Monday, January 20, 2014

Macaron Monday: Banana French Macarons with Espresso Rum Filling

This French macaron flavor reminds me of a tropical hot drink. A hybrid. Banana and rum evoke tropical breezes but the espresso and rum together remind me of warming up against chilly Winter air with a hot beverage laced with alcohol.

Banana, espresso, rum...what could be wrong? Nothing I tell you. This French macaron is packed with flavor and perfect to serve in summer or winter.

I used ground up freeze dried bananas from Trader Joe's in the shells for flavor. I have a rainbow of leftover buttercream flavors and colors in my freezer and I'm sorta on a mission to use them up. The espresso is the most abundant. I defrosted it and when blended with a few teaspoons of dark rum, it took on a whole other personality.

I did add some powdered yellow color to the shells for effect but you can leave them plain. With both the polarizing buzz of espresso and chill effect of the rum. There is a whole lot going on here, all of it delicious.

Banana French Macarons with 
Espresso Rum Filling

For the Banana French macaron shells:

Use a kitchen scale for precise measurements.

  • 90 grams of egg whites - aged at least 2 days. Let them sit out on the counter uncovered.
  • 25-50 grams of fine granulated sugar
  • 200 grams of powdered sugar 
  • 2 tablespoons ground dehydrated bananas
  • 110 Grams of almond flour*
  • Pinch of cream of tarter
  • Pinch of salt
*You can buy almond flour that has been ground with or without the skin. I use the later (blanched). The former looks really nice if you are not coloring the shells. You can also grind your own almond flour by putting whole or sliced almonds in a food processor or blender. If you do, make sure you throw a little of the powdered sugar in to prevent the almonds from forming a paste.

  • Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or use a silpat.
  • Sift the powdered sugar and almond flour together or pulse them together briefly in a food processor. Make sure there are no large pieces. 
  • Remove and discard two tablespoons of the mixture and whisk in the 2 tablespoons of the banana powder and set aside. 
  • Whip the egg whites. When they start to get foamy, slowly add the sugar. Continue whipping until you can turn the bowl upside down and nothing slides out. Add the pinches of salt and cream of tartar.
  • Add the powdered sugar/almond/banana mixture to the egg white mixture and fold, using quick strokes at first then slow down. The batter should have a "flowing like lava" consistency. Make a peak of the batter and if it does not disappear after 5-7 seconds, keep folding. If it's running all over the place, you will probably have to start over. 
  • Place a pastry bag fitted with a round shaped tip in a tall water and and fold the edges down around the glass.
  • Fill the pastry bag with the macaron batter, twist the open top to secure and pipe circles onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or on a Silpat. 
  • Let the macarons dry for about a half hour or until they harden.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Place the macarons on the middle rack in the oven. I keep the oven door propped open with a dish towel or wooden spoon.
  • I place another empty baking sheet on top to prevent the shells from becoming toasted and discolored.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes.
  • When checking them after 10 minutes or so, if the ones in the back of the sheet seem to be cooking faster that the ones in front, flip the tray around.
  • To test to see if they are done, peel the baking paper or silpat back, if the shell comes off easily, they are done.
  • If you do have a problem with the shells sticking to the surface when removed from the oven, lift up the baking paper and pour a bit of water underneath. this will steam them off the paper.
  • Transfer to a baking rack and let cool completely before matching up the shells into pairs according to size and then fill.

For the Espresso Rum Buttercream:

  • 1 stick butter at room temperature
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tablespoon espresso powder
  • 1-2 tablespoons dark rum
  • Place the butter, 2 cups of the powdered sugar and the cream in a mixer and cream together.
  • Mix in the vanilla extract.
  • Add the rest of the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until combined. If the mixture is too liquid, add more powdered sugar.
  • Beat in the espresso powder, then the rum.
  • Fit a pastry bag with a large round tip and fill with the buttercream.

1 comment:

  1. These look scrumptious! I hope you write a book one day filled with all your wonderful and oh so creative macaron recipes.


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