I’m a girl from a tropical island. Winter is not supposed to be cold. Even though I still complain how brutal winter can be here, I do love seasons here in New England. Every season has its own beauty. I have been in New England for ten years, and I am still amazed by how season change here. When I think about autumn, I think about apple, pumpkin and cranberry. When I think about winter, I think about pear and pomegranate.
I tried Eggnog for the first time when I came to Boston the first winter. So, what’s the best dessert to make to impress your guests at the holiday party? Eggnog French Macarons!
French macarons are not easy to master. It’s all about getting the right recipe and the right technique. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- You have to whisk the egg white until soft peak stage.
- When you are folding the egg white with the almond flour and confectioner’s sugar, remember to fold it until the texture is similar to lava cake batter. Don’t over mix and don’t under mix it.
- Another trick is if you can get superfine almond flour from King Arthur, you can totally skip the steps of blending almond flour and confectioner’s sugar in food processor and sifting them. You have to whisk them until they are totally mixed well.
- Piping can be tricky. You can go online and download a macaron piping template, such as this link .
- Some pastry chefs use piping tips to pipe macarons, but I don’t think it’s necessary to use piping tips to pipe macarons. The key is to master the piping skill so every single macaron is the same size. A template can be very helpful for beginners!
In France, macarons are typically filled with chocolate ganache fillings or jam. Here in USA, some pastry chefs also fill them with butter-cream. I would like to share a recipe I got from my pastry Chef PJ Waters when I worked for him at Alta Strada, an Italian restaurant in Wellesley. Since it’s holiday season, I gave it my personal twist to make it Eggnog flavored rather than the plain one. PJ’s mascarpone cream has always been my favorite. It’s light, delicious, and very easy to make.
Below, you can read the full recipes for these French macarons with Eggnog Mascarpone cream. French Macaron is not something you can easily learn to master by watching YouTube Video. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave me a massage, or book a private in home lesson with me. It will be fun to make those dainty cookies together. Bon appetite!
Classic French Macaron Recipe
from Chef Delphin Gomes
10 egg whites
9 oz sugar
12 oz almond flour
16 oz confectioner’s sugar
Special equipment: Oven with convection setting, silicone baking mats, Fine-mesh sieve, Pastry bag with Wilton #12 round tip
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F using the convection setting. Line baking sheets with silicone mats.
Measure the confectioners’ sugar and almond flour. Place them into a food processor and blend together. Sift the sugar-almond flour mixture, a little at a time, through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl, pressing with a rubber spatula to pass through as much as possible. It will take a while, and up to 2 tablespoons of coarse almond flour may be left; just toss it.
On high speed, beat the egg whites in the bowl of a standing mixer using a whisk attachment. When the egg whites reach soft peak stage turn machine to low and add sugar. Turn mixer to medium speed and mix approximately 10 mins or until the whipped egg whites appear shiny and the sugar is dissolved.
Transfer the beaten egg whites to the bowl with the almond flour mixture. Draw a rubber spatula halfway through the mixture and fold until incorporated, giving the bowl a quarter turn with each fold.
Add the food coloring and extract. Continue folding and turning, scraping down the bowl, until the batter is smooth and falls off the spatula in a thin flat ribbon, 2 to 3 minutes.
Transfer the batter to a pastry bag fitted with a Wilton #12 round tip. Holding the bag vertically and close to the baking sheet, pipe 1 1/4-inch circles. Firmly tap the baking sheets twice against the counter to release any air bubbles.
Let the cookies sit at room temperature until the tops are no longer sticky to the touch, 15 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the humidity.
Bake the first batch until the tops of the macaroons are crusty and shiny and rise to form a “foot,” about 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. Peel the cookies off the mats and sandwich with a thin layer of filling.
from Chef P.J. Waters, Radius, winner for best Pastry Chef in Boston 2006
1 pound mascarpone
8 ounces sour cream
5 ounces sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
½ teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon smoked cinnamon
1 Tablespoon of rum, for frosting
Beat all the ingredients on HIGH speed in the bowl of a standing mixer using a whisk attachment until the color of the cream turns from shiny to dull.
Assemble the French Macaron.
You can either make it like the sandwich with the eggnog filling.
Or, you can use the macaron cookie like the fruit tart. Use the start piping tip to pipe eggnog filling on top. Sprinkle pomegranate on top. Shaves some dark chocolate on top if you feel like to!