Friday, 20 March 2015

Salted peanut macarons

When I was in NYC at the beginning of the year we tried a 'better nutter' from Bouchon bakery, which was a creamy salty sweet peanut filling sandwiched between two buttery crumbly peanut biscuits. The peanut filling was reminiscent of peanut butter but it was as light as air - without that cloying texture that makes you want to down several glasses of water. It struck me that this peanuty goodness would make an amazing macaron filling. So with some experimenting, I've developed a light, unsweetened peanut filling that is detailed below!

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The ingredients (makes approximately 30 3.5 cm shells)

For the shells you will need:

- 70 g ground almonds
- 60 g icing sugar
- 52 g egg whites (aged for at least 24 hours)
- 52 g caster sugar
- 1/8 tsp gel or powder food colouring
- 1 tsp cornflour

For the salted peanut filling you will need:

- 100 g double cream
- 100 g good quality peanut butter*
- A pinch of sea salt
- A tablespoon of roasted salted peanuts

*Try to get a good quality unsweetened peanut butter so you get less of the junk and more of the peanut

French meringue macaron recipe

For a detailed and illustrated step-by-step guide to making my macaron shells, please see my french meringue macaron recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 150C
  2. Grind the almonds in a food processor with the icing sugar and the cornflour
  3. Beat the egg whites with an electric whisk and gradually add in the caster sugar. Once all the sugar has been incorporated, continue to beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Then whisk in the powder or gel food colouring
  4. Fold in half of the almond mixture until fully incorporated then fold in the final half
  5. Transfer the mixture into a piping bag and pipe out onto trays lined with baking paper or silicone baking mats. Firmly tap the trays on the countertop to bring any air bubbles to the surface. Quickly pop these with a toothpick
  6. Allow the macarons to rest until they are dry to the touch
    Bake the macarons at 150C for about 20-30 minutes or until you can break one open and the interior is no longer wet

Salted peanut filling recipe

  1. Lightly whip the double cream until soft peaks form
  2. Fold in half the peanut butter with a generous pinch of salt until thoroughly combined
  3. Then fold in the second half of the peanut butter
  4. Add a little more salt if desired, I like to put quite a lot of salt in the filling-  so you can really taste the salt, I think the saltiness off the filling works nicely with the sweetness of the shells
  5. Pipe the filling into the shells and sprinkle over the finely chopped peanuts
  6. Sandwich the two macaron halves together and allow to mature for 24 hrs

I think these are best enjoyed with a lovely cup for tea

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