food coloring when making macarons. This time, it was intentional. These shells are, after all, for red velvet macarons.
Once you’ve made your stoplight-red batter, pipe it into rounds about 1 ½” in diameter on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Let the piped rounds sit for 45 minutes, then bake at 280° F, for 20 minutes.
Feet! And pretty smooth tops. Can I brag for a minute? These shells were so good that when I took the finished product to a party, people asked me where I BOUGHT these guys.
Bought? Ha. I guess I’m getting better at this stuff.
After admiring my shells for a few minutes, I got to work on the red velvet filling.
Red Velvet Ganache Ingredients
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped (Callebaut 25.9% Cocoa White Chocolate)
2 ounces milk chocolate (Callebaut 33.6% Cocoa Milk Chocolate)
¼ cup heavy cream
Red food coloring, as needed
Heat the cream and chocolates over low heat until chocolate melts. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature, stir in food coloring until ganache is bright red.
Spread ganache between macaron shells and sandwich to achieve your final product.
Now those are very nice, but I had decided to make a bouquet. I needed greenery.
Enter mint white chocolate truffles. They totally look like greenery. In an abstract way.
Mint White Chocolate Truffle Ingredients
12 oz white chocolate
1/4 cup crème de menthe
Heat the white chocolate over very low heat until melted, then add the crème de menthe and stir until smooth.
After the mixture cools to room temperature, roll into ¾” balls and affix to decorative sticks for presentation.
This recipe yields about three beautiful, edible bouquets. Or one very impressive bouquet. Remember this the next time you feel the need to get flowers for somebody. This is tastier.
Would you rather get flowers or a macaron bouquet as a gift?