Christmas Wreath Macarons

For the macarons:

  • 70 grams egg whites
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar
  • 70 grams granulated sugar
  • 93 grams of almond flour (I use brands “Amoretti” or “Oh Nuts”)
  • 84 grams of powdered sugar
  1. A few hours before making your macarons, separate the egg whites into a bowl and seal with Saran wrap.  Poke tiny holes in the Saran wrap. Leave it out at room temperature. If it’s very hot in your home, put it in the fridge and before baking, allow to come to room temperature.  I will say though that I’ve tried egg whites straight out of the fridge and it worked just fine.
  2. Sift you powdered sugar and almond flour so it’s fine or use a food processor.  Just be careful using a food processor because if you don’t thoroughly mix the two well before putting them in the food processor, the oil from the almond flour can cause your macarons to be wrinkly or splotchy.  If you sift, you don’t run into that problem, but do make sure to gently mix with a spoon so you incorporate the two ingredients.
  3. Place your egg whites in your mixing bowl and use whisk attachment. Mix on low speed, and then increase the speed a bit.  When it gets bubbly and frothy looking (I know it’s a gross comparison, but when it looks like bubbly spit), add the cream of tartar. The mixture should look foamy as you continue to mix these two.
  4. Then add granulated sugar, slowly pouring the sugar into the mixture. Make sure your mixer speed is still on low.  Then increase your mixer speed slowly and all the way up to high speed. Wait until it forms soft stiff peaks (may take 5 -8 minutes).  To test it, take your whisk attachment off and see if the stiff peak stays on it; nothing should move off your whisk at this point.
  5. Some people add gel color at this point and you can do that.  Some people also add flavorings at this point, but I avoid that totally because it can compromise your batter with the liquid depending on the brand or consistency.  IMPORTANT: for coloring: make sure it is Gel food coloring and not liquid as liquid will make your meringue runny. I personally wait until I fold my entire wet and dry ingredients until I add color.
  6. Fold almond mixture into meringue mixture until it forms a consistency that is shiny, thick and lava like but also falls off the spatula slowly but not running down it.  Sometimes after you add the almond flour mixture, your color will be lighter, so if you want to add more food coloring, do so now as you are folding. When you get that “molten lava” consistency, you are ready to pipe!  
  7. Pour the batter into a pastry bag with a round tip (I use a Wilton #12 nozzle) and pipe donut shaped circle (this will be the top of the macaron) as well as small circles (this will be the bottom of the macaron) onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.  Tap the sheets about 3x onto a hard surface to remove air bubbles. This is extremely important! Also, pop the remaining air bubbles with a toothpick. Let the batter sit to develop a skin anywhere from 10- 30 minutes at least (this will form the top shell surface and ensure the shells do not break or crack as they bake.  It will also help with achieving the “feet”). Now, I have lately reduced resting time as I see some people say it’s not needed! I usually rest for 10 minutes now, even with characters, and I’m usually fine with that. I also noticed doing that produces smaller feet for me. But you should touch the macs lightly with your fingertip and see if it’s sticky and not wet. If it’s not wet, it should be ready for baking.
  8. Then place in the oven at 300 F (use an oven thermometer if you can because this is the part that caused my macs to fail a lot. Some say 325F but mine must be at 300F-310F after much trial and error. You will find what works best for you.  You may have to test this too because ovens can be calibrated differently).
  9. Bake for about twelve minutes-twenty minutes on the middle rack (time depends on various factors like your pan, your oven, if you use silicone mats or parchment).  Only bake one tray at a time. Remove the tray after they bake and place onto a wire rack. Cool completely before removing otherwise they could stick to the mat. Then add filling or freeze the macs if you don’t intend to use right away.  They freeze well and very long as long as not filled!!

For the decorations:

  • For the green topping, use Wilton’s meringue powder and the instructions in the box in order to make royal icing.  Color it with Wilton Gel Icing Colors in juniper green or leaf green and then pipe the “donut icing” onto the macarons.  It shouldn’t be perfectly round.  Make it look like real dripping donut icing.  Wait for it to set a few minutes, then add Wilton holly sprinkles.  For the filling, use Wilton’s decorator icing and a tip #12

 

Check out Wilton’s page for more holiday themed treats and tutorials! http://bit.ly/2FaJew6