Friday, 20 April 2012

Black Sesame and Cream Cheese Macarons

Did I tell you before that Macarons are VERY addictive? Ooooh yes they sure are!  My family can't get enough of the "Cookie Diva" and as soon as one batch is devoured (read that as gobbled up), they start asking for more.


I had bookmarked this post, from the very talented Mita, way back last year and the moment I came to know that this month's alphabet for AlphaBakes is "B", I knew I HAVE to make these beauties.


I was very intrigued by the use of Black Sesame in the recipe. The Sesame Seeds are widely used in Indian recipes to enhance the flavor and color of the dish. Naturally I was very excited to use them in macarons also.


Needless to say that the macarons turned out beautiful and as I m writing this post, the cookies are being gobbled up with fervor by my family :D. The sweet, salty and tangy Cream Cheese and Lime filling perfectly contrasted with the sweetness of the shells.


Black Sesame Macarons
Adapted minimally from Whats for Lunch Honey
Ingredients:

Refer to my first post on macarons, for better understanding of the ingredients ratio and technique of the process of macaron making
(will yield around 40 shells of 3 cm diameter)
45 grams Almond meal
15 grams + some for sprinkling on top, black sesame
80 grams icing sugar
40 grams caster sugar
50 grams egg whites, aged for 24 hrs on the counter top

Method:
Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius and line the baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
Process the almond meal, 15 grams  of black sesame seeds and icing sugar at high speed to achieve a fine powder. Sift (or whisk the powder by hand) to break up any lumps of powder.
In a clean bowl, beat the room-temperature egg whites until foamy and just at soft peaks. Gradually beat in the caster sugar, adding a little at a time.
Beat on medium speed for a number of minutes until you have a firm, glossy and compact meringue.
Sprinkle half of the dry mixture over the meringue and fold in with a spatula using a circular motion around the bowl and under the batter. Repeat with the remaining powder. You don't need to be gentle, but the goal is to incorporate the dry ingredients quickly to avoid overmixing.
The final batter should be the colour of pale ivory and smooth and thick but flowing. A ribbon of batter dropped from a spoon onto the top of the remaining batter should take about 30 seconds to disappear. 
Spoon the batter into a piping bag/gun with a 8-10 mm nozzle and pipe evenly onto the baking paper. Sprinkle with black sesame seeds. Mild peaks should settle back into the batter eventually. If they don't disappear, tap the tray repeatedly on a table until the peaks have largely disappeared. Usually the batter will spread a little and any bumps will disappear.
If you want, you can leave the piped batter to dry for anywhere between 20 mins and two hours. Drying the batter helps in feet forming. Place the tray in the oven. If you're using a conventional oven, cook as normal for two mins and then open the oven door about 2.5 cm and place a wooden spoon between the door and the jamb to permit hot air to escape for the rest of the cooking time.
At the 5 minute mark the shells should have lifted and developed 'feet'. At the 6-7 minute mark they should be starting to colour just slightly. Rotate the baking sheet if the colouring is uneven.
Remove from the oven and leave on the tray for a minute or two. Gently try to lift one of the outermost shells. A slight twisting motion or a peeling motion can help.
Once removed from the sheet, leave the shells to cool on a wire rack, face up.

Cream Cheese Filling
Ingredients:
75 grams cream cheese, room temperature
1 tablespoon icing sugar
1/2 teaspoon lime juice

Method:
Beat the cream cheese, icing sugar and lime juice until you get a smooth and spreadable consistency.

How to Assemble:
Fill the Cream Cheese in a plain tipped piping bag and pipe small dollops on one of the shells then gently cover with another. Do not press. Continue to do this until you have used up all of the filling and shells.
Leave the filled cookie to mature in the fridge for a day or two for the flavours of the fillings to mingle with the shell and to get the best results. Macarons are best eaten after a day or 2 of filling them.

I m sending this to the AlphaBakes challenge, hosted by the wonderful and very creative Ros from The More Than Occasional Baker and her equally talented friend Caroline from the Caroline Makes .

                                                 

And finally one announcement :D. Jasline of Food is my Life has nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award (my second :D). Thank you  Jasline for sharing this award with me.

                                                            

2 comments:

  1. I think you are now, officially, a Macaron expert! They look and sound so yum! www.LinsFood.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow such perfectly beautiful macarons! Love the flavours you've chosen and would really, really like to try one. Thanks for entering these to AlphaBakes :)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! Happy baking! :)

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