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Chocolate Macarons

French macarons (from the Italian maccherone, or meringue) are typically a sweet meringue confection filled with preserves, caramel or buttercream; these chocolate ones are a light-as-a-feather French treat. The sugar syrup method results in a delicate, delicious meringue subtly flavored with almonds, and the filling is intensely rich and decadent.

Ingredients

Macaron Part I:

  • ¾ C (64 g) almond meal
  • ¾ C (98 g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 T (7 g) unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 lg egg white

Macaron Part II:

  • 1 lg egg white
  • 2 T (30 ml) water
  • ¾ C (144 g) sugar

Filling:

  • ¾ C (177 g) heavy cream
  • 7 oz (198 g) dark chocolate (between 66% and 72%), chopped
  • 3½ T (50 g) unsalted butter, melted

Directions

Preheat oven to 340°F (170°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place a damp kitchen towel on kitchen counter.

Part I: Place almond meal, confectioners’ sugar and cocoa in medium bowl, stirring to combine. Place 1 egg white in a medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer until firm, shiny peaks form. Spoon into almond mixture; gently fold to combine.

Part II: Place remaining egg white in a medium bowl, beating until soft peaks form; set aside. Place water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring frequently until sugar has dissolved. Increase heat to medium and continue to boil until mixture reaches 245°F (120°C) on a candy thermometer. Very gradually pour sugar syrup into egg white, constantly beating with an electric mixer until shiny peaks form. Fold into almond mixture. Spoon mixture into a large pastry bag fitted with a large round tip and squeeze out 24 disks about 2 inches across onto parchment paper, leaving 1 inch between each. Let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes then bake for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and, leaving macarons on parchment paper, move paper on top of damp kitchen towel. Let cool to room temperature.

Filling: Place cream in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat; cook until bubbles begin to appear around the edges. Remove from heat; add chocolate and butter, stirring until smooth. Let stand, stirring occasionally, until cool. To assemble, spoon a dollop of filling between two macarons, forming a sandwich.

  • Prep time: 55 minutes.
  • Cook time: 20 minutes.
  • Makes 12 servings.