The macaron. Two cookies with a crisp outside layer, soft on the inside and filled with vanilla bean buttercream. One of the best treats that you can get at any of the top bakeries out there for a pretty penny. Most people hear about how hard they are to make and are afraid to try their hand at this delicious confection. Fear not! With the right tips and just a little hands-on time this recipe can be your best friend.
Macarons With Vanilla Bean Filling
3 egg whites
1/4 cup white sugar
1 2/3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup almond flour
*tip on how to make your own almond flour at the bottom of the recipe*
Line your baking sheet with a silicone baking sheet or parchment paper and set aside. Sift together the confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a medium bowl. Do not skip this step.
Beat the egg whites in a stand mixer on high until it is foamy and thick. Add in the white sugar and continue mixing on high until it forms stiff peaks and looks glossy.
Fold the almond flour mixture into the egg whites. About 40 times. Test the batter by placing some in a small ziploc bag and piping out a 1.5″ diameter. If the macaron mixture holds its shape then you need to fold it a few more times. If if flattens out into a disc then it is ready to pipe onto the silicone mat or parchment paper.
Place the rest of the macaron batter into a piping bag fitted with a plain round tip. Pipe the cookies onto the baking sheets in 1.5″ rounds leaving space between each cookie. Leave the cookies out on the counter at room temperature for 1 hour. This step is also very important.
Preheat oven to 285 degrees (140 Celsius) and bake the cookies for 10 minutes; let the cookies cool before filling.
Vanilla Bean Buttercream Filling
1/2 cup room temperature butter
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
(alternatively use 1 tablespoon vanilla extract)
2 tablespoons heavy cream
Beat the butter in a stand mixer on medium speed for a few minutes. Add the vanilla bean and mix into the butter. Incorporate 1/2 cup of the sugar at a time followed by 1 tablespoon of heavy cream until desired consistency is achieved. Place the buttercream into a piping bag with a plain round tip, or just snip the tip of the bag off, and pipe an even layer of buttercream onto one cookie. Place another cookie on the top.
To add a confectioners’ sugar decal to the top of the cookie just place a template over the cookie and sift some icing sugar over the template then carefully remove! I just used a thick piece of paper and cut the heart out of the center. Voila!
*tip* to make your own almond flour place the almonds into a food processor. Start on low and work your way to high, blending the almonds until light and fluffy. Then place the almonds into a mortar and grind the almonds until it’s smooth in consistency.