Shells adapted from Tartelette's recipe
Filling recipe by Dragon
This is my attempt to capture the colours and flavours of Greece in macaron form. I think it was successful but I have yet to serve these to actual Greeks - I will remedy that soon. ;)
The trickiest part in making these was getting the colour of the shells just the right shade of blue. I wanted it to be reminiscent the colour of the blue/green waters I've seen in photos of Greek beaches. For the filling I went with the classic flavours I've seen in other Greek desserts such as baklava. Enjoy!
For the macaron shells:
2/3 cup (75 gr) ground almonds
1 1/2 cup (150 gr) powdered sugar
3 large egg whites
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
18 drops blue food colouring
For the filling:
2 oz of cream cheese, softened
2 oz of Greek yogurt, strained overnight
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons fig preserves/jam
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch of ground clove
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
Prepare the macarons:
1. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites to a foam, gradually add the sugar, vanilla, food colouring until you obtain a glossy meringue. Do not over beat your meringue or it will be too dry.
2. Place the almonds and powdered sugar in a food processor and give them a good pulse until the nuts are finely ground. Sift the mixture and add it to the meringue, give it a quick fold to break some of the air and then fold the mass carefully until you obtain a batter that falls back on itself after counting to 10.
3. Give quick strokes at first to break the mass and slow down. The whole process should not take more than 50 strokes. Test a small amount on a plate: if the tops flattens on its own you are good to go. If there is a small beak, give the batter a couple of turns.
4. Fill a pastry bag with the batter and pipe small rounds (1.5 inches in diameter) onto parchment paper or silicone mats lined baking sheets. Sprinkle the tops of the macarons with the finely chopped walnuts. Preheat the oven to 350F. Let the macarons sit out for 30 minutes to an hour to harden their shells a bit and bake for 10-12 minutes, depending on their size. Let cool.
5. For the filling: Beat together butter, yogurt and cream cheese until smooth. Add the fig preserves, honey & spices, mix well. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until you get the desired consistency.
6. To assemble the macarons, pipe or spoon some of the filling in the center of one shell and top with another one.