How to Make Saffron Macaron: A Step by Step Recipe
Macaron, a sweet cookie first believed to have been introduced in France, was then a simple cookie; a combination of ground almonds, egg white, and sugar without any special flavor. The typical shape which most people know macaron with now was presented in the 19th century. This form includes a ganache or butter-creamed filling sandwiched between cookies. Two halves of airy cookies with a layer of filling in between and the mixture easily melt in the mouth. While typical flavors include chocolate, pistachio, rose and caramel, the pastry evolved throughout the years and each country added their traditional flavors to it.
Here, we are going to give instruction for a saffron-based macaron which you definitely will find delicious to eat. But, before starting to prepare the ingredients and following the steps, note that making macron involves two main steps: preparing the filling and the shell and you may need to prepare some ingredients a few days before.
The total time needed to make almost 12-18 macrons (depending on their size) is about 30 minutes to prepare the ingredients and 15 minutes to cook, but a total of almost 1 hour and 50 minutes.
Ingredients for saffron macaron:
- 100 g double cream (you can also make the cream using 6 tbsp unsalted butter, a pinch of salt, 4 cups powdered sugar, and 2 tbsp warm) heavy cream
- A pinch of saffron
- 2 tbsp mango powder, cardamom powder or canned pumpkin, or any other flavor depending on your taste
- 200g powdered sugar
- 100g almond flour (or almond)
- 3 egg whites, room temperature
- 40g granulated sugar
- ½ tsp saffron, grounded
- A drop of yellow or orange color
How to prepare saffron macaron:
Before mixing the ingredients, we recommend putting egg whites covered in the fridge for at least 24 hours (for better results 5 days is recommended). Separate egg whites and place them in a bowl, cover them with a plastic wrap with a few holes and keep them in a fridge. This would reduce the moisture and consequently make the macaron shells firmer. Though the step isn’t a must, we highly recommend it for better results.
- Powder the almonds or add the almond flour, icing sugar, and saffron powder in a grinder to make a fine powder. Transfer mixture to a mixing bowl and mix in the remaining confectioner’s sugar. Sieve the mixture 1-3 times in a larger bowl to break the lumps and set aside to prepare other ingredients.
- Make the meringue: In a bowl of a stand mixer or using an electronic blender, whisk egg whites till it changes to foam and forms soft peaks. Add caster sugar gradually and beat to form stiff peaks and glossy meringue. Once all the sugar is incorporated and stiff peaks are formed, you can add the food color (if any) and beat again. Do not overbeat which eventually results in dry shells.
- Sifting the dry mixture, add it to the meringue, one-third at a time. Fold until no dry mixture can be seen, the mixture is smooth and there is no air in the mix. Once done, the batter should be firm and drip ruggedly down the spatula when you lift it. The batter should not be too runny so do not overwhip.
- Pour the batter into a pastry bag with a plain tip and twist the end of the bag tight once all the batter is poured in. Pipe out a small round of about 1-1.5 inches in diameter on baking paper with at least 2 inches in between them. Shake the sheet in different directions to remove air bubbles and also make the circles smoother.
- Preheat oven to 150 degrees. Line baking sheets with baking paper or Silpat. Put the piping bag in a tall glass to make scooping in the batter easier.
- Let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes to perform a thin skin on top. Check by touching the surface lightly, it should not stick to your finger.
- Bake the shells for 12-15 minutes. Do not open the oven until they are done. Then take them out.
- Let them cool on the baking sheets for 30 minutes and then peel gently and sort each 2 of them with the size.
Prepare the filling
Add the heavy cream and saffron in a bowl. Stir well until combined and the deep orange hue of saffron take over the mix. Let it sit for a couple of minutes. You can also whip butter and salt to make a creamy mixture and then add the flavors including saffron, mango powder, cardamom powder, or any other flavor based on your interest to the mixture and finally the sugar to mix till a smooth mixture is prepared. Let it rest in the fridge until it firms up.
Make the saffron macaron
Finally, fill a pastry bag with the filling mixture and pipe the flat side of the macaron shell on the rim. Top it with the same sized macaron shell to cover the icing.