Monday, February 29, 2016

King Arthur Flour's Original Cake Pan Cake

This could be considered  a vintage recipe. It was created at King Arthur Flour. I decided to post a link to the recipe to give it full credit.
I look forward to making it. One of the appealing things about this recipe is that I have recently purchased  8" X 8" and  9" X 9" Square Pans that have perfectly straight sides. I really like them I have no idea why, but I do.

King Arthur Flour's Original Cake Pan Cake

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Hotel Waffle Batter

When we travel, we love Hotels that serve a Continental Breakfast that includes Waffles. For some reason they always come out perfect. We recently returned from a trip and had Waffles at our Hotel. When we returned home we ordered a Waffle Maker like the one the Hotel used. They make thick round Waffles similar to a Belgian Waffle. The Waffle Maker has a handle that flips over so the Waffles bake evenly on both sides and there's a timer to make sure they bake for the proper amount of time, resulting in the perfect Waffle.
Here's a recipe for Hotel Waffle Batter.


Delicious Waffles with Butter and Warm
Maple Syrup.


Hotel Waffle Batter:

6 Eggs
1/3 C Vegetable Oil
1 C Whole Milk
1 tsp Vanilla
1/3 C Granulated Sugar
2 C Cake Flower
1/2 tsp Salt
1 TBS Baking Powder

In a large mixing bowl:
Eggs
Oil
Milk
Vanilla
Sugar
Whisk well.

In another bowl, sift together:
Flour
Salt
Baking Powder
Whisk well.
Stir into the Wet Ingredients.
Whisk well until Creamy Smooth.

Bake according to the Waffle Maker's directions.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Thursday, February 25, 2016

Tex - Mex Scrambled Egg Bake

Here's another great Breakfast or Brunch recipe from Texas!

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9" X 13" Glass Baking Dish, sprayed with a vegetable cooking spray.

12 Eggs
16 oz. Sour Cream
1 C Chunky Pace Piquante Sauce
1 C  Fresh Grated Pepper Jack Cheese
1- 4 oz. can of Diced Green Chiles, undrained.
1 C Fresh Grated Cheddar Cheese.

In the Baking Dish, Layer in the following order:
Picante Sauce
Pepper Jack Cheese
Green Chiles
Eggs and Sour Cream whisked together.
Cheddar Cheese
Bake for 35 - 45 minutes.
Serve Hot!

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Apricot Glazed, Apple, Cinnamon Roll Pie with Homemade Whipped Cream

I have a couple of  Pie recipes using Cinnamon Rolls for the Crust. They're both very different recipes.
I've researched many similar recipes and here's another favorite that I've adapted for the Blog. You can either purchase the Crust or make your own.

Here are my favorite Apples to use in Pie:
They're listed in order of my preference. All of these will hold up well in a Pie Recipe.
#1- Jonagold
#2- Winesap
#3- Melrose
#4- Honeycrisp
#5- Braeburn

Apricot Glazed, Apple, Cinnamon Roll Pie

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
1 - 9" Pie Pan, I prefer Glass for this one so you can see the Cinnamon Roll Crust.

2 - 9" Pie Crusts. Make your own or purchase remade crusts.
1/2 C Brown Sugar
2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Vanilla
4 TBS Butter, melted + Additional for the Topping Apple Slices.
6 Baking Apples, divided.
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
3 1/2  TBS Water, divided.
1/2 C Bonne Maman Apricot Preserves

For this recipe you'll make a Crust, Filling, Topping and Glaze.

Crust:
Roll 2 Crusts together with a Rolling Pin.

In a Mixing Bowl:
Brown Sugar
Cinnamon
Vanilla
Butter
Mix well.
Spread evenly over the Crust.
Roll tightly into a log.
Cut into 1/2" slices.
Place them between 2 sheets of Parchment Paper and roll out to 1/4" thickness.
Press them into the Pie Pan on the bottom and up the sides (overlapping the rim).
Fold the ones along the rim in half and gently press the edge with a fork to create a decorative edge.
Refrigerate while you make the Filling.

Filling:
In a Saucepan on Medium Heat:
4 - Baking Apples, Peeled, Cored and Roughly Chopped.
Granulated Sugar
2 TBS Water
Cook until tender but not mushy.
Remove from heat and set aside.

Topping:
2- Baking Apples, Peeled, Cored and Thinly Sliced.

Add the Filling to the Pie Pan and spread out evenly.
Top it with the Sliced Apples.
Brush well with Additional Melted Butter.
Bake for 45 - 55 minutes.

Glaze:
In a Saucepan on Low Heat:
Apricot Preserves
1 1/2 TBS Water
Heat just until well combined and warm.
Brush evenly over the Sliced Apples.

Serve individual slices with Homemade Whipped Cream:


Homemade Whipped Cream:

1 C Heavy Cream
1 tsp Vanilla
1 TBS Confectioner's Sugar.
Whip the Cream in a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment.
Beat to Soft Peak.
Add:
Vanilla
Confectioner's Sugar
Beat to Stiff Peak.
Transfer to a Serving Bowl to serve.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Monday, February 22, 2016

The Hippy in the Kitchen's Summer Cocktail

Here's my latest Summer Cocktail Recipe.
You can also search my Terry Tini Cocktail recipe on the Blog.

The Hippy Cocktail:














You'll need:
A 1qt. Mason Jar
Ice Cold Water
Ice 


1 C Smirnoff Pineapple Vodka
1/3 C Triple Sec
1/3 C Malibu Coconut Rum
4 Scoops of Country Time Pink Lemonade Powder
Enough Water to fill the jar after all of the ingredients have been added and shaken.

Fill the Jar with:
Vodka
Triple Sec
Rum
Pink Lemonade Powder
Put the Lid on and shake well to dissolve the Lemonade.
Add Ice Cold Water to top it off and shake again.
Serve over Ice.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Sunday, February 21, 2016

Mini Pecan Sticky Buns from The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond

I thought I'd post the link to this recipe. I love Cinnamon Rolls but Anne makes the best! I've never made Sticky Buns but I like the concept of Minis. I will make these.

http://www.foodtv.com/4bhle

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Chocolate and Peanut Dump Cake

If you love Peanut Butter and Chocolate, this is an easy delicious dessert.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
1 - 9" X 13" Glass Casserole Dish


Chocolate and Peanut Dump Cake

1 - Boxed Chocolate Cake Mix (Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge)
1 Small Box of Chocolate Instant Pudding and Pie Filling. (Jell-O or Hershey's)
2 C Whole Milk
1 C Dark Chocolate Chips (Guittard Extra Dark or Hershey's Special Dark)
1 C Mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, roughly chopped.
1/2 C Chopped Peanuts

In a Large Mixing Bowl:
Cake Mix
Pudding and Pie Filling
Milk
Mix just to combine.
Fold in Reese's Cups and Peanuts.

Pour into the Casserole Dish.
Sprinkle evenly with Chocolate Chips.
Bake 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven to a rack, cool for 5 minutes.
Serve Warm.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Macarons 101, Instructions, Recipes and Photographs.


Macarons!
macaron (/ˌmɑːkəˈrɒn/ mah-kə-rohn;[1] French pronunciation: ​[makaʁɔ̃] is a French sweet meringue-based confection made with egg whites, icing sugar, granulated sugar, almond flour or ground almonds, and food coloring. The macaron is commonly filled with ganache, buttercream or jam filling sandwiched between two cookies. The name is derived from the Italian word macaronemaccarone or maccherone, the meringue.
The intricate confection is characterised by smooth, squared top, ruffled circumference (referred to as the "foot" or "pied"), and a flat base. It is mildly moist and easily melts in the mouth

Don't ever attempt to make Macarons on a Humid Day......... believe me this is from experience that I add this note!

At the end of this Post I've included the story and photographs from one of the classes I've taken at Sur la Table in Dallas, Texas. I took another class with them in Southlake, Texas.

This is a very lengthy and detailed post but if you're serious about making Macarons, read and study this and you can be very successful at making them.
I have many reference books, I've tasted Macarons throughout France, I've taken two classes and I've done the leg work to pass on to my Blog readers.

I'm obsessed with French Macarons. I have been traveling to France for over 45 years and I've visited every Bakery that sells them. We recently spent 6 weeks in Europe with 5 of them in France. We were in Paris two separate times and we made a point to shop for Macarons.
I knew they were considered difficult to make so I decided to take two classes to learn how to make them. I can honestly say that I feel confident in making incredible Macarons. I've been collecting recipes and I decided to post them all in one place on my Blog. I have to give credit to all of those that have inspired me to take on this project: Mad about Macarons : Jill Colonna, Pierre Hermé, Pierre Marcolini, Ladurée, Eric Kayser and of course, Sur La Table.

The Oven Temperature average will be 325 degrees and baked for 12 - 15 minutes. You can make adjustments according to your oven.
If you decide to add color to the cookie batter, only use a Gel Coloring. (Never Use Liquid Food Coloring)

This is the recommended Food Coloring.
It's the only one I use.
LorannGourmet
When you use it, add the color to the end of a Silicone Spatula
and then fold into the Batter or Meringue.
Don't try to add it directly to the Batter or Meringue.

Here are some of my personal notes from the classes I took:
They're very random and I wrote them down during the classes as I thought of them.
I create the Basic recipe without asking you to weigh ingredients like many Macaron recipes do. Once you get to be a pro, you can use recipes that weigh ingredients......... I don't ever weigh anything. So you don't have to!



Baked Macarons keep up to a week refrigerated.
Freeze up to 3 months.
Defrost 1 hour before serving.
150 grams of Egg Whites = 5 Eggs.
You can keep the Whites refrigerated in a jar up to 45 days, take out at least 2 hours before using them to bring to room temperature.
Refrigerate the finished Macarons at least 24 hours before easting, 36 hours for Chocolate Macarons.
Allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.
Almond Meal or other Nuts: Purchase the Flour or Grind your own. They don't have to be blanched.
You can use Pistachios or Hazelnuts.
Be sure to sift several times to remove any small pieces. The Flour has to be fine.
You don't have to slowly add granulated sugar to the Egg Whites. It can be tossed in all at once.
Only use a Gel Food Coloring.
After piping onto the baking mat or template, let them sit at least 30 minutes until the tops look dry.
You should be able to tap the top of the Macaron with your finger after they've dried, and not have any batter stick.
Sift Almond Meal several times without forcing it through the Sieve. Sift before weighing. Discard any residue.
Place Eggs in a bowl of warm water for a couple of minutes if you haven't brought them to room temperature.
When you Pipe the filling onto the cookies, you can pipe a ring around the edge leaving a well in the
center to add some Fruit Preserves, Chocolate Ganache or even some of my plain Pastry Cream. (Recipe included here)

(Just read these notes and decide what's important for you) I can hear you now..... "it's all important, isn't it?"

Macarons 101:

I started with a Basic French Macaron Recipe.
Once you've mastered this method and techniques, you can create any of the recipes that follow.
If I posted a filling recipe only, I refer you back to this Basic French Macaron Recipe for the cookie. Once you've Mastered the Basic Cookie Recipe you can play around with flavors and fillings that appeal to you. If you read and study the basic recipe you'll eventually be able to make any Macaron Recipe you want.



Basic French Macaron Recipe:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Line 2 Large Rimmed Sheet Pans with Parchment Paper drawn with 1 1/2" Circles spaced 1 " apart. Draw the circles with pencil and invert the paper so the drawing is on the back. You can eventually create a permanent template and use it to transfer the circles by tracing them onto the Parchment Paper.
1 - large Pastry Bag with a 0.4" plain round tip. Eventually you can use a larger tip for the batter and filling.
2/3 C Almond Flour
1 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar, sifted.
3 Large Egg Whites that have been sitting at room temperature for at least 3 days.
5 TBS Granulated Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla

In a large bowl, sift together:
Almond Flour
Confectioner's Sugar
Do this through a mesh sieve, Twice.

In a Stand Mixer, on Medium High speed, with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Whites
Whisk to frothy stage.

Gradually Add:
Granulated Sugar, 1 TBS at a time until completely incorporated. (I just toss it all in at once.)
Continue beating to stiff peak on High Speed.

Add:
Vanilla
Carefully Whisk until incorporated. Do not over mix at this stage.
Remove the bowl from the stand.

Add:
1/2 of the Flour mix to the Meringue,  carefully folding by hand with a Silicone Spatula.
Add remaining Mixture and repeat by folding gently until fully incorporated.
When it's completely incorporated continue folding from the center to the outside at least 15 times until the mixture slowly drips back into the bowl from the spatula. The batter cannot be too runny or the Macarons won't rise properly. (just remember that all of these steps are important to produce the perfect Macaron)

General Directions for Preparation:

Transfer the batter to the Piping Bag fitted with the proper tip. (I place the bag in a large drinking glass, fold down the bag and spoon the batter into it.) Use this technique for the Filling too.

Pipe the Circles onto the Parchment templates. Keep the bag low and straight up in the center of the circle. Gently squeeze and pull up. Let the bag do the work. Do not twist in a rotating motion. Jerk the back quickly at the end to release the batter from the bag.

When all of the Macarons have been piped, hold the Sheet Pan at both ends and hit it down onto a hard surface three times. This releases any air in the batter and smooths out the tops of the Macarons.

Set them aside to rest and dry for at least 30 minutes. They're ready to bake when the tops form a thin crust and you won't get any batter on your finger tip when you gently touch the tops. You may have to allow them to rest for as long as an hour, especially if it's a humid day. It' is worth the wait, believe me. I've attempted them on a humid day here in Texas and they won't turn out.

You can bake both pans at the same time if you have room in your oven. I often bake them separately and don't rotate the pans. If you do them both at the same time you'll have to rotate the pans half way through the baking time.

Bake for 12 - 15 minutes. Do not allow the tops to brown at all.
Remove the pans to a rack and allow to cool completely.
It also helps to refrigerate them for about 30 minutes before trying to release the from the paper.

At this stage you have to gently peel the paper away from the Macarons so you don't break them. The cookies may easily come away from the paper, but don't force them. If you're having difficulty. You can always gently remove them from the paper with a small offset metal spatula.

I transfer the halves to a new piece of Parchment Paper and turn half of them upside down.
Begin piping 1/2 of them with your choice of filling. I prefer to fill a piping bag and pipe on the filling, rather than spread it on with with an off set spatula. However some fillings require the spatula method and I've mentioned that in the recipes.

Gently press on the top half of the cookie.
I like to see some of the filling coming out of the edge of the Macarons.

Place them refrigerated in an air tight container and allow them to sit for at least 24 hours before serving. They get better as they sit. You can keep them refrigerated up to 1 week.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Let's continue with a Texas Macaron!

Pecan and Fig Macarons with Raspberry Cream Cheese and Fig Filling.

1 C Chopped Toasted Pecans (I toast whole pecans on the stove in a dry Cast Iron Skillet for about 10 minutes.
1 tsp Cinnamon
2 tsp Grated Lemon Zest
1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
a Dash of Salt
2 Large Egg Whites, room temperature.
1 3/4 C Confectioner's Sugar, that's been sifted.
3/4 C Finely Chopped Dried Black Mission Figs. (start with at least 8), set aside.

In a Food Processor:
Pecans
Cinnamon
Process until fine ground.
Add Lemon Zest
Process just until combined.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Cream of Tartar
Salt
Egg Whites
Beat until Foamy at medium speed.
Increase speed to high.
Beat to stiff peak.

Set aside 2 TBS of the Sugar in a small bowl.
Add remaining Sugar to the Mixer.
Beat on Low just until blended.

Remove bowl.
Gently fold in Pecan Mixture.
Add reserved Sugar to the Figs.
Toss to coat well.
Fold into the Meringue by hand.

Continue by referring to the instructions for the Basic French Macaron recipe above, to Pipe and Bake them..
Make the filling.

Raspberry Cream Cheese and Fig filling:

8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened to room temperature.
8 TBS Raspberry Jam. ( I only use Bonne Maman Raspberry Preserves)
A Jar of Bonne Maman Fig Preserves.

In a bowl with a Hand Mixer:
Cream Cheese
Raspberry Preserves
Beat until creamy smooth.
Refrigerate until completely cooled.

With an offset spatula, spread an equal amount of Raspberry filling onto half of the cookies.
Spread the other half of the cookies with an equal amount of Fig Jam.
Gently sandwich the two cookies together.
(You can also Pipe the filling onto the cookies.)

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Now, I have to post the recipe for The Hippy in the Kitchen's  "Tie Dyed" Macarons.

Here's what you'll need:
Either a Sheet Pan with a Silpat Mat without a template (free formed circles or lined with Parchment Paper that has Circle Templates on the underside)
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

2 Egg Whites, room temperature
5 TBS Granulated Sugar
1/2 C Almond Flour
1 C Confectioner's Sugar

In a bowl:
Granulated Sugar
Almond Flour
Whisk well.
Sift twice.

In a medium glass bowl with a hand mixer:
Egg Whites
Beat just until frothy.

Add:
Sugar
Beat on High until Stiff Peak and Glossy.
Fold the dry ingredients into the Meringue with a Silicone Spatula.
The Mixture should slowly drip off the Spatula.

Use a Piping Bag with a plain round tip to create the Tie Dyed Macaron batter.
You'll need a small paint brush (the one's you use for a Paint by Number Canvas)
Choose Gel Food Coloring that you like:
Red
Orange
Yellow
Green
Blue
Paint some very thin lines, overlapping some of the colors, inside the bag, starting at the tip end.
I doesn't take a lot of stripes. Just make sure there's some color around the entire bag.
Combinations of colors could be:
Red/Orange
Orange/Yellow
Blue/Green
Green/Yellow, etc!

Fill the bag with the Meringue Batter.
Pipe circles onto the Sheet Pan at least 1" apart.
Slap the Pan 3 times onto a flat surface to release air bubbles and create a smooth surface.
Set aside for at least 30 minutes.
They're ready to bake when none of the batter stays on the tip of your finger as you lightly tap it.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Do not allow them to brown.
Remove the Pan to a rack to cool for 10 minutes.
Transfer cookies to a rack to cool completely.

Make a recipe of my Pastry Cream (if I have some already made for other Macarons, I'll use it.)
My recipe is reposted at the end of this recipe.


You can also make a recipe of the following Honey Buttercream Filling:
In a saucepan off the heat:
1/4 C Granulated Sugar
2 Egg Yolks
Whisk just until creamy and very pale yellow.
The sugar should be completely dissolved.

Add:
3 1/2 TBS Whole Milk
Whisk well.
Place the pan on Low heat and continue whisking until it begins to thicken like a Custard.
Transfer to a Glass Bowl, continue whisking until it cools. This won't take long.

Put 7 TBS of very softened Butter in a small bowl and stir it to a creamy consistency.
Add it to the Custard and stir to incorporate well.

Add:
3 TBS Honey
Mix until incorporated.
Refrigerate at least 30 minutes, until firm.

Pipe the Bag again with a Rainbow of Gel Food Colors.
Fill the Bag with the Pastry Cream and Pipe onto 1/2 of the Macarons.
Gently press so the Cream comes out to the edge.


This is definitely a Best of the Best recipe!

My favorite Pastry Cream!

1 pint of Heavy Cream. (2 Cups)
1 pint of Vanilla Ice Cream (2 Cups), softened.
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 boxes of Instant French Vanilla Pudding
Combine ice cream and heavy cream in a mixer with a whisk attachment
Begin whipping on low speed.
Add vanilla and almond extract
Gradually add the pudding mix and combine well.
Refrigerate and use as needed.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Pumpkin Macarons.
For this recipe you can use my Pastry Cream Recipe or a Chocolate Ganache.
Both recipes available here.

7 oz. Confectioner's Sugar, divided
4 oz. Almond Flour
1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
4 Large Egg Whites, room temperature
3 1/2 oz Granulated Sugar
A Pinch of Cream of Tartar
Orange Gel Food Coloring

In a Food Processor:
Confectioner's Sugar
Almond Flour
Pumpkin Spice
Pulse until it's a fine powder.
Sift 4 times and set aside in a mixing bowl.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Whites
Whisk on Medium Speed to Soft Peak.

Add:
1/4 of the Granulated Sugar
Whisk just until combined, about 10 seconds.
Repeat with the remaining Sugar.

Add:
Cream of Tartar and Whisk just until combined.

Add:
Food Coloring to the end of a Silicone Spatula.
Whisk until combined.
Increase Speed and Whisk until Stiff Peak and Glossy.
Remove the Bowl.

Add:
Flour to the Meringue.
Fold in by hand with a Silicone Spatula.
Continue until the consistency is Glossy , Firm and drips slowly in a ribbon from the Spatula.
Transfer to a Pastry Bag.
Continue with the Basic French Macaron Recipe to Bake.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Dark Chocolate Ganache Filling:
4 oz. Bittersweet Chocolate, roughly chopped.
4 oz. Heavy Cream
1 TBS Brandy

In a Double Boiler over simmering water:
Chocolate
Stir with a Silicone Spatula until it's melted and creamy smooth.
Remove from heat.

Add:
Cream
Fold in by hand starting in the center of the bowl, stirring slowly in a rotation for about 1 minute.
It should be thick and shiny.

Add:
Brandy
Stir just until incorporated.
Allow to Cool by stirring every 10 minutes.
When completely cooled use an offset spatula and spread about 1 tsp between two Macarons.
Gently press together.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Cookie Dough Filling
Make a recipe of the Basic Macaron Cookies.

Filling:
8 TBS Butter, softened
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1/4 C Confectioner's Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
2 tsp Whole Milk
1/2 C Mini Chocolate Chips

In a Stand Mixer With a Paddle Attachment:
Butter
Brown Sugar
Beat for at least 2 minutes.

Add:
Vanilla
Milk
Beat just to combine.

Add:
Confectioner's Sugar
Beat until light and fluffy.
Remove the bowl from the mixer.
Fold in Chocolate Chips by hand.
Transfer to a Piping Bag with a Large Plain Round Piping Tip. Make sure it's large enough for the Mini Chocolate Chips.
Fill the cookies.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Lavender Honey Buttercream Macarons

Make a Basic Macaron Recipe for the Cookies, adding
1 tsp of Culinary Lavender to the batter.

Filling:
8 TBS Butter, room temperature.
1 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar
2 TBS Honey
1 - 2 TBS Heavy Cream
1 tsp Vanilla
1/4 tsp Lavender Essence

In a Stand Mixer with a Paddle Attachment:
Butter
Whip until Creamy and Smooth.
Turn the Mixer on Low and add all remaining ingredients.
Mix just to combine.
Increase speed to Medium and continue to Whip for 2 -3 minutes.
Spread Cookies with Filling using an offset spatula.
You can also Pipe the Filling onto the Cookies.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Apple Cider Buttercream Filling
Make a Basic Macaron Recipe for the Cookies.

1 C Sparkling Apple Cider
8 TBS Butter, room temperature
1/8 tsp Salt
1 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar

In a Saucepan on Medium Heat:
Apple Cider
Bring to a Boil.
Reduce to Simmer and cook for 12 - 15 minutes until it's reduced to about 2 TBS.
Seat aside to cool completely.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Butter
Salt
Whisk until creamy smooth for at least 2 minutes.
Turn off the machine .
Add:
Confectioner's Sugar.
Slowly Whisk on Low to create a Smooth and Creamy Buttercream.

Add:
Apple Cider
Whisk just until incorporated.

Spread the Macarons with an offset spatula.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Peanut Butter Buttercream Filling.
I would make a Chocolate  Hazelnut Macaron for this filling.

16 TBS Butter, softened
1 C Creamy Peanut Butter
3 C Confectioner's Sugar
1/2 C Heavy Cream
A Pinch of Salt

In a Stand Mixer with a Paddle Attachment:
Butter
Peanut Butter
Mix for at least 2 minutes.

Add:
Confectioner's Sugar
Beat until well combined.

Add:
Heavy Cream
Mix until combined.

Add:
Salt
Continue to beat on High Speed until it's Creamy Smooth.
Frost the Macarons with an offset spatula .

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Cherry Buttercream Filling:
Make a Basic Macaron Recipe for the Cookies.

Filling:
3 TBS Butter, softened
2 C Confectioner's Sugar, divided
1 TBS Kirsch Cherry Liqueur
1/2 tsp Almond Extract
1/2 C Finely diced Maraschino Cherries, patted dry on Paper Towels.

In a  Large Mixing Bowl with a Hand Mixer:
Butter
Beat for 30 seconds.

Add:
1 C Sugar
Kirsch
Almond Extract
Beat until well combined.
You can add an additional 2 tsp of Kirsch if necessary to create a spreadable consistency.
Fold in Cherries by hand.
Spread onto the Macarons with an offset spatula.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Chocolate Hazelnut Macarons (Cookie and Filling)

Cookie Batter:
1 1/4 C Confectioner's Sugar
1 C Finely Ground Hazelnuts
2 TBS Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
3 Egg Whites
1/2 tsp Vanilla
A Dash of Salt
1/4 C Granulated Sugar
3/4 C Nutella (Hazelnut Spread)

In a Mixing Bowl sift together:
Confectioner's Sugar
Hazelnuts
Cocoa Powder
Sift twice and set aside.

In a Stand Mixer  on medium speed with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Whites
Vanilla
Salt
Whisk just until Frothy.

Add:
Granulated Sugar, gradually.
Beat on High until Soft Peak.
Remove Bowl.

Fold in Hazelnut Mixture with a Silicone Spatula.
Continue with the instructions for the Basic French Macaron Recipe, to Bake the Cookies.

When the Macarons are done, spread one of the cookie halves with some of the Nutella and sandwich together with another cookie.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Cayenne/Chocolate Ganache Macarons
Cookies and Filling.


Cookies:
3/4 C Almond Flour
1 C Confectioner's Sugar
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
2 Large Egg Whites, room temperature.
A Pinch of Cream of Tartar
1/4 C Granulated Sugar

In a mixing bowl sift together:
Almond Flour
Confectioner's Sugar
Sift together 3 times.
Set Aside.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment on medium speed:
Egg Whites
Beat just until foamy.
Add:
Cream of Tartar
Sugar
Beat on high to form stiff peaks.
Remove the bowl.

Add:
Flour Mixture, gradually.
Fold in with a Silicone Spatula.
Add Cayenne and fold until incorporated.
Now is the time to Fold in any Color by adding a bit to the end of your Spatula and continue Folding until you reach the desired color.
The Batter should be fairly thick and gently fall in a ribbon, from the end of the Spatula.
Transfer batter to a Piping Bag.
Continue with the instructions for the Basic French Macaron Recipe above.

Make the Ganache Filling:

4.5 oz. of Chocolate, chopped.
1/2 C Heavy Cream

In a small bowl:
Chocolate
Set aside.

In a Saucepan on medium heat:
Cream
Heat until Hot, but not Boiling.
Pour over the Chocolate and allow to rest for a couple of minutes.
Mix until Creamy Smooth.
Cover with Plastic Wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
Spread 1 cookie half with the Ganache and sandwich it together with another half.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Raspberry Macarons, Cookie and Filling:


Cookie:
2 2/3 C + 1 TBS Almond Flour
2 C + 1 TBS Confectioner's Sugar
6 1/2 Egg Whites, room temperature
1 C + 1 TBS Granulated Sugar
Red Gel Food Coloring

A jar of Bonne Maman Raspberry Jam.

In a Mixing Bowl sift together:
Almond Four
Confectioner's Sugar
Sift 3 times.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment on Medium Speed:
Egg Whites
Beat until foamy.
Add:
Granulated Sugar
Beat until incorporated.
Increase Speed to High.
Beat until thick.
Add a small amount of Red Color and beat just until incorporated. Add additional until the right color is achieved.
Whisk just until combined.

Gently Fold Flour Mix into the Meringue.
Transfer Batter to a Piping Bag.
Continue with the instructions for the Basic French Macaron recipe above.

Filling:
Spread some of the Jam onto one of the halves and sandwich together with a second half. Gently press together so you see some of the Jam on the edge of the cookies.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Pistachio Macarons (one of my favorites)
Cookies and Filling.

This recipe calls for a Pistachio Paste. If you can't find it, you can make it. Simply process some Pistachio Nuts in a Food Processor until they are finely ground into crumbs. Gradually drizzle with water until a paste forms.

Cookies:
2/3 C Almond Flour
1/3 C Pistachio Flour
3/4 C Confectioner's Sugar
2 Large Egg Whites
1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
1/4 C Granulated Sugar
1/8 tsp Green Gel Food Coloring

Filling:
1/3 C Granulated Sugar
2 TBS Water
2 Egg Yolks
2 oz. Butter, softened
3 tsp Pistachio Paste

In a Mixing Bowl, sift together:
Almond Flour
Pistachio Flour
Confectioner's Sugar
Sift 3 times.
Set aside.

In a Stand Mixer on medium with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Whites
Whisk until foamy.

Add:
Cream of Tartar
Continue to Whisk.
Add Granulated Sugar.
Increase speed to High and beat to stiff peak.
Add Food Coloring to the end of a Silicone Spatula and add it to the Meringue.
Whisk on medium speed for 1 more minute.
Remove the bowl.
Fold in the Dry Ingredients with a Silicone Spatula.
The Batter should slowly drop in a Ribbon, from the Spatula.
Transfer to a Piping Bag.

Continue with the instructions for the Basic French Macaron recipe above.
Prepare the filling.

Filling:

In a Saucepan on Medium Heat:
Sugar
Water
Stir continuously until the Sugar is dissolved.
Bring to a boil and cook to 250 degrees.
Remove from heat.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Yolks
Whisk for 2 minutes.
With the mixer running on low, slowly drizzle the Hot Syrup into the Yolks.
Increase Speed to medium and continuously whisk until the mixture reaches 104 degrees.
The Meringue will be glossy. This is an Italian Meringue.

Add:
Butter, a TBS at a time and Whisk until incorporated.
Add:
Pistachio Paste until completely incorporated.
At this stage you can add some Green Food Coloring if you want the color to be more intense. This is Optional.
Continue to Whisk until Creamy Smooth.

Transfer the Filling to a Pastry Bag and pipe it onto one half of a Macaron and top with another half.
Gently press together.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Christmas Macarons with Peppermint Filling and Crushed Peppermint Candy Cane Garnish.

Make the Macaron Cookies according to the Basic French Macaron Recipe above.

Filling:
2 Egg Whites
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
12 TBS Butter,  Cut into TBS pieces, softened.
1/8 tsp Peppermint Oil
Crushed Candy Canes for Garnish.

In the Metal bowl of a Stand Mixer:
Egg Whites
Sugar
Whisk by hand until incorporated.
Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk continuously until the Sugar is completely dissolved.
There shouldn't be any sugar granules when you rub the mixture between your thumb and forefinger.

Place the bowl back on the Mixer with the Whisk Attachment.
Beat until the Meringue is stiff peak. Whisk for 10 minutes.

Remove the Whisk and replace with a Paddle Attachment.
Begin adding Butter, 1 TBS at a time, on medium speed.
Allow each addition to incorporate before adding the next TBS.
Increase speed to high and mix until it becomes creamy smooth.
Don't stop until it has the texture of a Buttercream.
Add:
Peppermint Oil
Beat on low just until incorporated.
Transfer the Filling to a Piping Bag, Pipe a bit of filling onto 1 half of each Macaron.
Sandwich together with another Macaron Half and gently press together. You should see some of the filling coming out.
At this stage, roll the exposed filling in the crushed Candy Canes.

Transfer to a Christmas serving Platter.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Cherry Buttercream Filling

Make a Basic French Macaron Recipe but add a bit of Red Gel Coloring to the cookie batter to get a nice red cookie color. You could make them Pink too.

Cherry Buttercream Filling:

3 TBS Butter, room temperature
2 C Confectioner's Sugar, divided
1 TBS Kirsch Cherry Liqueur
1/2 tsp Almond Extract
1/2 C Finely diced Maraschino Cherries, dried on Paper Towels.

In a Large Mixing Bowl with a hand mixer:
Butter
Beat for 30 seconds.

Add:
1 C Sugar
Kirsch
Almond Extract
Beat until well combined.

Add:
Remaining Sugar
Mix until well combined.

You can add an additional 2 tsp of Kirsch to create a spreadable consistency if necessary.
Fold in Cherries by hand.

Spread the filling onto the cookies with an off set spatula.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Here's a twist on the traditional French Macaron. I've crossed it with a bit of Texas seasoning. I decided to call it a Texas Christmas Macaron. There are so many options you could add to this. I would finely dice some Roasted Hatch Chiles and add it to the batter or sprinkle it on the top just prior to baking them. You could also add red coloring to the batter. I add red to half of the batter and green to the other half and put the cookies together with 1 of each of the colors. They're a great addition to the Christmas Cookie presentation when they're red and green.
There's also a variety of fillings that you could make. I have an incredible recipe for Jalapeño Jelly and I pipe the Chocolate Ganache around the perimeter of the bottom cookie with some Jalapeño Jelly piped in the center.
You can be creative and add a variety of combinations. Once you get past the fear of making Macarons, the variations are endless.
I've tried to write the recipe so anyone trying these for the first time, can make them!
The more you make them, the more you'll be familiar with the technique and bake some really delicious Macarons.








Texas Christmas Macarons

Here's what you'll need:
Sheet Pans with Parchment Paper Macaron Templates drawn on them. If you're familiar with the process then you know that you put the template on the Sheet Pan. The circles should be 1 1/4" in diameter. Cover it with a plain piece of Parchment. Pipe the batter and then slide the template paper out.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

3/4 C Almond Flour ( I use King Arthur)
1 C Confectioner's Sugar
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
2 Large Egg Whites, room temperature.
1/4 C Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
A Pinch of Cream of Tartar

Sift the Almond Flour and the Confectioner's Sugar together 4 times on to a large piece of Parchment Paper and set aside. Discard any pieces left in the Sieve or Sifter.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg Whites
Whisk on medium speed to Soft Peak.
Add:
1/4 of the Granulated Sugar
Whisk for 10 seconds.
Repeat with the remaining Granulated Sugar, adding it gradually.
Add:
Cream of Tartar, scrape down the sides of the bowl. (At this time you would add Food Coloring if you choose to add color to the Macarons.)
Increase speed to High.
Whisk until Stiff, Firm, Glossy Peaks form.

Sift the Flour mixture over the Meringue.
Fold it in with a large Silicone Spatula until completely combined, smooth and shiny.

The Batter should be fairly firm, glossy and drop slow from the Spatula when held over the bowl.

Spoon the batter into a Pastry Bag that's been fitted with a #12 tip. I place it in a drinking glass and fold the top over the glass.

Pipe the Macaron Batter onto the templates.
Slam the Sheet Pan onto a flat work surface to release any trapped air.
Allow the pans to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
They should form a thin crust and should not stick to your fingers when lightly touched.

Bake the Macarons 1 Sheet Pan at a time.
Bake 12 to 15 minutes.
Depending on your oven, you may have to rotate the pans half way through baking. If you have new ovens that won't be necessary.
Remove the Pan and slide the Paper with the Macarons onto a flat surface to cool.
When they are completely cooled, begin pulling the paper away from the cookies and don't try to pull the cookie away from the paper.

Prepare the Chocolate Ganache Filling.

4.5 oz. Chocolate, chopped
1/2 C Heavy Cream

Place Chocolate in a small mixing bowl.

In a Saucepan on medium high heat:
Heavy Cream
Heat until just before boiling. Do not allow to boil.
Pour over the Chocolate and whisk until creamy smooth.
Refrigerate just to reach a consistency to easily spread.
Transfer to a piping bag with a #12 tip and pipe one half of the cookies with the Ganache, top with another half.
See the beginning of the post for options with Jalapeño Jelly.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Mexican Chocolate Filling.

For this filling, make the Macaron Cookie recipe above: Chocolate Hazelnut Macarons.
You can substitute Almond Flour for the Hazelnut Flour if you prefer but I like the flavor of Hazelnut with Cinnamon and Cayenne Pepper.

Here's a list of of Chocolate that I love:
My favorite is Taza, it comes in a variety of flavors that could be used in this filling. It's a great Mexican Chocolate. I pair it with Hatch Chiles in Sweet Recipes. If you can't find it I recommend the following:

Ghirardelli Intense Dark
Godiva Dark
Lindt Noir Intense
Valrhona Guanaja Grué.

Here's the recipe for the Filling:
4 oz. of Good Dark Chocolate, roughly chopped.
1/4 C Heavy Cream
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
A Pinch or Two of Cayenne Pepper.

Put the Chocolate in a glass bowl.
Bring the Cream to a Simmer, do not boil.
Pour the Simmering Cream over the Chocolate.
Stir to combine.
Whisk well until creamy smooth.
Fold in Cinnamon and Cayenne Pepper.
Spread onto Macarons with an off set spatula.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Lemon or Lime Curd:
I was going to post a recipe for homemade Lemon Cream Filling and then I realized that you can simply purchase a good Lemon Curd or Lime Curd to use as a filling.
But then I realized that some people prefer to make a homemade Lemon Filling so......... here's the recipe.
You can make this with Lemon or Lime Zest and Juice.

Lemon Cream Filling
3/4 C Granulated Sugar
Zest of 1 Lemon or Lime
2 tsp Corn Starch
3 Eggs, separated.
16 TBS Butter, cut into TBS pieces, room temperature.

In a Large Mixing Bowl:
Sugar
Zest
Mix well.

Add:
Corn Starch
Whisk Well

Add:
Egg Yolks, one at a time until incorporated.

Add:
Lemon or Lime Juice
Whisk well.
Pour into a Saucepan on Low Heat
Cook, stirring constantly with a Silicone Spatula until it thickens.
Remove from heat and set aside to cool for at least 10 minutes.

Transfer to a Food Processor.
Gradually add Butter, 1 TBS at a time until Creamy Smooth.
Transfer to a Bowl, cover with Plastic Wrap and refrigerate at least 12 hours until firm enough to Pipe.
Transfer to a Piping Bag and fill the Macarons according to the Basic Recipe.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Raspberry Rose Buttercream Filling

2 Large Egg Whites, room temperature.
5 TBS Granulated Sugar
1/4 tsp Salt
10 TBS Butter, cut into TBS pieces, room temperature.
1/4 tsp Rose Water
Bonne Maman Raspberry Preserves



Strawberry Rose Filling.

For this filling make the Macarons from the basic recipe. Add a bit of Red Gel Food Coloring to make the Macaron batter Pink.

1 Egg White
1/3 C Granulated Sugar
6 TBS Butter, cut into TBS slices., softened.
3 large Fresh Strawberries, finely chopped.
6 Drops of Rosewater
Bonne Maman Strawberry Preserves

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk Attachment:
Egg White
Sugar
Whisk well.
Place the bowl over a Saucepan of simmering water.
Whisk constantly, by hand, for at least 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and return to the Mixer.
Whip on high speed until the sides of the bowl are completely cooled.

Add:
Butter, one piece at a time until completely incorporated and thick.
Add:
Strawberries and Rosewater.
Continue to whip on high speed until smooth.

Transfer to a Piping Bag with a small plain tip.
Pipe around the edge of the cookies leaving a well in the center to add a dollop of Strawberry Preserves.
Top with another Macaron and gently press.
I like to see some of the filling around the edge of the Macaron.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Orange and White Chocolate Cream Filling

4 TBS Orange Blossom Water, divided.
4 1/2 tsp Corn Starch
2/3 C Heavy Cream
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
3 1/2 oz. White Chocolate, finely chopped.
7 1/2 TBS Butter
Green Gel Food Coloring (LorannGourmet)

In a medium glass mixing bowl:
3 TBS Orange Blossom Water
Corn Starch
Whisk well.

In a Saucepan on Low Heat:
Cream Sugar
Heat just to Simmering.
Immediately Whisk this into the Cornstarch Mixture.
Return it to the Saucepan.
Continue Whisking on Low Heat for about 30 seconds, just until it's thick and smooth.
Pour it back into the bowl.

Add:
Chocolate, a little at a time, stirring with a Silicone Spatula just until mixed well.
Transfer to a Food Processor and Pulse until it cools a bit.
Add:
Butter
Remaining Orange Blossom Water
Food Coloring
Continue processing until creamy smooth.
Transfer to a glass bowl.
Place a piece of Plastic Wrap directly onto the surface of the filling and refrigerate until it's
firm enough to Pipe.
Transfer to a Piping bag and fill the Macarons as instructed in the Basic Recipe.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


I thought I'd add this to the Blog.
It's the best and easiest pastry cream I've ever made.

It can be used for:
Cream Puffs
Icing the center of a layered cake
Strawberry Shortcake
Aebelskiver filling
Trifle
Eclairs
Pastry Cream Crepe Cake
Macaron Filling

This is definitely a Best of the Best recipe!

My favorite Pastry Cream!

1 pint of Heavy Cream. (2 Cups)
1 pint of Vanilla Ice Cream (2 Cups), softened.
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 boxes of Instant French Vanilla Pudding
Combine ice cream and heavy cream in a mixer with a whisk attachment
Begin whipping on low speed.
Add vanilla and almond extract
Gradually add the pudding mix and combine well.
Refrigerate and use as needed.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Cassis Cream Cheese Filling:
4 oz. Cream Cheese, softened.
5 oz. Butter, softened.
1 TBS Creme de Cassis Liqueur
7 - 8 drops of Purple Food Coloring or Purple Gel Food Coloring.
1/8 tsp Salt
2 1/2 - 3 C Confectioner's Sugar

In a Stand Mixer with a Paddle Attachment / Medium Speed:
Cream Cheese
Butter
Beat until Creamy Smooth (3 minutes)

Add: On Low Speed:
Liqueur
Food Coloring
Salt
Mix for about 3 seconds. Just to combine.

Add, on Low Speed:
2 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar, Slowly.
Mix for only 30 seconds.
If it's too soft to hold it's shape, add additional Confectioner's Sugar, 1 TBS at a time until it has the consistency to be able to pipe it.
Transfer to a Pastry Bag to fill the Macarons.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Yesterday, 10/29/2014, I took a 3 hour class with our friend Jill, to learn how to make French Macarons. It was so much fun and so educational. I've always wanted to make them myself but I had heard so many stories about how difficult they are. I'd never attempted to make them but we certainly eat plenty of them while traveling in France.
They are colorful and very tasty. The combinations of different flavored cookies and different flavored fillings are endless. I left the class feeling very confident that I can successfully make them at home.
Since writing this Post, I've taken another class at Sur la Table.

We made three different flavors:

Pumpkin with Salted Caramel Buttercream
Spiced with Apple Cider Buttercream
Hazelnut with Dark Chocolate Ganache.
They were amazing.

I don't think many people really make them so I won't post any recipes on the blog. I just wanted to share the experience with pictures.
They're not in any order. I captioned some of them.
It's all in the technique to produce a nice Macaron.

There was a Hippy in the Classroom today!
Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Sifting, sifting and more sifting, the first important technique.
Flour was sifted separately. If using Almond Meal, the residue was removed.
 The Confectioner's Sugar was also sifted separately.
All of the ingredients were placed in a bowl together, and in this
picture , they're sifted together for the last time.
It's sifted onto Parchment Paper so it's easy to add to
a bowl, to be folded together with the Meringue. 

The piping bags are filled with the tip on, and the end of the bag was not
cut until the bag was full.

It's all about the technique to get them piped perfectly onto the parchment circles.

The chef demonstrating the technique of piping the batter,

This is our tray!
We were very pleased with the results.



The batter was weighed so we could share it equally with the other
team in the class.

This was our second tray. We each piped half of them on the sheet pan.
I believe these are the Spiced Macarons.


This is our tray of the Hazelnut Macarons.

Preparing the Dark Chocolate Ganache filling for the Hazelnut Macarons.

Brandy was added to the Ganache.



Salted Caramel for the Buttercream filling in the Pumpkin Macarons.

This is our tray of Pumpkin with Salted Caramel Buttercream filling.
We thought they look pretty good!



This is the food coloring added to the Hazelnut Meringue.


The technique for getting the cookie batter to the perfect consistency.

Getting ready to fold the Flour and the Meringue together for the cookie batter.

The batter ingredients have to be weighed properly.






After they're baked and cooled a bit, we refrigerated them.
This makes them easier to release from the Parchment Paper.
This photograph shows the technique of releasing them by
pulling the paper away from the cookie, rather than trying to pull
the cookie from the paper.
It worked!


I realize that this may seem overwhelming, but the class was so interesting.
I knew that if I ever wanted to make really nice Macarons, I would have to take a class.
Our chef was very talented and patient.
We all felt that we sucessfully accomplished what we came to learn.


Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!