Pink Grapefruit and Rose Macarons
I did it. I totally did it. I made macarons with feet.
They aren't perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but they're mine. And I couldn't be prouder. My greatest accomplishments include having two children and writing a book. But this is definitely a close second.
What's the big deal, you say?
Macarons are notoriously finnicky, carefully crafted meringues that the French dreamed up just to screw with us.
I've tried to make them on multiple occasions and encountered nothing but failure. Some never rose, others cracked or emerged from the oven lopsided. None of them were photoworthy. Until now.
This macaron has a soft, chewy, rose infused sugar crust that melts on the tongue and yields to the full-bodied tartness of pink grapefruit marmalade. And the kicker? Just a sprinkle of pink peppercorns to add a warm spice that pairs perfectly with each bite of sweetness.
The ingredients for these meringues are deceptively simple.
A handful of almond meal, a little sugar and some egg whites. But the devil here is definitely in the details.
The consistency of macarons is key. And it's tough to get it right. I recommend this video and the companion recipe. It was one of the few that resulted in something resembling a macaron. Beth, apparently, has this approach dialed in.
I learned several things about myself through the process of making these macarons. None of them were exceptionally surprising. They were as follows:
1: I have zero patience. Like none at all.
2: I excel at frustrated melodrama. It's a gift.
3: I do not give up. Ever.
Eventually I ended up with macarons that could stand on their own and while my feet aren't as pretty as Beth's, they hold up the taste of this cookie like a boss.
Take a little tart with your sweet next time you pull up a chair for teatime. And follow the directions in this recipe precisely so you can avoid the tears. Until next time, friends, here's to a sweeter life, one bite at a time.
Pink Grapefruit and Rose Macarons
3 egg whites, room temperature
¼ cup white, granulated sugar
2 cups confectioners or powdered sugar
1 cup almond flour or meal
pinch of salt
¼ tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp. rosewater
1 drop pink food coloring
pink grapefruit marmalade
Preheat your oven to 300F degrees. It's important your oven not be too warm to avoid browning the tops of these meringues so double check the temperature with an over thermometer.
Beat egg whites until foamy in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment (1-2 minutes), then add salt, cream of tartar and white sugar. Beat on high for 8-10 mins.
Whip until they form a peak that stands upright. It shouldn't bend over and slowly fall when you lift some of the batter with the whisk for closer observation. Then add the rosewater. Beat an additional 30 seconds to one minute to fully incorporate. Sift almond flour, salt, cream of tartar, and powdered sugar carefully over a large bowl.
Fold flour/sugar mixture into the egg white mixture. Move slowly and carefully but with strong, deep turns of the spatula. You should aim for needing to fold this batter no more than 60-75 times to incorporate. Over mixing will kill your feet and prevent proper rise.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag. Stencil 1 1/2-2 inch rounds onto parchment paper lined cookie sheets and use them as a guide for piping uniform circles. Pipe out rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Tap the pan hard at least 2-3 times on the counter to release the air bubbles. This will prevent the tops of your macaroons from cracking.
Let these sit for 20-30 minutes or until you can no longer make smudges on the outside of the cookie by pressing with your finger. They need to have a firm, dry outer shell before being baked. Bake for 18-20 mins. Watch these carefully to avoid browning.
Mix food coloring with water and brush lightly on tops of warm macarons. Do not saturate- you just want them slightly damp. Grind pink peppercorns on the tops and sandwich with grapefruit marmalade. Marvel at a perfectly crafted macaron that's a pleasure on the eyes and the mouth.
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