Millionaire's Shortbread Macarons
Since perfecting my French method, I've become a bit of a macaron maniac and one of my boyfriends favourite desserts is millionaires shortbread; so I thought, why not combine the two!
With a salted caramel ganache for the filling, these can be quite tricky and time consuming but once done, they're SO worth it!
Makes 15-20 Macarons
For the vanilla macarons:
- 100g ground almonds
- 100g Icing Sugar
- 70g egg whites
- 55g caster sugar
- 2 drops vanilla extract
For the chocolate macarons:
- Same as above but swap the vanilla extract for 30g of cocoa powder
- 1 crushed shortbread finger
- 80g caster sugar
- 2tbsp water
- 80g light muscovado sugar
- 50g unsalted butter
- 100ml double cream
- 1/2tsp flaked salt
- Preheat your oven to 150C/130C fan.
- Begin by blitzing the icing sugar and ground almonds in a food processor and then sieve this mixture to remove any large pieces of almond.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they begin to form soft peaks and then add the caster sugar in a tablespoon at a time until the peaks begin to get stronger and the egg white begins to look shiny. Add the vanilla extract in and whisk again for about 5 seconds until it's fully incorporated.
- Sieve in the almond and icing sugar mixture and then following a clockwise motion with a spatula, cut the mixture down the middle and fold until you are able to draw a FULL figure of 8 in the bowl before it dissolves back into the mixture; this means your macaron mixture is ready to pipe.
- Prepare your mixing bag but DO NOT cut a hole in the end just yet. Stick all of the mixture into the piping bag and leave to rest whilst you prepare your lined baking tray.
- Trimming roughly a cm off the end of your piping bag, pipe circles of approximately 11/2-2inches on your lined baking tray leaving a good inch between each one to allow for spreading room. Once there is no mixture left, bang the tray on your work surface a few times to remove any air bubbles and then leave them to rest for around half an hour until you can gently touch the tops of them without any mixture sticking to your finger.
- Once they have rested, pop them in your preheated oven for around 18-20 minutes. To test they are ready, try and remove one of them from the tray; if it comes away cleanly, they're ready to come out.
- Repeat steps 2-7 but when blitzing the icing sugar and almonds together, add in the cocoa powder and when piping the chocolate halves, add a sprinkle of crushed shortbread to the top of each one BEFORE baking.
Now it's time to make your salted caramel ganache!
- In a saucepan add the caster sugar and water and simmer over a low heat until the mixture begins to turn a golden/amber colour. Remove from the heat and add the muscavado sugar, butter and cream. Stir well and then return to the heat.
- Heat for another 3-5 minutes; stirring all the time to prevent it from catching until it reaches a creamy and slightly thicker consistency.
- Take off the heat, add the salt and then pour into a bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to firm up a bit in the fridge (approximately half an hour).
Time to get your Bob the Builder on...
- Once both the vanilla and chocolate halves are fully cooled, match the similar sizes with each other before getting your ganache out of the fridge as this it'll make it a lot easier when putting your macarons together.
- Now fill a piping bag with your ganache, put a good splodge in the middle of one half and then pop the other half on top giving it a decent squidge so the filling can be seen nicely.
- Make a cuppa, kick your legs up and enjoy this little moment of joy!
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