This month MacTweet Challange is Childhood Summer. Well during my childhood I have 365 or 366 days a year of summer. Even during the monsoon season,the temperature rarely goes below 20 C.
See, I am from a tropical island called Penang located in north of Malaysia. So I actually have no particular things that I'd do during 'summer' like kids would in 4 seasons countries.
I grew up following dad going to fish, making sand castle on the beach, eating out on the streets, going to night market with mom... simple life.
So I thought of making something that dedicated to where I spend most of my life in - my kaampung (homeland),Malaysia. A few days ago it was Malaysia's 53 Birthday, so I am using the national flower - hibiscus, as my inspiration. Well, the hibicus doesnt look like one but, anyhow that's the best I could do
I leave the macaron shells white to signify purity and innocence of childhood, red as symbol of love for my beloved far away homeland.
FOR THE MACARON SHELL
1 room temperatured egg white(39-40g)
50g icing sugar
30g ground almond
30g castor sugar
1/4 teaspoon red food colouring
1. Put ground almond, and icing sugar in a food processor or a small blender. Blend them finely.
2. Sift the blended mixture and set aside
3. With an electric beater, Beat the egg white, start from low speed and increase slowly to maximum speed. Beat until frothy (you will see lots of fine bubbles)
4. Now it's the time to add in the castor sugar, add half of the sugar, continue to beat in maximum speed for around 2 minutes, add in the other half, continue until you get very stiff peak.
5. Mix the dry ingredients into the egg whites. This process is called Macaronage. Start folding with a rubber spatula. Mix just roughly combine.
6. Scoop out a spoonful of macaron mixture into a small bowl, add in red colouring, fold till mix. Set aside
7. Continue to mix the white mixture until you obtain a smooth lava flow batter.
8. When you get smooth shiny mixture, stop folding, lift the mixture with spatula, if the mixture falls back slowly in the bowl means you're good to go. You could also check if the lines formed from the lifted mixture, they should slowly disappear in within 30 seconds. At this stage you're good to go. Do not over fold, it will be too liquid and becoming very hard to pipe.
if you're unsure, you could refer to my basic macaron recipe as a guide HERE
9. Pipe the macaron on a baking sheet over baking tray. Hit the bottom of the baking tray with your hand to flatted out the macarons slightly.
10. Using another piping bag with a small nozzle, pour in the red coloured mixture. Carefully draw 5 petals on the shells.
11. Tap the bottom of the baking tray so the red mixture sits into the white one.
12. Let your macarons sit for about 30minutes. This will depend on the humidity in your house and the day. Try touching the macaron softly, after 30mins. it should not stick to your hand.
13. Heat your oven to 150 C on the (heating on the top only). When the oven is ready, put your macaron at the very bottom shelf. Bake for 12 minutes, check them in the mid time of 6 minutes, the feets should already start forming. Turn the baking tray to the opposite direction to allow even baking. When the 6 mins is up, change the heating setting of your oven to Bottom only. Reduce heat to 130 C. This will help cooking the macaron and rise the feet more. Bake for another 6 8 minutes.
You can test if the macaron is cook, touch softly on the shell and when the macaron doesn't slide on the feet, it's cooked. if it's not add another 1 mins each time and check.
Bewared that white colour macarons turn 'brown' easily, if doubt the oven is too hot, reduce the heat and prolong the cooking time by minute.
(This is the method i found the best that works for me after few trial and error. I baked with heating the oven top and bottom and i had crack macarons. Having said that, every oven is slightly different than another, so please adjust accordingly)
14. Let the macaron cool down before removing them. You could wet your working area and slide the baking sheet on it to speed up the cooling process, but do not let it sit there too long, if not the macarons will become soggy. Other wise you can leave them cool at room temperature and remove them.
For the Rasberry Ganache and Dried Cherry Filling
1. 60g white chocolate
2. 20g of fresh / frozen raspberriess (if frozen defroze it before hand)
3. 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
4. about 6 dried cherry, cut into half.
1. In a small pot over low heat add in raspberries and lemonjuice, smash the raspberries as you stir, making a puree.
2. when you get the puree, place it in blender cup and mix it up with the blender ( to blend up the seeds)
3. Pass the raspberry mixture through a sift, to get smooth pure puree. Then put it back on the small pot and warm it slightly.
4. Add in white chocolate into the raspberry mixture, remove from heat. Stir till well combined and chocolate is completely melted.
5. Let cool in room temperature.
6. Fill up the macaron shell with ganache, top up with half dried cherry, then close with another macaron shell.
7. After finish piping all the macarons, pop them in an air tight container. Leave them in refrigerator overnight. You could keep the macarons up to 48 hours in the fridge. if not consumed, freeze them up. Because after 48 hours they will lose the texture.
8. Take them out of the fridge 20 mins prior eating.Enjoy!