Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Hope everyone had or will have an awesome amount of food celebrations including eating turkey and having fall related food items! In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I wanted to thank each and every one of you for following along in my macaron journey and for continually encouraging me in my blogging journey. I don't always know who is reading what I write (so do leave me a comment when you can!), but just knowing that there is at least one person out there finding my recipes, experiences, or adventures worth reading is enough for me. So, thank YOU!
Today, I have put together into one post my Pumpkin Spice Macaron recipe. If you haven't read through all the equipment that you may need for making the most successful macarons possible, pop on over to my Macaron 101 post here.
Ingredients for Pumpkin Spice Macaron Shells
|Clockwise: aged egg whites, powdered sugar, almond meal, gel food colouring and albumen mixed with extra fine sugar.|
This will make about 30 macarons (approximately 60 shells depending on size).
- 100g Aged Egg Whites
- 225g Powdered Sugar
- 125g Almond Meal
- 5g Dehydrated Egg White Powder
- 28g Extra Fine Sugar (also known as berry sugar)
- Wilton Gel Food Colouring: 2 drops yellow, 1 drop red, 1 drop brown
- Split egg whites from egg yolks. Then, keep egg whites in an airtight container at room temperature for at least 2 days prior to use to make aged egg whites. This will help denature the structure of the egg whites making it easier to whip into meringue. Egg yolks can be saved and used for other baking needs (such as pasta, ice cream or buttercream).
- Keep Almond Meal in the fridge. An hour or two before use, let sit at room temperature. This will help prevent almond meal from going rancid.
- You can also make your own extra fine sugar by processing granulated sugar in a food processor until it is fine.
- To make a more orange colour for the macaron shells, I ended up putting in 2 drops of Wilton buttercup yellow, with 1 drop of red and 1 drop of brown gel food colouring to get the colour I wanted.
Directions for Homemade Pumpkin Spice Macaron Shells
- Measure all ingredients with a scale.
All ingredients are measured with a scale.
- Process almond meal and icing sugar in the food processor. Sift the blended almond meal and powdered sugar through a fine mesh. If there are any large lumps of almond meal, place it back through the food processor. meanwhile, mix together the albumen and extra fine sugar in a small bowl and set aside.
- Attach the whisk to the stand-up mixer and place 100g of egg whites into the mixer bowl. Whisk at a low speed.
- Beat egg whites at a low speed (2 on my Kitchen Aid Artisan). When egg whites are foamy (mousse-like) add in the dehydrated egg white powder (albumen) and granulated sugar mixture. Add in two drops of gel colouring (note: colour of shells will lighten after baking). Increase speed on Kitchen Aid to 4 and beat egg whites until "soft peaks" form (see picture below). To test if meringue is at the correct stage, do a check by stopping the mixer and tilting the whisk back to check the firmness of the peak. If a small peak forms on the end of the whisk, then you are done. Ensure that the meringue is not too stiff or foamy since that means you have gone too far. You have now made the "meringue" stage of the macaron. Take the bowl off the mixer and set on the counter beside the almond meal sugar mixture.
- Slowly incorporate the almond meal sugar mixture into the bowl of meringue, by mixing 2 tablespoons in a clockwise direction. For a visual demonstration of the mixing technique, see this video clip. Note: I found that splitting the mixing into six parts (with each part being approx. 2 tablespoons) and mixing a certain number of clockwise turns helps to achieve the best macaron shells. This step is probably one of the most crucial steps in making macarons; also known as the macaronage process.
Beyond Umami's Macaronage Mixing Guide
1st part = 16 turns
2nd part = 11 turns
3rd part = 14 turns
4th part = 11 turns
5th part = 11 turns
6th part = 23 turns
Incorporating almond meal sugar mixture to the meringue.
- Once the mixture feels and looks like magma (flows slowly) transfer it to a piping bag. Here is another short video clip showing the consistency of the macaron batter.
- Prepare the baking sheets by lining either silicon mats or parchment paper. Pipe each macaron shell by piping down into the try and then a quick twist to the right to finish piping a macaron shell (See video clip for demonstration of piping). Each tray should fit approximately 20-30 shells (for medium sized shells). Firmly rap the tray on the floor or counter to get rid of any air bubbles inside the shells. This is called "tamping". Use a toothpick to pop any air bubbles on the surface of the macaron shells. Poking the air bubbles is essential, otherwise you get volcanoes instead of smooth macaron shells (take a look at this video for further explanation). Allow the trays of macaron shells to rest for at least 60 minutes in a draft-free place until a skin forms on the top of the shell and it is dry to the touch (note: resting times can change depending on humidity).
Macaron shells piped and resting on thick baking trays
- Preheat the oven anywhere from 270-295 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature that you bake your macarons at may depend on what type of oven you have. Over the past while, I have found that baking at 280F for 18 minutes gives me the best possible macarons. No need to turn the trays anymore!
If baking in a convection oven, preheat your oven to 280F and bake for 12-15 minutes. They will be done when there is a firm crust on the top and the sought after ruffled edge; otherwise known as the pied (feet in French).
After the macaron shells are out of the oven, allow them to cool before you take them off the mat. Bake the next tray.
Pumpkin Spice Buttercream
- 80g (approx. 1/2 cup) superfine sugar
- 25g water
- 1 whole egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 170g soft butter (cut into cubes)
- 3 Tbsp pure pumpkin puree
- 2 Teaspoons pumpkin spice
- Superfine sugar can be made by taking granulated sugar and processing in a food processor.
- You can purchase pumpkin spice at the store or make your own. You probably have all the ingredients already to make your own!
Directions for Homemade Pumpkin Spice Buttercream
- Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small pot. Heat the sugar to 250F(120C) using a candy thermometer. If it boils, clean the sides of the pan with a damp pastry brush. Try not to mix the solution, but allow it to heat on its own.
- In another bowl or the bowl of your Kitchen Aid whisk the eggs and egg yolks until it lightens in colour.
- Once the hot sugar mixture reaches 250F pour immediately into the whisking egg mixture. Then, increase to a higher whisking speed. Continue whisking until the mixture has cooled down completely. It will start to look like a meringue and be glossy.
- Keep whisking the meringue until it has cooled. Meanwhile, cream then whisk the butter until it has thickened. Once the egg mixture-meringue has cooled (150F), add the whisked butter slowly into the meringue.
- Continue whisking until the buttercream is smooth. It may curdle slightly but this is okay. Keep whisking and the buttercream will come back together. Add in the pumpkin puree, while whisking. Add in the pumpkin spice. Take a look at this video for making the buttercream.
- Once the buttercream has come together, immediately transfer the pumpkin spice buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a nozzle (Here's a quick visual tutorial on piping bag basics). Match macaron shells by size, then pipe a small mound of pumpkin spice buttercream onto each half shell. Here is a video I made on instagram https://instagram.com/p/8ozJ-LBtmg/?taken-by=beyondumami).
- Top with the remaining shell and give a slight twist to secure the macaron together. It should look just like this: https://instagram.com/p/8o3sr4BtuG/?taken-by=beyondumami.