Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Mac Attack #19 Ballpark Snacks - Toffee Popcorn Mini Macarons

This months Mac Attack is a great one, what could be more fun than Ballpark snack macs?

Hot Dogs, Popcorn, Peanuts, French Fries, Crackerjacks, Corn Dogs and Soft Drinks. No sophisticated and elegant flavours allowed, this month was all about junk food.  Snack macs with a ballpark twist, sweet and salty, creamy, crispy or ice cold the possibilities are rather exciting.


I have been to a ball game, hubby and I went to see the NFL in London last year (I think that counts). The game was fantastic but the snacks were terrible, lets just say at Wembley Stadium I had the worst hot dog I have ever tried in my life, I say tried because I chucked it after one bite. 

I'm convinced that this is us Brits. being quite frankly rubbish and in my head the ballpark snacks in the U.S. are utterly awesome and a big part of the experience and excitement of the day.  Needless to say I decided not to take inspiration from Wembley Stadium for my Mac Attack and instead decided to make my ballpark macs the ball game snacks I always dreamed of.

I finally decided on Toffee Popcorn Mini Macarons, sweet and salty, cute and bite size, perfect macarons for a ball game.


I considered adding ground toffee popcorn to the macaron batter, this would have been very brave, totally bad ass and awesome if it had worked but I had a very strong suspicion that it wouldn't.

 As it was with just a sprinkle of toffee popcorn on top, the toffee caused my macarons caramelised slightly on top and around the edges, so I imagine toffee popcorn in the batter would have been a disaster. 

 The slight caramelisation (although not strictly right for a macaron), really added to the toffee popcorn-ness of these macarons.  You could taste the toffee popcorn sprinkle brilliantly and when combined with the toffee filling, the added chew from the slightly caramelized pieds (feet) and their adorable miniature size, these really were very much like toffee popcorn.


The popcorn boxes just pulled it all together perfectly, I didn't buy them especially for this, I have had them cluttering up my kitchen for ages now and was really pleased to find something so fabulous to use them for.  I am obviously a trashy mac type of girl because I love both these and my Oreo Macarons from last month. Malteser Macarons coming up...

Toffee Popcorn Mini Macarons

100g (about 3) egg whites, room temperature
66g caster sugar
120g ground almonds
180g icing sugar
1tsp cocoa powder
30g toffee popcorn.

Line two baking trays with baking paper and set aside.

Place the toffee popcorn in a food processor and blitz to crumbs.

Sift together the almonds, icing sugar and cocoa powder into a large mixing bowl.

In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until half stiff, gradually add the caster sugar, beating until the egg whites become egg whites reach stiff, firm peaks stage. The mixture should be glossy.

Fold the beaten egg whites into the dry ingredients, incorporating gently with a rubber spatula.  Once fully incorporated, use your rubber spatula to press down the mixture, going back and forth to press out the oxygen.  The mixture will be smooth and fall in a ribbon from the spatula when ready, do not over mix.


Transfer the mixture to a piping bag fitted with a 0.5cm plain round piping tip and pipe 1-1.5cm rounds onto your prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle with your toffee popcorn crumbs over the piped macarons.


Preheat the oven to 160C.

Leave the trays out on the kitchen counter for around 30 minutes to set, when they feel hard to the touch they are ready to be baked.

Bake in the centre of your oven for around 5 minutes. Touch the top of a macaron and gently move your finger side to side. If there is no wobble they are ready.

Leave the macaron shells on their baking trays to cool before using a palette knife to carefully remove them.

Toffee Filling

50g light muscovado sugar
3 tbsp water
100ml double cream

Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and place over a gentle heat until the sugar has melted. Bring to a gentle boil and let it bubble away until you reach Soft-Ball Stage (around 5 minutes).

Remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the cream.  Return to a low heat and let the mixture gently bubble for a further 5 minutes or until thickened.

Transfer the mixture to a small bowl and place in the refrigerator for half an hour, whisking occasionally, until thick and pipe-able.

Marry up the macaron discs and pipe the toffee caramel onto the flat side of one macaron in each pair. Sandwich the macarons pairs together and serve on a pile of toffee popcorn.


Pop over and visit the lovely macaron people at Mac Tweets and feast your eyes on the fantastic macarons made by everyone each month. I love everyone's amazingly creative ideas and all the gloriously different recipes.


19 comments:

Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite said...

Gah! You took my idea! Great minds think alike, clearly! I actually have a different idea for how to make these so hopefully mine will work as well as yours did! Gorgeous!

How To Be Perfect said...

Oh no and I got in there early too, sorry hun. I bet yours will be amazing, I had a feeling this might be a popular idea. x

Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes said...

What a great idea! Love it! You are correct about our snacks, they are good, if you can afford the price of the tickets! So expensive!

Jamie said...

Oh my I want a box of these! Mmmm crackjack flavor? Gotta be a favorite and the bite-sized macs are fabulous and perfect. I'll go to THAT ballgame with you! Love it! Thanks for bringing them to the MacBall Game!

Dom at Belleau Kitchen said...

Divine work my friend. I think you're right about the British and fast food. We just don't do it well ( other than fish and chips) and the Americans care about it more than us! I still haven't succeeded with macaroons yet. Oh and BTW I got your message re those cupcakes. They tasted fine and rose to the occasion so no worries although the lemon curdled the mixture slightly xx

Butter Hearts Sugar said...

Trashy mac lovers unite! I love this idea, they sound wonderful and look so so cute I love the pics. Your post has me wondering what hot dog macs would taste, Gross! I look forward to malteaster macarons. :)

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Lora said...

These are just too cute! I love the styling as well.

Maria♥ said...

Your a genius! Toffee Popcorn Mini Macarons not only sound divine but look it!

Maria
x

cakeje van eigen deeg said...

I love these little macarons! I bet they tasted great ;) the toffee is so irresistable.

Butter Hearts Sugar said...

I wish I could remember what I said the first time, silly blogger! These are such a clever idea, I love that you've displayed them in a popcorn box.

Amrita said...

these are so cute! i love the popcorn box! i had a feeling many ideas would come down sprinkling popcorn over the top, but there are still many variations to try :)

Sandy at Ooh La Frou Frou said...

How adorable are these! Love macarons, and these are such a unique idea ... loving the salty/sweet thing right now! xo

RollerScrapper said...

Delightful! I love how you staged the photos!

Jill@MadAboutMacarons said...

They are absolutely stunning. Love the photos and these look so sweet and delicious, too. Brilliant!

Lisa said...

These are absolutely gorgeous and mouth-watering. I love the crumbled toffee popcorn on top, the toffee filling, and the caramelized feet are just awesome! I would buy tubs and and tubs of these at any game or anywhere in general! Amazing job :)

hicookery said...

The toffee and popcorn crumbs on top give your macarons a nice texture. I bet they taste good, too. I've got popcorn boxes stored away in my kitchen as well. Great that you got to use them for this yummy mac post!

shaz said...

Very cool idea! You're right, I put popcorn in my batter and it went a bit strange. Cheers from another Macattacker :)

RollerScrapper said...

You had me at caramelized