If you have ever been to Paris in the spring or anytime, chances are, you have enjoyed a Parisian macaron at one of the delightful patisseries throughout the city. They are beautiful, delicate, pastel sandwich cookies of different flavors with a light cream filling between two meringue-like cookies that are as light as air. The cookies are as delicious as they are beautiful. I decided that I just had to have an easy version of the Parisian macaroon and thought that you might enjoy the results as well. So, my assistant, Mary Ellen Lawrence, and I came up with this easy, delicious Mississippi version after only five tries. As you can see from the photograph, they are beautiful, and Emily Burgess, our food editor and cook extraordinaire, tasted three of them on her way home and emailed immediately for the recipe. Give this easy, delicious macaron a try, and enjoy them in Mississippi in the spring and early summer!
6 ounces blanched almonds
1 2/3 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 large egg whites, room temperature
¼ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Pulse almonds in food processor until finely ground. Add confectioners’ sugar to almonds and pulse until combined; set aside. Beat egg whites and salt with mixer until foamy. Add sugar, a tablespoon at a time, beating after each. Add food coloring, if desired. Beat until stiff peaks form. Stir whites into almond mixture until incorporated. Transfer mixture to pastry bag with round tip #2A and pipe 1 ½-inch circles on parchment lined baking sheets. Let stand at room temperature 5 minutes. Bake for 10 minutes on the upper rack and 10 minutes on the lower rack of the oven. Cool for one hour on baking sheet placed on wire rack.
Yield: 24 sandwich cookies
Filling for pink macarons:
½ (12-ounce) container butter cream icing
2 tablespoons strawberry or raspberry jam
Combine icing and jam. Spread onto half of macaroons and sandwich with remaining macarons.
Filling for green macarons:
½ (12-ounce) container buttercream icing
1 teaspoon lime juice or to taste or 2 drops of pistachio oil or to taste
Combine icing and lime juice or pistachio oil. Spread onto half of macaroons and sandwich with remaining macaroons.