Blog-checking lines: For the month of October, we got to take on one of many bakers' deepest, darkest kitchen nightmares: macarons. Our talented bakers Korena from Korena in the Kitchen, and Rachael from pizzarossa made the intimidating task of mastering these French beauties a breeze.
I've blogged about French macarons before, so instead of making one the the traditional variations of macarons, I decided to challenge myself to something different. I recently bought a delicious locally made raspberry jam, and wanted to make some sort of macaron in which I could use the jam as a filling. I settled on making a completely nontraditional take on macarons, using ground peanuts in place of some of the almond flour to create a "PB & J" flavored macaron. The result was slightly richer than the more traditional recipes, but I enjoyed the challenge and the resulting macarons!
PB & J Macarons
Makes about 15 macarons
1/4 cup unsalted roasted peanuts
1/4 cup almond flour
1 cup confectioner's sugar
2 large egg whites, at room temperature
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup raspberry jam
1. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Trace thirty 1 1/2 inch circles on the paper, separating circles by about 1 1/2 inches. Flip paper over, so that circles can still be seen on parchment paper.
2. Grind peanuts in a food processor to form a fine powder. Add almond flour and confectioner's sugar and pulse to combine. Sift mixture to remove any large pieces.
3. Beat egg whites in a large bowl until foamy. Gradually beat in the granulated sugar. Continue beating until soft peaks form, then beat in vanilla extract. Continue beating until stiff peaks form. Carefully fold in peanut mixture until combined.
4. Preheat oven to 340 F.
5. Use a pastry bag to pipe the batter into the traced circles on the parchment paper. Tap baking sheets against counter to remove any air bubbles. Allow macarons to sit at room temperature for 15-30 minutes while oven preheats.
6. Bake macarons at 340 F for about 13-15 minutes, until slightly crisp. Macarons should lift easily off of parchment paper when done.
7. Allow macarons to cool to room temperature on a cooling rack. Carefully remove from parchment paper. Spread a thin layer of jam on the flat side of one macaron, and top with another macaron. Repeat with the remaining macarons. Enjoy!
-Posted by Jennifer
-Adapted from recipe available at http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/peanut-butter-jam-macaroons-recipe.html
-Original challenge available at http://www.thedaringkitchen.com/recipe/macarons