This week has been nuts.
I’m finally cleared to drive again so I took myself on a little jaunt to the grocery store (easy) and to and from Vancouver for an appointment with my surgeon (pushing it).
My physical therapist described my knee as “gritty” which was so not what I wanted to hear from him. But he did spend a solid chunk of my appointment doing a form of massage to disperse and get rid of the scar tissue, so I can’t really be mad about that. Who ever says no to a massage?!
Although I am so over this recovery. It’s going SO SLOWLY and as possibly the most impatient person in the world, that’s not really working for me. The only things keeping me from banging my head against a wall are my best friends, my parents and finally being able to do some baking again.
And I’m glad I’ve got stools in my kitchen to sit on as I bake because standing for an extended period of time is just not happening right now.
After a pretty positive check-up with my surgeon on Wednesday, I was so ready to do some baking yesterday.
And surprise, surprise I went with my favourite thing to bake, macarons!
Milk chocolate buttercream and crushed mini eggs, sandwiched between two dainty shells.
It’s a match made in heaven, you guys 😍
Mini eggs are an essential part of Easter, macarons are one of the keys to my heart. THIS PAIRING MAKES SO MUCH SENSE.
During this process I had a battle with the batter, a fight with my oven (uneven heating and an inaccurate temperature are not ideal), and even held a bowl of whipped egg whites upside-down over my head (they stayed in the bowl, thank goodness!)
Fortunately the end result was damn near perfect.
For the shells:
200g almond flour
200g powdered sugar
2 1/2 fl. oz. water
160g egg whites, separated in half (80g)
Gel food colouring (optional)
Put almond flour and powdered sugar in food processor and process until fine. Sift into a bowl and set aside.
In a saucepan, bring water and sugar to a boil (do not stir). Make sure mixture doesn’t go above 240°F.
In a mixer, gently beat 80g egg whites to soft peaks. When sugar mixture reaches 220°F, increase beater speed. When syrup reaches 240°F remove from heat and pour in a thin stream into beaten egg whites. Beat for a further 10 minutes to cool down the meringue.
While the meringue is beating, combine the sifted ingredients and the remaining 80g egg whites to form an almond paste. If adding colour, add it to the paste before adding meringue.
With a flexible spatula, incorporate 1/3 of the meringue into the almond paste to loosen it up. Then add remaining meringue, carefully working the batter.
Fit a piping bag with a large, round tip and fill with batter. Pipe onto silicone or parchment-lined baking sheets. Lightly tap the bottoms on your countertop and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 300°F. Bake for 14 minutes.
Melt your milk chocolate and set aside to cool.
Once chocolate is completely cool, sift the powdered sugar and cream together with the butter.
Add the cream and vanilla extract and beat until incorporated.
Fold in the melted chocolate, then beat until buttercream is nice and fluffy.
Pair together macaron shells of similar shape and size. Pipe some buttercream on one half of each pair, then sprinkle crushed mini eggs on top and gently sandwich together.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.