Baking Macarons from Duchess Bake Shop's Cookbook
If you didn't know already, I am in love with all things macarons. In fact, I even have a macaron pillow! So when Appetite by Random House asked me if I wanted to do a post on the republish of Duchess Bake Shop's cookbook, I of course chose the macaron recipe! A few days ago I headed to the Duchess Bake Shop Provisions to pick up some ingredients and decided to bake their Strawberry Macarons.
Like all macaron recipes, just a few ingredients are needed to make them. Here are some photos for how to make the Duchess Bake Shop macaron shells. This recipe is from page 26-29 of their cookbook.
|CW from top: almond meal, icing sugar egg white, albumen, granulated sugar, red powder colour
Duchess Bake Shop Macaron Recipe
Macaron Ingredients for Strawberry Macaron Shellsmakes 40-45 shells or 20 filled macarons
- 135g (1 1/4 cup + 3 Tbsp) almond flour (finely ground almonds)
- 195g (1 1/2 cups + 2 Tbsp) icing sugar
- 100g (about 3 large) egg whites (room temperature)
- 38g (3 Tbsp) granulated sugar
- 7g (2 tsp) egg white powder (egg albumen)
- 1/4 tsp red powder colour
- Sit together the almond flour and icing sugar together in a bowl. Discard any larger pieces that won't go through.
- Place the egg whites in a stand mixer bowl. Sift the granulated sugar, egg white powder, and powder colour onto the egg whites.
- Whip the egg whites on high until it becomes a stiff meringue (about 4 to 4/12 minutes). Make sure to whip until it is really stiff - like this!
- Pour the sifted almond flour mixture all at once over the meringue and using a spatula incorporate until just combined.
- Once it is just combined, transfer the batter to a shallow wide bowl. The next step is the macaronage. With the plastic bowl scraper, smear the batter along the sides of the bowl and scrape it back into the centre.
- Repeat the macaronage process until the batter is shiny and reaches the consistency of slow-flowing lava. How many times you need to do this is highly variable; it might be only a couple of passes or up to a half dozen. If the batter is moving faster than slow-flowing lava, it's been overmixed.
- Place the piping bag fitted with the piping tip inside a tall glass (I used a plastic cup) and fill the bag with batter.
- Hold the piping bag vertically with the tip 1/2 inch above the lined baking sheet. With even pressure while holding the piping bag steady pipe the macarons. Bang the baking sheets gently to eliminate air from the batter. Let the shells rest at room temperature until a skin forms. This should take 20-25 minutes. Test for readiness by touching the top of a shell with your finger. The batter should not feel sticky. While the shells are resting, preheat your oven to 350F (180C), positioning the oven rack in the middle of the oven.
note: I found that I had to bang my baking sheets on the counter in order for the tops to flatten out.
- Bake each sheet one at a time. Bake the shells for 8 minutes. Briefly open the oven door to let out steam, rotate the baking sheet, and bake for another 4 minutes. Once baked allow them to cool for 20 minutes.
note: I found that for my oven the macarons started to burn by the end of 12 minutes at 350F. I turned my oven down to 300F but followed the same baking times and procedure.
- To prepare the macarons for filling find pairs by matching their sizes. Line the pairs up on a tray. Take one of each pair, flip it over, and gently make an indent in the centre using your thumb.
Duchess Bake Shop Strawberry Buttercream Recipe
- 2 large egg whites
- 83g (1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp) sugar
- pinch of salt
- 226g (1 cup) unsalted butter, cubed (room temperature)
- 1 Tbsp wild strawberry compound *purchased from Duchess*
- Strawberry jam
- Heat egg whites, sugar, and salt over medium heat in a stand mixer bowl fitted over a double boiler. Whisk often, until the mixture reaches 55C (130F). Use a candy thermometer or an electric meat thermometer works just as well.
- Remove from heat and place the bowl back into the stand mixer. Whip the egg whites on high speed until the meringue is shiny and forms stiff peaks.
- Turn the mixer off and switch to the paddle attachment. While the mixer is on, slowly add the butter cubes. Mix until light and fluffy. Add in the 1 Tbsp of strawberry compound to make the strawberry buttercream.
- Prepare two piping bags. One with strawberry buttercream fitted with a small tip and the other with strawberry jam.
- Fill each indented macaron by piping a ring of strawberry buttercream around the outside edge of the macaron and then fill the centre with strawberry jam.
- Cover the macaron with its corresponding twin. The macarons can be kept in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
In following the Duchess Bake Shop Macaron recipe, I noticed that unlike other macaron recipes they do not mention processing the almond meal and icing sugar together. This is because Duchess uses a very finely processed almond meal. However, if you are like me and source your almond meal from Costco or Bulk Barn where the almond meal may not be as finely ground, you will need to process it further in a food processor to get smoother shells.
I typically advise people to wait 2 days from the time they finish piping their macarons and eating it to maximize the flavour. The Duchess recipe doesn't mention anything about waiting before eating the macarons. I noticed that by resting the Duchess macarons in the fridge for two days the flavours developed more and the buttercream had a more significant strawberry flavour compared to eating it right away.
The Duchess Bake Shop macaron recipe is great for the beginner macaron maker because there are detailed instructions in the recipe including pictures for each step. Giselle takes you through each step in in the macaron process and what to expect. The recipe also suggests for beginners to make a macaron template as it helps with keeping each macaron the right size.
There you have it, beautiful strawberry macarons with a dot of strawberry jam in the middle following the Macaron recipe from Duchess Bake Shop's cookbook; updated and republished by Appetite by Random House. The macarons are chewy as you bite into them and the strawberry compound in the buttercream is remnant of strawberry ice cream - delicious!
You can find this cookbook in stores or online at Indigo/Chapters, Amazon or if you are in Edmonton at Duchess Bake Shop's very own store.
Excerpted from Duchess Bake Shop: French-Inspired Recipes from our Bakery to Your Home by Giselle Courteau. Copyright © 2014 Duchess Bake Shop. Appetite by Random House® edition published 2017.Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.
Pictures in this blog post are all taken by Lillian Tse (Beyond Umami).