Another day and another awesome macaron recipe.
These glorious little macarons are a bit of an amalgamation of recipes, they are however entirely inspired by one of Pierre Herme fabulous macaron recipes.
I have adapted Pierre Herme's recipe for the semi-dried cubes of apple, the salted butter caramel recipe is my own and the macaron shells themselves are made from a very standard French Meringue recipe.
You will need to make your semi-dried apple cubes the day before you make your macarons so a little planning is needed here. You can of course omit the apple altogether and make salted butter caramel macarons instead, they too are wonderful.
These Salted Butter Caramel & Apple Mini Macarons were the second batch of macarons I baked on my new double sided macaron mat and they came out beautifully. Second time around I made sure to leave enough room for the macarons to spread and consequently this batch came out perfectly uniform. I have also now tried both Italian and French Meringue macaron recipes on my new macaron mat and both have worked equally well.
The salted butter caramel I used for these macarons is quite possibly one of the most delicious things I have ever tasted, it is a huge favourite of mine. The little semi-dried apple cubes are a stroke of genius and I have plans to make up a batch for cupcake use. I hate mushy fruit in cakes!
Salted Butter Caramel & Apple Macarons
For the Semi-Dried Apple Cubes:
1 Granny Smiths Apple
1 tbsp lemon juice
1tbsp caster sugar
For the Macarons:
75g ground almonds
100g icing sugar
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 large egg whites
50g caster sugar
For the Caramel:
250ml double cream
200ml golden syrup
50ml double cream
50ml sour cream
pinch sea salt
85g butter, very soft
To Make the Semi-Dried Apple Cubes
The day before yo make your macarons, prepare the semi-dried apples.
Preheat the oven to 90C.
Peel and core the apple and cut it into small cubes, around 8mm in size. Sprinkle them immediately with lemon juice as you go along. Stir the cubes of apple into the sugar.
Spread the cubes of apple out onto a baking tray and place them in the oven to dry for around 1 hour. The cubes will look slightly dry. Store the apple cubes at room temperature until the following day.
To Make the Macarons:
Line two baking trays with parchment paper and set aside.
Place the ground almonds, icing sugar and cocoa powder into a food processor and blitz together. Sift the mixture into a large mixing bowl.
Place the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and whisk until holding soft peaks. Gradually add the caster sugar a little at a time, whisking continuously until you have a firm glossy meringue.
Using a rubber spatula, fold the almond mixture into the meringue mixture, one third at a time.
When all the ingredients are fully incorporated continue to cut and fold the mixture until it forms a shiny batter that falls from the spatula in a ribbon.
Transfer the macaron mixture to a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain piping tip. Pipe rounds onto the prepared baking sheets. Firmly rap the bottom of the tray against the counter top to remove any air bubbles. Leave the macarons to sit at room temperature for around 30 minutes, or until they form a skin.
Pre heat the oven to 160C.
Bake the macarons for 10-15 minutes depending on their size.
Allow the macarons shells to cool completely before carefully removing them from the baking paper.
To Make the Salted Butter Caramel:
Combine the cream and golden syrup in a small saucepan and place over a medium heat. Allow the caramel to boil for around 6 minutes or until it becomes think, gloopy and coats the back of a spoon.
Combine the second batch of cream, sour cream and salt in a small saucepan and heat gently.
Once the caramel is ready carefully add the warmed cream and stir until smooth.
Allow the caramel to cool and refrigerate until thick.
Place the very soft butter in a mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment for 5 minutes until very light. Gradually add the caramel, beating continuously until smooth.
Pair up your macarons and pipe a generous mound of salted butter caramel onto the flat side of half of your shells. Gently press a cube of semi-dried apple into the centre and then top with the remaining shells.
Refrigerate macarons to set.
Serve at room temperature.