Monday, March 3, 2014

Macaron Monday: Caramel Macchiato French Macarons with Salted Caramel Filling


Sometimes I think I dream in caramel. Caramel favor, caramel colors. I can never get enough. Prefer it over chocolate any day.



When I am in a coffee mood, it's caramel syrup I turn to to give java that extra oomph. Kraft wrapped caramel squares were my favorite halloween treat as a kid. I would seriously horde them and then make caramel apples. 



Consequently, any item in the market that has the word "caramel" in that catches my eye usually finds its way into my shopping cart. This caramel macchiato powder was no exception. When I purchased it, I knew it was destined for something greater than just mixing with hot water.



And here's the result. These macaron shells are so flavorful and melt in your mouth delicious I almost considered posting the recipe alone and unfilled.



However, of course there was a tub of homemade salted caramel sitting in my fridge.Of course there was.  Once spied, it was impossible not to use it to amp up the caramel flavor in these babies. 



Even for non caramel addicts, this French macaron flavor packs a sweet mocha flavor punch that's appropriate way past coffee time.



 Caramel Macchiato French Macarons
with Salted Caramel Filling

For the Caramel Macchiato shells:

Use a kitchen scale for precise measurements.

Ingredients:
  • 90 grams of egg whites - aged at least 2 days. Let them sit out on the counter uncovered.
  • 50 grams fine granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons caramel macchiato powder
  • 200 grams of powdered sugar
  • 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.



Directions:
  • 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 two tablespoons of the powdered sugar/almond mixture and discard. Replace with two tablespoons of the instant caramel macchiato powder. Pulse or whisk until combined thoroughly.
  • 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/caramel macchiato powder 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.
For the Salted Caramel Filling:

The best recipe for a homemade version I have ever found hands down is here from Evil Shenanigans:

Directions:

  • When you have finished making the caramel, refrigerate until it's chilled completely and thickened.
  •  Use a butter knife to spread the finished salted caramel on one of the shells and cover with its match.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Lora!
    These are seriously to die for. I love caramel... even, don't hate me, caramel sundaes at mcdonalds... with crushed nuts. Haven't had one in years but I wouldn't turn it down.
    Coffee and caramel macaron is genius.

    ReplyDelete

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