Macarons au Citron Jaune et Basilic as the French would call it. 🙂
I have found myself cooking with lemon a lot last few weeks. I think the famous proverb, modified, would suit me best “A lemon a day keeps the doctor away”. 😉 So when I had some lemon basil cream leftover from my Lemon Basil Cheesecake I thought they would be ideal to fill up some macarons.
The lemon basil cream is so versatile and can be used in different desserts, for example, to fill eclairs or profiteroles, to fill up tarts, as a filling for a layered cake. Sky is the limit I’d say. 🙂
Makes 24-30 depending on the size
For the pâté à macaron :
93 g icing sugar, sifted
93 g ground almonds
1 medium free-range egg white
For the Italian meringue :
1 medium free-range egg white
1 drop lemon juice or 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
93 g caster sugar
1.5 tbsp water
Yellow Food coloring (optional)
Heat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3 and line two baking trays with baking paper.
Pâté à macaron:
In a large bowl, mix the icing sugar, ground almonds and egg whites to form a paste.
Italian meringue :
Whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar(or lemon juice) in a kitchen mixer on a medium speed.
Meanwhile, place the sugar and water in a small pan and cook over a high heat until it has reached 117C/242F or the ‘soft ball’ stage.I do not own a thermometer so I just tell when the bubbles are almost the same size, that’s the stage we are looking to achieve here.
Reduce the speed on the mixer to its lowest setting and pour the sugar syrup from the sides of the bowl onto the firmly whipped egg whites.
Increase the speed to high and continue to whisk for 1 minute.
Now add the food colouring, I have used golden yellow and brown (4:2) and whisk again until the meringue is coloured uniformly.
Fold the Italian meringue mixture into the pâté à macaron until it reaches the ribbon stage – this is when a spoonful of the mixture poured back into the bowl sits like a ribbon on the surface. Do not over-mix or the macaroon will crack when cooked.
Place the mixture in a piping bag fitted with a 8mm/¼in nozzle.
Pipe on 3cm/1in discs on the baking trays, at least 2cm/¾in apart. Tap the tray on a work surface to release any air bubbles. Let the macarons rest for 20-30 minutes before baking.
Bake in the oven for eight minutes.As soon as the macaroons form feet open and shut the oven door to release some steam.
After eight minutes remove from the oven and then leave on a cooling rack until completely cold.
Lemon Basil Cream :
Soak the gelatin sheet in a bowl of cold water until softened, 5 to 10 minutes.
Pour the egg into a heavy saucepan and add the sugar. Whisk the eggs with the sugar.
Whisk in the lemon juice. Continue to whisk over medium heat.
Tear the basil leaves into the pan and cook just until the cream comes to a boil and thickens.
Whisk in the softened gelatin.
Strain the cream over the softened butter. Using a hand mixer, beat the cream and butter for one minute until smooth.
Spoon about one teaspoon of the lemon basil cream onto the flat side of a cooled macaroon and top with another macaroon to make a sandwich.