It's been a long time since I dared attempt macaroons again. The first batch I ever made came out perfectly and I was very impressed with myself. Then I got cocky. I thought they would always come out like that. I was wrong. After a few failed attempts I eventually just gave up on them.
But, the other day I had a sudden urge to make them. So seeing as it is Mothers Day today, I thought I would treat my Mum to a batch! This recipe is from John Whaite's first book.
130g ground almonds
170g icing sugar
3 egg whites
75g caster sugar
Yellow food colouring
230g icing sugar
Zest of 2 lemons
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1. Line two baking trays with greaseproof paper. Draw round a 10p piece to give you an idea of how big to pipe the macaroon shells later on.
2. Blitz the ground almonds and icing sugar together in a food processor. Then sieve into a large bowl and put to one side.
3. In a metal bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric hand mixer until they form soft, not stiff peaks. Add the caster sugar a tablespoon at a time. Once you've added half of the sugar, add the food colouring. Continue adding the caster sugar, beating with each addition. Once all the sugar has been added, beat for another 30 seconds, then stop.
4. Add the coloured meringue to the ground almond mixture. Using a spatula or metal spoon, mix around the edge of the bowl, then slice down the middle to incorporate both mixtures together.
5. Once combined, put the batter into a piping bag and pipe 10p piece size blobs on the prepared trays. Bash each tray on the worktop 3 or 4 times to dispel any extra air. Leave for an hour to form a shiny coat.
6. Preheat the oven to 160 fan. Bake each tray separately, for 12 minutes, opening the oven door every 4 minutes.
7. While the shells are cooling, mix the butter and icing sugar together in a food processor. Add the lemon zest and juice and chill.
8. Sandwich the shells together with some of the butter cream and serve!
I find getting the colour right really tricky. I don't know whether yellow is just a tricky colour but they always seem to come out slightly different to how I want them to. I was very pleased with this batch though. They're crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside and very, very lemony! Mum really liked them, which is all the matters today! Happy Mothers Day! X Bo
P.S. I tweeted a picture of my macaroons to John. Pretty pleased with his response...