Give a beloved French pastry an Asian spin with nutty black sesame and a dash of matcha.
Servings: 30 cookies
For the macaron shells
300 grams ground almonds
300 grams pure icing sugar (without corn flour added to it)
110 grams liquefied egg whites (see below)
+ 300 grams caster sugar
75 grams water
110 grams liquefied egg whites
150 grams black sesame seeds + 150 grams to sprinkle
Green Tea Ganache
350 grams white chocolate
150 milliliters whipping cream
2 tablespoons green tea powder
Let's get Cooking...
Black Sesame Seed Mixture
For this you can either use a mortar and pestle or a food processor. Add black sesame seeds to a food processor along with 1 tablespoon of the powdered sugar from the macaron shell portion and process for a couple minutes. Not all of the seeds will be crushed, but that's ok.
Green Tea Ganache
Add cream and green tea to a large microwave safe bowl and use a whisk to combine. Add white chocolate and microwave for 20 seconds at a time, mixing each time until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside to chill.
Add half the icing sugar and almond meal and all of the black sesame seed mixture into a food processor and process until well combined. Repeat with the other half. This will help get rid of any lumps in the sugar. Alternatively, you may sift the two together. This must be done at least 3 times.
Empty the almond mixture into a large mixing bowl. Half of it won't be mixed with the sesame seed mixture so use a whisk to mix it together well. Add the first portion of egg whites and mix until it forms a paste. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Add the sugar and water into a small saucepan. Give them a very gentle stir to get them mixed together. Bring to a boil on medium high heat, then turn down to a simmer. Add a candy thermometer to the pot to help you measure the temp of the syrup. As the syrup bubbles away it will splatter small bubbles of sugared water on the sides of the pot. Use a pastry brush dabbed in a little water to brush those back into the syrup. This will help prevent the syrup from crystallising. When the syrup reaches 115C, add the second portion of egg whites to the bowl of a stand mixer and start whisking them on medium/high speed to help break them apart and get them a little frothy.
When the syrup reaches 118C, pour it over the egg whites in a slow and steady stream. Whisk to stiff peaks for about 6 min. Add the COLOUR and vanilla extract at about the 3 min point, whisk into the meringue for a couple of minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down, then whisk for an extra couple of minutes. When you can turn the bowl over and the meringue doesn't fall out, you know you've reached stiff peaks.
Grab a spatula full of the meringue and fold it into the almond-sugar mixture, mix until well combined. This allows the mixture to thin out a little before you add the rest of the mixture. Fold everything together by going around the bowl with a spatula then through the middle (as demonstrated in the video). Continue folding until the batter gets thin enough that it drips off the spatula and falls in a ribbon. It should take about 10 seconds for the ribbon to disappear into the rest of the batter. That's when you know the batter is ready to pipe.
Spoon the batter into a piping bag with a round tip.
Pipe rounds of batter about 3.5 centimeters (1.38 inches) in diameter, spacing them 2 centimeters apart on (flat) baking trays lined with baking parchment. Sprinkle with sprinkles.
Gently tap the tray on the work surface covered with a kitchen cloth. Leave to stand for at least 30 minutes, until a skin forms on the shells. They shouldn't be sticky when you touch them. It's at this point that you can preheat a fan forced oven to 180C (360F)
Bake for 12 minutes. If you feel your oven is causing the macarons to brown on one side (usually the side closest to the fan) turn the tray around about half way through baking. Once they're baked, let them cool completely.
Fit the end of a piping tip with a Wilton #32 piping tip and frost a swirl of ganache on a cookie and then sandwich with another cookie.