Thursday 13 November 2014

Chocolate macarons with yuzu curd

I'd pretty much decided not to post macarons again for a while, if ever; mostly people are over them, they're everywhere, even in McDonald's. I still love them with their neatness and symmetry, such a perfect blank canvass for flavour tinkering.  A very lovely person recently called me the "macaron whisperer" and I thought f*#% it, go with what you love, so here's another macaron post.

Chocolate and citrus work so beautifully together; I'm a chocolate orange girl, a gorgeous friend's favourite gelato combo is chocolate and lemon, passionfruit might as well be a citrus fruit and it works perfectly with chocolate. I've been on a bit of a yuzu bender of late, so here we have chocolate yuzu macarons. If you're over macarons maybe just make the yuzu curd, it's a beautiful thing :)

If fresh yuzus are available here in Sydney I haven't found them, but we have a great Japanese supermarket that sells bottled yuzu juice. Now if bottled yuzu juice follows the same pattern as bottled lemon and lime juice, the fresh stuff must be pretty damn amazing. Yuzu are beautifully fragrant and taste decidedly citrusy, somewhere between a mandarin and a grapefruit. So far I've just made the curd, but I'm thinking yuzu sorbet or mousse would be awesome. Roll on mid December when I may actually have a kitchen to bake in...

macaron shells

75g egg white
90g ground almonds
90g icing sugar
20g cocoa powder
100g caster sugar
25ml water

• line 2 baking trays with baking paper
• combine the caster sugar and water in a small, heavy based pan and set aside
• put the ground almonds, icing sugar and cocoa powder in a blender and blitz on the pulse setting for a minute or so • push the nut powder through a sieve into a large bowl, if you have a small amount that won't be pushed through the sieve just toss it out, any more than a teaspoon and it's worth repeating the blitzing stage
• divide the egg white in half, use scales for this stage, you may need to lightly beat the egg white with a fork to break it up • put half in the bowl of a stand mixer, set the other half aside
• over a low heat stir the sugar and water until the sugar dissolves • increase heat to high and bring the syrup to a boil, it's ok to swirl the pan but do not stir (!) • use a wet pastry brush to remove any crystals that form on the side of the pan • check the temperature with a sugar thermometer, you are aiming for 118ºC, but when the temperature reaches 110ºC whisk the egg whites until firm peaks form
• when the sugar syrup reaches 118ºC turn the mixer to low and slowly pour into the bowl, once all the syrup is in, turn the speed to high and whisk until cool
• pour the unbeaten egg white over the nut/sugar/cocoa powder, tip the meringue on top and using a spatula, mix together in a circular motion, lifting the batter from underneath • this method takes a bit of mixing, the batter is ready when a ribbon of batter falls from your spatula and disappears back into the mix within 20-30 seconds
• use a spot of batter under the corners of the baking paper to stick it to the trays
• fit a piping bag with a 10mm nozzle and fill with the batter • pipe 3cm rounds, about 2cm apart, onto the baking paper • tap the trays on the bench, turn through 90º and tap again
• preheat the oven to 150ºC while the macarons rest on the bench for half an hour or so
• bake for 18 minutes, lightly push a macaron from the side, if it moves away from the ruffled foot around the base put them back in the oven for another couple of minutes, then check again
• cool on the tray for a few minutes then transfer to a cooling rack
• pair each shell with a similar sized partner; pipe a circle of ganache filling on the underside of one shell, fill the hollow centre with yuzu curd and gently press its partner on top
• store in an airtight container in the fridge overnight
• allow to come to room temperature to eat and enjoy!!

chocolate ganache

175g dark chocolate (or a 50/50 combination of milk and dark)
125ml cream

• chop the chocolate into small pieces and put in a heat proof bowl 
 heat cream in a small pan until just simmering, allow to simmer for a minute then pour over the chocolate 
 leave for 5 minutes, do not stir! 
 stir cream and chocolate together until smooth and glossy
 cool at room temperature until it is thick enough to pipe, a similar consistency as smooth peanut butter, you can put it in the fridge to speed the process up, but the ganache will lose its gloss

Yuzu Curd

2 eggs 

2 egg yolks
150g caster sugar
80g cold butter
70ml yuzu juice

• whisk the eggs, yolks and sugar together then tip into a small pan with the yuzu juice and butter

• heat gently, stirring constantly, until the butter has melted and the mixture has thickened (enough to coat the back of a spoon)
• strain the curd through a sieve into a sterilised jar, cover the top with cling wrap as it cools to prevent a skin forming
• seal the jar and store in the fridge for up to two weeks


Shellie - Iron Chef Shellie said...

I cleaned out the pantry last week and found a bottle of Yuzu... omg I need to use it, it's already waaaay outta date :P

simmer and boyle said...

Yes, use it! Can't wait to see your creation :) 👊 for the pantry clean up, you're a machine. xx

éva-mona said...

These macarons are pure beauty! I never tasted such a combo but they look so beautiful... I'm impressed!

simmer and boyle said...

Éva thank you so much! I love all things citrus, yuzu is a new favourite.