We are a macaron loving household. When I make a trip into London, I always try to make time for a detour to Laduree or Paul to enjoy a few of their little beauties. But I also enjoy making them at home as we can choose our own colours and flavours and they are quite an investment in the shops, especially buying enough to satisfy four of us! I have been admiring Matcha Macarons for some time and have been loving the photos of them all over Pinterest so it's time to have a go at them myself. I recently bought myself some Matcha Tea from The Tea House in Covent Garden, although this organic tea will set you back nearly £20 for 30G so it's to be used sparingly!
I use the Italian Meringue method to make my macarons as it's been the most reliable way for me. You do need a sugar thermometer but it's a very straightforward and for me, foolproof way of making the batter. I looked at various recipes on the web and decided to experiment with my own quantities of Matcha as it's quite an unusual flavour. I added a half teaspoon of tea to the batter but the flavour has not come through very strongly so I think it could be upped a little next time. I filled them with a traditional buttercream and added a half tablespoon to this and this flavour strength is about right for my taste buds.
When I'd made them I decided to add a little sparkle so sprayed them with gold lustre, but when this ran out mid-decorating, I then brushed Sugarflair Edible Tint in gold over one shell of each macaron and both of these worked really well. For a touch of glamour, I also added a little edible gold leaf. I always think macarons make a lovely gift and once you've found a recipe that works for you, they're quite simple to make and very tasty to eat. And there's lots of experimenting with colours and favours. The perfect little Parisienne treat :)
Matcha Macarons Makes 12 (24 shells sandwiched together)
- 100G CASTER SUGAR
- 37ML WATER
- 80G EGG WHITES (I USE TWO CHICKS LIQUID EGG WHITES THAT YOU CAN BUY IN THE SUPERMARKET)
- 100G GROUND ALMONDS
- 100G ICING SUGAR
- ½ TSP MATCHA TEA POWDER
- 115G BUTTER
- 125G ICING SUGAR (SIFTED)
- 1 TBSP MILK
- 1 TBSP MATCHA TEA
- Line two baking street with baking paper - if you're worried about the consistency of your macaron circles when you come to pipe them, you can draw little circles onto the paper as a guide. My macarons are around 5cm in diameter.
- Put 40g of the egg whites into a mixer with the balloon whisk.
- Put the caster sugar and water into a saucepan and heat without stirring to 95 degrees and then start the mixer on a low speed.
- When the sugar syrup temperature reaches 105 degrees, increase the speed of the mixer and beat the egg whites to a stiff peak.
- When the sugar mixture reaches 114 degrees, remove from the heat and pour the syrup in a slow, steady stream down the side of the bowl (not into the middle as you don't want to remove all the air) with the mixer still running.
- Continue beating for 5 to 10 minutes until the outside of the bowl cools down.
- Whilst beating the meringue in the mixer, prepare the almond paste.
- Mix together the icing sugar, ground almonds and ½ tsp of matcha tea powder until they're well mixed. You can sieve them if you want to give a smoother finish on your macarons.
- Add the remaining egg whites (40g) and mix until you form a paste. You can also add food colouring at this point - I added Sugarflair Spectral Paste Concentrate in green - just add a little to start with as you can always make the colour stronger, but you can't take it away once added!
- Then once your paste is ready, add a third of the meringue and mix thoroughly - don't worry about knocking the air out at this stage as this is intended to loosen the paste a little before adding the rest of the meringue.
- Add the remaining meringue, folding it in until it's mixed but be careful not to over-mix at this stage as you want to keep the air in it.
- Fill a piping bag with a circle nozzle (number 1A works well for this) and pipe out small circles into the baking paper. Sometime you may find that your macarons have a little peak on top but this flattens out during the next stage.
- I generally leave my macarons for at least an hour to form a thin crust on top - you should be able to lightly touch the macaron with your finger and it springs back without leaving a fingerprint.
- When you're ready to bake them, pre-heat your oven to 150 degrees and bake them for around 14 minutes.
- After you take them out of the oven, slide them off the baking tray onto a cool counter and then pop them off the baking paper and let them cool down.
- Make your buttercream by beating the butter until it's light and fluffy.
- Then add the icing sugar and matcha tea and mix until they're fully incorporated.
- Finally add the milk and beat until it's smooth.
- When you're ready to fill them, fill a small piping bag with the buttercream and a regular tip (I use the same one as to make the macarons but you can be creative here and use a star tip or other nozzle).
- Pipe a small amount of buttercream into the middle of each macaron and then sandwich them together.
- Your macarons are now ready to eat - some say they're better the next day - if they hang around that long!