Ok, I admit it. I am obsessed. I LOVE macarons. Before I'd ever made them I thought, sure, they're cute and it looks like you can do a lot with 'em, but really? They're just meringue. I have no special reason to want to like them. But they are so much more than "just meringue". Last time I made them I had to give the rest away because I was eating them until I felt sick. And I never do that, in fact I rarely eat much of what I make. But these little cookies have me hooked :)
A local market was advertising blackberries for cheap (in the middle of winter!), so I had to get some and make blackberry macarons. I'm also completely addicted to the whipped chocolate caramel ganache from the French Yule Log. I lightly mashed the berries and cooked them down until they weren't runny. Same macaron recipe as last time (Italian meringue style). I piped the ganache around the edge of one macaron and filled the middle with the blackberry and topped it off. I didn't add any sugar to the blackberry, so the sweet of the macaron and chocolate perfectly offset the tart from the berries. The ganache is very winter, and the berries are very summer, the contrast is great.
Macarons: see this post
Ganache (from Flore of Florilège Gourmand)
1.75 oz (4 Tbsp / 50g) granulated sugar
4.5oz (2/3 cup – 1 Tbsp/ 135g) heavy cream (35% fat content)
5 oz (135g) chocolate, finely chopped
3Tbsp + 1/2tsp (45g) unsalted butter softened
1. Make a caramel: Using the dry method, melt the sugar by spreading it in an even layer in a small saucepan with high sides. Heat over medium-high heat, watching it carefully as the sugar begins to melt. Never stir the mixture. As the sugar starts to melt, swirl the pan occasionally to allow the sugar to melt evenly. Cook to dark amber color (for most of you that means darker than last month’s challenge).
2. While the sugar is melting, heat the cream until boiling. Pour cream into the caramel and stir thoroughly. Be very careful as it may splatter and boil.
3. Pour the hot caramel-milk mixture over the dark chocolate. Wait 30 seconds and stir until smooth.
4. Add the softened butter and whip hard and fast (if you have a plunging mixer use it). The chocolate should be smooth and shiny.
17 hours ago