Yes, I am still obsessed over macarons. Today I tried to make teddy bear and flower shaped macarons--big failures. My five pedal flowers came out with various sizes and shapes, and teddy bears all cracked in the middle. Can you imagine a split face teddy bear? It is every kid's worst nightmare, literally.
Among all the shapes I experienced today...I also tried flavoring my macaron shells for the first time! The result was not bad. At first I could barely taste the matcha, but the flavor develops after a couple of hours in the fridge.
I used the French meringue method described in my previous post. Instead of food coloring, I added matcha paste. The paste is made from 1 tablespoon of matcha powder and 1 tablespoon of boiling water. When egg white reaches semi-stiff peak, add the matcha powder in place of food coloring. Then finish whipping the egg white till you reach stiff peak. Or another silly test is turn the bowl upside down. The egg white should not fall. If you end up with a head full of green egg white...well remember to whip your egg white pass whichever state you were on.
To enhance the matcha flavor, I made matcha buttercream to complement the almond shells. This is an easy recipe from I <3 Macarons by Hisako Ogita. Buttercream recipe #2 on this book uses egg yolks instead of egg whites to make the buttercream. What a brilliant idea to use leftover egg yolks! I used to freeze my egg yolks in the fridge, but the temperature seems to cook the yolks in a way that a skin forms around the running egg yolk. Then I give up and just throw my egg yolks away--what a waste!
I normally just use two egg whites in my macarons and they make about two trays of cookies. Two yolks yield just the right amount to fill them up.
100 grams/ 7 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
50ml/ 50g/ 3 1/2 tablespoons milk
2 egg yolks
40g/ 1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon matcha powder
2 teaspoon boiled water
In a bowl, whip egg yolks and sugar till the yolks become pale. Heat milk in a saucepan till the side bubbles, remove from heat. While one hand is whipping the egg yolks, pour the hot milk into the eggs with the other hand. Pour everything back into the pot, don't stop whipping to prevent the milk from overheating the eggs. On medium heat, simmer mixture until you can leave a finger trail on the wooden spoon. Remove pot from heat and pour into a bowl. Whip the mixture till you get a custard-like consistency. Leave the mixer on and add 1/3 of butter. Add some more butter when the first batch of butter is incorporated. Mix in all the butter and whip the buttercream till smooth and shiny. Don't worry if the mixture looks grainy after you added in the butter.
Make matcha powder by mixing water and matcha powder together. Add paste into buttercream and whip together till all matcha paste is incorporated.
Buttercream can be stored in the fridge or freezer. Before using, leave out at room temperature till it softens. Or use right away on cupcakes, macarons, cakes...