Friday readers got a chance to whip up some macarons at a masterclass. The result? Some delicious fun.
Readers joined us in our first masterclass on Mother’s Day to whip up these treats at Jumeirah Emirates Towers
Macarons – those pastel pastries that are the perfect balance of chewy and crisp – are one of the more challenging bakes. These freeze well – you can bake them ahead and freeze in a single layer, unfilled. The ganache also benefits from being made a day ahead. MACARONS 250g almond powder 300g icing sugar 200g egg whites 200g caster sugar A few drops of green food colouring GANACHE 30g invert sugar 50g pistachio paste 200g cream 500g Dulcey chocolate (or white chocolate) 30g butter TO MAKE THE MACARONS Mix almond powder with icing sugar in a blender until it becomes a fine powder. Grease three large baking trays and line with a silicone mat. Sift almonds and icing sugar together into a bowl, discarding any large pieces of almond. Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add caster sugar, beating until dissolved. Add food colouring, drop by drop, until a pale green colour is achieved. Fold in half the almond mixture until just combined. Fold in remaining mixture until combined and glossy. The mixture will break down a little. Spoon mixture into a large piping bag fitted with a 1cm nozzle. Pipe 4cm rounds of mixture on to trays, at least 3cm apart. Tap trays on your surface to remove bubbles. The macarons will spread a little. Rest for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 130°C/110°C fan-forced. Bake macarons, one tray at a time, for 18-20 minutes or until tops are firm. Cool on trays and transfer to a rack. TO MAKE THE GANACHE Heat invert sugar, pistachio paste and cream. Pour over chocolate and whisk until smooth. Cool to 35°C before adding butter, and stir in until smooth. Spread or pipe half a teaspoon of ganache over the flat sides of half the macarons. Sandwich with remaining macaroons and set aside until filling sets. Serve, and wait for the compliments to flow.
Jumeirah Emirates Towers’ cake artist, Indonesian chef Dhany Arbendwi Putra, shared baking secrets in the hotel’s pastry kitchen
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Chef Nadya Alibabaeva showed readers the perfect technique for folding sweet almonds into fluffy – and green! – egg whites