Zumborons!

The citron macaron shell – chewy and crispy goodness.

I love macarons. So when Sydney patissier Adriano Zumbo released a book exclusively on macarons, I had to buy it. $12 (essentially 5 of his macarons) and a couple of weeks later I received the book and started thinking about which macarons to make first. A lot of them had white chocolate in the filling, and as I am trying to avoid lollies and chocolate for October (seriously failing with the chocolate), I had to avoid those as I’d just eat the left over chocolate. I love his toasted marshmallow macaron, but couldn’t pick that either due to the lollies! But I realised I could make marshmallows… so my self-control became non-existant. Oops.

I picked out two macaron flavours (toasted marshmallow and citron – a lemon macaron), made up a shopping list of ingredients that I didn’t have (powdered egg white required a visit to the specialty store, the extra eggs, butter, almond meal and sugars were supermarketable) and utensils I didn’t have (candy thermometer) or wanted to upgrade (drum sieve).

I think the biggest issue I have with making macaron is having an electric oven, which switches on and off to try and maintain a particular temperature. A gas oven (or perhaps a more modern electric oven, although I have no knowledge of these) would be better as I would have a more even temperature during the cooking stage of the macaron than I currently do. Still, they turned out OK – some variation in colour and the first batch from the oven had an air pocket just under the skin. I’m still not 100% happy with the texture of the shell, as I’d like them to be smoother – something to check out before the next batch is made.

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Kiwifruit and lime macarons

Lime macaron shells

While I love butternut snap biscuits, I am yet to find a recipe that has yielded something that resembles the texture and taste of them… so today I am sharing my kiwifruit and lime macaroons, based on the ones in the Australian Women’s Weekly book titled Afternoon Tea. I prepared them for my uni’s Baking Society meeting, where the theme was “fruit.” I had lime zest in the freezer and plenty of kiwis in the fridge, so it seemed like a logical pairing.

Beat 3 aged egg whites to soft peaks and add 55g caster sugar. Fold in 200g sifted icing sugar120g sifted almond meal, the lime zest (to taste) and green food colouring gel. Pipe into 4cm rounds onto a lined tray, leaving about 2.5cm between them. Tap trays so mix spreads a little and stand for 30 minutes.

Bake at 150°C for 15 minutes. This was my second attempt at macaroons – my first batch were strawberry flavoured, and only some had developed feet. This time around, all the shells had feet – although I over-stirred the mixture (late in the folding I decided I wanted a more intense colour) so the shells aren’t that smooth! I’m sure my third batch will only get better.

Once cooled, I filled the shells with kiwifruit puree, that was heated and then had gelatine added.  Although I was impatient and added more gelatine, which sometimes clumped, rather than waiting for the mixture to cool. I’m not sharing that recipe as it still needs work! Lesson learnt, future batches = better.