How to Make Raspberry Macarons

How to Make Raspberry Macarons

RASPBERRY MACARONS

 

Makes 20 pains au chocolat

  • Croissant Dough
  • 40 chocolate baking sticks,
  • (3 inches by ½ inch thick)
  • Egg Wash

For this recipe, we use Cacao Barry 44% chocolate baking sticks.

Spray three sheet pans with nonstick spray and line with parchment paper.

Lightly flour the work surface. Remove one piece of dough from the freezer and position it on the work surface with a short end toward you; transfer the second piece of dough to the refrigerator. Roll the dough out to a rectangle about 19 by 9 inches.

Turn the dough so a long side is facing you and trim it to a rectangle 17½ by 8 inches.

Cut the dough lengthwise in half, then cut each half into five 4-by-3 ½-inch rectangles.

Set a chocolate baking stick H inch up from the bottom of each rectangle. Turn the bottom edge up and over to cover the baking stick. Set a second baking stick next to the folded dough. Brush the top of the dough with egg wash, roll the dough over the second stick, and continue to roll, finishing with the seam on the bottom. Set on one of the sheet pans. Repeat with the remaining 9 dough rectangles, spacing them evenly on the sheet pans.

Remove the second piece of dough from the refrigerator and, if necessary, let sit at room temperature until warmed enough to roll, then repeat to make 10 more pains au chocolat.

Brush the pains au chocolat with egg wash. Cover the pans with plastic tubs and or cardboard boxes and let proof for about 2 hours. When the dough is delicately pressed with a finger, the impression should remain.

Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F (convection or standard; see Note).

Brush the pains au chocolat again with egg wash. If using a convection oven, reduce the heat to 325°F. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a convection oven, 35 to 40 minutes in a standard oven, rotating the pans once halfway through baking and separating the pains if they are touching, until the tops are a rich golden brown and no portions, particularly between the layers, look undercooked. Set the pans on a rack and cool completely.

The pains au chocolat are best the day they are baked, but they can be wrapped individually in a few layers of plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 month.

Note on Baking the Pains au Chocolat: If you have two ovens, now is the time to use both. If not, move the third sheet pan, still covered, to a cooler spot in the kitchen while the others bake. Then, if baking in a convection oven, return the oven to 350°F before baking.

STEP 1: VANILLA MACARONS - BASE FOR RASPBERRY MACARONS

Makes 14 macarons

Macarons:

  • 1 ¾ cups + 2 ½ tablespoons (212 grams) almond flour/meal
  • 1 ¾ cups + 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup + 1 ½ tablespoons egg whites
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (90 grams) egg whites
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 1 cup + 3 tablespoons (236 grams) granulated sugar, plus a pinch for the egg whites
  • 2/3 cup (158 grams) water

Vanilla Buttercream Filling:

  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons French Buttercream
  • ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise

 

You’ll need a Thermapen or other candy thermometer, a pastry bag with a ½-inch plain tip, and a pastry bag with a ½-inch plain tip. Baking in a convection oven is preferable; the tops of macarons baked in a standard oven often develop small speckles, which can affect the texture (though not the flavor).

For the macarons: Because the cookies will be sandwiched, it is important that they be as close in size as possible. Even if you are proficient with a pastry bag, we suggest making a template, as we do. Use a compass or a cookie cutter as a guide and a dark marking pen, such as a fine-tip Sharpie.

Lay a sheet of parchment paper on the work surface with a long side closest to you. Trace 4 evenly spaced 2 ¼-inch circles along the top long edge, leaving 1 inch of space around them. Trace 3 circles below them, spacing them between the first circles. Continue with another row of 4, followed by another row
of 3.

Turn the parchment over and lay it on a sheet pan. Lift up each corner of the parchment and spray the underside with nonstick spray to keep  it from blowing up while the cookies are baking. Repeat with

a second sheet pan and piece of parchment paper.

Preheat the oven to 350°F (convection) or 400°F (standard).

Place the almond flour in a food processor and pulse to grind it as fine as possible.

Sift the almond flour and powdered sugar into a large bowl and whisk together. Mound the almond flour mixture, then make a 4-inch well in the center, leaving a layer of the flour at the bottom. Pour in the 82 grams/ ¼  cup plus 1 ½ tablespoons egg whites and combine with a spatula. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and add them to the mixture, stirring until evenly distributed. Set aside.

Place the remaining 90 grams/ ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Combine the 236 grams/1 cup plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and the water in a small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until the syrup reaches 203°F/110°C.

Letting the syrup continue to cook, add the pinch of sugar to the egg whites, turn the mixer to medium speed, and whip to soft peaks. If the whites reach soft peaks before the syrup reaches 248°F/120°C, reduce the speed to the lowest setting, just to keep them moving.

When the syrup reaches 248°F/120°C, remove the pan from the heat. Turn the mixer to medium-low speed, and slowly add the syrup, pouring it between the side of the bowl and the whisk; the meringue will deflate. Increase the speed to medium and whip for 5 minutes, or until the whites hold stiff, glossy peaks. Although the bowl will still be warm to the touch, the meringue should have cooled; if not, continue to whip until it is cool.

Fold one-third of the meringue into the almond mixture, then continue adding the whites a little at a time (you may not use them all) until when you fold a portion of the batter over on itself, the “ribbon” slowly moves. The mixture shouldn’t be so stiff that it holds its shape without moving at all, but it shouldn’t be so loose that it dissolves into itself and does not maintain the ribbon; it is better for the mixture to be slightly stiff than too loose.

Transfer the mixture to the pastry bag with the H-inch tip. Hold the bag upright H inch above the center of one of the traced circles and pipe out enough of the mixture to fill in the circle. Lift away the pastry bag and fill the remaining circles on the first pan. Lift up the sheet pan and tap the bottom of the pan to spread the batter evenly and smooth any peaks left by the pastry bag.

If using a convection oven, bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the tops are shiny and crisp. If using a standard oven, place the sheet pan in the oven, immediately lower the oven temperature to 325°F, and bake for 9 to 12 minutes, until the tops are shiny and crisp. Set the pan on a cooling rack and cool completely. If using a standard oven, preheat it to 350°F again.

Pipe the remaining meringue mixture into the circles on the second sheet pan and bake as directed above. Let cool completely.

For the Filling: Place the buttercream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on medium-low speed until smooth and fluffy. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean, add them to the buttercream, and mix on low for about 30 seconds to distribute the seeds evenly.

To fill the cookies: Transfer the buttercream to the pastry bag with the 3/8-inch tip.

Remove the macarons from the parchment paper. Turn half of them over. Starting in the center, pipe 15 grams/1 tablespoon of the buttercream in a spiral pattern on one upside-down macaron, not quite reaching the edges. Top with a second macaron and press gently to spread the buttercream to the edges. Repeat with the remaining macarons and filling.

The macarons are best if wrapped individually in a few layers of plastic wrap and frozen for at least 24 hours or up to 2 weeks. Defrost in the refrigerator for 3 hours, then bring to room temperature before serving. They can be served the day they are made or stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

 

STEP 2: RASPBERRY MACARONS

 

For this recipe, we use Chefmaster Liqua-Gel Rose Pink food coloring.

For the macarons, omit the vanilla bean and fold 3 or 4 drops pink food coloring into the finished meringue mixture. For the filling, substitute 200 grams/1 1/3 cups Basic Buttercream for the French Buttercream and omit the vanilla bean. Beat the buttercream as directed, then add 50 grams/2 tablespoons Raspberry Jam and mix for 1 minute, or until evenly combined. If adding a jam center (see Note), use 80 grams/3 ½ tablespoons additional Raspberry Jam.

Note: At the bakery, we sometimes fill the macarons with “bull’s-eyes”. Pipe buttercream around the edge of each bottom macaron and then place a small amount of curd or jam in the center of each.

Be creative with buttercream and flavor centers. For example, we like to make a peanut butter and jelly macaron. Peanut butter buttercream is piped around the edge and the center is filled with jam.

We color the shells with a combination of Chefmaster Buckeye Brown, Violet, and Red-Red.

 

STEP 3: BASIC BUTTERCREAM

 

Makes 3 cups (450 grams)

  • ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon egg whites
  • ¾ cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons + 2 ¼ teaspoons (33 grams)
  • 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon (42 grams) water
  • 8 ounces (227 grams) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature

Buttercream is one of the most important basics in the pastry kitchen. It’s not essential that you use a high-fat butter, just the best quality butter you have access to.

Place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.

Place the 150 grams/ 3/4 cup sugar in a small saucepan, add the water, and stir to moisten the sugar.

Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, and simmer until the syrup reaches 230°/100°C.

Letting the syrup continue to cook, turn the mixer to medium speed, gradually pour in the remaining 33 grams/2 tablespoons plus 2 ¼ teaspoons sugar into the whites, and whip until the whites are beginning to form very loose peaks. If the whites are ready before the syrup reaches 248°F/120°C, turn the mixer to the lowest setting just to keep them moving.

When the syrup reaches 248°F/120°C, remove the pan from the heat. Turn the mixer to medium-low speed and slowly add the syrup to the whites, pouring it between the side of the bowl and the whisk. Increase the speed to medium-high and whisk for 15 minutes, or until the bottom of the bowl is at room temperature and the whites hold stiff peaks. (If the mixture is warm, it will melt the butter.)

 

STEP 4: RASPBERRY OR CHERRY JAM

 

Makes 1 ¼ cups (460 grams)

  • ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon (62 grams) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon (62 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon (10 grams) apple pectin
  • 17.6 ounces (500 grams) Raspberry or cherry puree

Raspberry is the pastry chef’s go-to fruit. It has a perfect sweet-tart balance that works well in countless desserts. Raspberry jam can be spread on cookies or on croissants or used to add an extra dimension to a tart. And it’s very easy to make: simply bring all the ingredients to a simmer long enough for the pectin—the gelling agent—to activate, and you’re done. You can also make a cherry version.

For this recipe, we use Boiron or Perfect Puree fruit puree.

Line a sheet pan with a Silpat. Combine 62 grams/ ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar and the pectin in a small bowl.

Combine the fruit puree with the remaining 62 grams/ ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoons sugar in a nonreactive pot, preferably lined copper, and stir over medium-high heat until it comes to a rolling boil, skimming off any foam that rises to the top. Stir in the pectin mixture and continue to stir as it comes to a boil. Boil, stirring for 3 minutes to activate the pectin. Pour the jam onto the prepared pan and let cool to room temperature.

Transfer the jam to a covered container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

 

Excerpted from Bouchon Bakery by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel (Artisian Books). Copyright © 2012