Green tea (Matcha) and white chocolate ganache macarons
After my first batch of successful caramel fleur de sel macarons, I promised to make green tea macarons, and here they are! Soy loves green tea desserts, but she can be quite picky about them. She doesn’t like her green tea desserts to be too milky, so I was initially unsure about using white chocolate in my ganache. Unfortunately, a buttercream filling would have been worse in my effort to avoid making a filling that is too milky or creamy, so I ventured into making these green tea macarons with some trepidation. First, I scoured the web to get a recipe for green tea macarons that I could follow from start to end, but didn’t find any that I was completely happy with. To add to my nervousness, I then decided to use Baroque’s base recipe that I was comfortable with, and trust my instincts and taste to create a green tea macaron. I have admitted many times that my cooking skills are dismal. To me, the mark of a really good cook is the ability to cook based on whatever ingredients are available, and being able to create on the go. Soy does this brilliantly, and I am her biggest fan. The skills required for baking and for a pastry chef, I think, is the complete opposite- being precise and technical, and following a recipe closely. That, I am very good at! So these macarons definitely brought me out of my comfort zone and I was crossing all my fingers and toes that it would not just be an absolute flop.
White chocolate hardly makes an appearance in our house- Soy is a dark chocolate eater, and I like dark and milk. So opening the package to reveal a creamy white block was a different experience. For these macarons, I used natural matcha powder. Matcha powder is actually finely ground green tea leaves, and packs punch of flavour (and antioxidants)! For the ganache, I followed the proportions of chocolate, cream and butter, and then added matcha powder to taste (don’t worry, I made sure I measured how much I used). I did use a substantial amount, because I wanted to make sure to dull the creaminess of the white chocolate, for Soy’s sake, so if you want a more delicate flavour, use less matcha powder. Be careful also not to overdo the matcha powder, because too much can result in a bitter aftertaste.
I am also happy to report that my piping skills are improving! It was slightly easier this time to match my macaron shells after they were baked, because I was able to get more shells of the same size.
Remember in my last macaron post I included a photo of what you do not want your piped shells to look like? Well, this is how you do want them to look. After piping, you need to leave the shells for about 15 min to let the shells form a slight crust, before popping them into the oven. They should be relatively flat and even like this. You don’t want to see domes or peaks, because that means the mixture is too tough.
If you want your macaron shells to retain their pale green colour, make sure you don’t leave them in the oven for too long, or they will brown. If you have hot spots in your oven like I do, then it can’t be helped. The macaron shells around the edges of the tray were a touch browner than I liked.
It will take a lot of willpower, and perhaps a lock on your fridge, but these macarons really need to be rested in the fridge for at least 24 hours for the matcha flavour to develop. Of course I couldn’t help myself, and had a taste after thy were in the fridge for a few hours. I found that they still had a slight bitter aftertaste from the matcha, and the macaron shells hadn’t rehydrated, and so were crunchy rather than chewy. I know this will be very very difficult, but I found the flavour of the macarons were best after 2 days. “TWO whole days?!” I can hear you exclaim… but, trust me, my whole household agreed that the change in flavour was remarkable. The macaron shells had just the right crunch before your teeth sunk into them, and the ganache was smooth and delicate without any bitterness. Best of all, Soy loved them! I also brought along some of these delicious morsels to a friend’s dinner party, and everyone loved them with their tea and coffee.
Now, I am already thinking about what flavour macaron I should play with next! Tell me, what is your ultimate macaron flavour that you wish you could have?
Green Tea and White Chocolate Ganache Macarons
adapted from Baroque Bistro Patisserie
GREEN TEA AND WHITE CHOCOLATE GANACHE FILLING
400g Fresh Cream
400g chocolate (White couverture)
20g matcha powder
GREEN TEA MACARON SHELL
600g sifted TPT (300g Almond meal with 300g icing sugar)
10g matcha powder
120g egg whites
300g Caster sugar
120g egg whites
Step 1. MAKING YOUR FILLING:
Chop your chocolate to a very fine (grated) consistency.
Chop your butter into small cubes.
Commence boiling the cream.
Pour ¾ of the boiled cream into the grated chocolate and let sit for a few minutes to commence melting the chocolate.
Commence mixing with a spatula in a slow circular motion taking care not to incorporate any air.
Once you have a shiny and homogenous mixture, pour the remaining cream over the chocolate and repeat the mixing process. Check the temperature of the chocolate (not more than 55°C).
Add the butter and mix until the butter has completely absorbed into the chocolate.
Cover your ganache with clingfilm and leave in the fridge to set.
Step 2. MAKING YOUR MERINGUE SHELLS:
Sift the matcha powder with the TPT.
Mix the TPT with the egg whites, mixing vigorously until you have a smooth paste.
Mix the caster sugar, water and colour, commence cooking.
Place the aged egg whites in a Kitchenaid mixer with the whisk attachment.
Once the sugar has reached 115°C commence whipping your egg whites until they reach ‘soft peak’ consistency.
When the sugar reaches 118°C remove from the stove and pour slowly on the still mixing egg whites.
Turn the speed to maximum for around 1min and return to medium for another 2min and then let the meringue cool to around 50°C whilst mixing slowly.
Using a spatula commence incorporating the meringue into the TPT and egg white batter. Work the mix gently from the sides to the middle until you reach a homogenous, shiny texture.
Step 3. PIPING AND COOKING YOUR MERINGUE SHELLS:
Using a plastic piping bag with no. 11 tip, pipe the shells onto a baking sheet according to the size template.
You should stop piping before the mix reaches the outside edge of the template.
Tap the tray gently on the side of the bench until the macaron reaches the size of the template.
Remove the template from beneath your baking sheet.
Leave the macarons outside at room temperature for 15 min or until they have formed a skin and are dry to touch.
Cook the macarons according to the cooking guide for your type of oven
Once cooked, slide the paper off the tray and let the shells cool (preferably on a wire rack)
Step 4. ASSEMBLING YOUR MACARONS
Pull the shells from the paper gently and turn them upside down.
Pair your macaron shells according to size and lay them out on your bench.
Put your green tea ganache into a piping bag.
Fill one half of your paired macaron shells filling them generously but keeping a space of approximately 3mm from the edge of the shell.
Pick up the macaron filled with ganache in one hand and the empty pair in the other and close the macaron by gently twisting the two shells together from left to right.
Remember to let the filling spread regularly all the way to the edge of the shells.
STORING AND SERVING
Put the finished macarons on a tray and leave them in the fridge for at least 24 hours.Prior to serving, let the macarons return to room temperature.