Makes: 12
Active time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Setting time: 5 minutes
Chilling time: 3 hours
Storage: Up to 4 days in the refrigerator

Extracted from Chocolate: Recipes and Techniques from the Ferrandi School of Culinary Arts (Flammarion, 2019) by FERRANDI Paris. Photography © Rina Nurra2019.

Sweet treats direct from the Ferrandi School of Culinary Arts in Paris.


Ingredients

For the macaron shells (makes 24 shells)

  • Scant 1 cup (3 oz./85 g) almond flour
  • 2 tbsp (0.5 oz./15 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup (3.5 oz./100 g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 tbsp (1.5 oz./40 g) egg white (about 1½ whites), at room temperature

For the italian meringue

  • ½ cup (3.5 oz./100 g) superfine sugar
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) water
  • 3 tbsp (1.5 oz./40 g) egg white (about 1½ whites), at room temperature

For the dark chocolate ganache

  • ½ cup minus 2 tsp (115 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 1¾ tsp (0.5 oz./12 g) honey
  • 4 oz. (115 g) dark couverture chocolate, 65% cacao, finely chopped

For the chocolate disks

  • 9 oz. (250 g) dark couverture chocolate, 65% cacao, finely chopped

Directions

For the macaron shells and the italian meringue

1Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C/Gas mark 2). Stir the almond flour, cocoa powder, and confectioners’ sugar together in a bowl. Transfer to the bowl of the food processor. Pulse until a flour-like consistency is obtained, being careful not to overwork and heat the ingredients.

2To prepare the Italian meringue, dissolve the sugar in the water and boil to 240°F–250°F (116°C–121°C).

3When the temperature of the syrup reaches 230°F (110°C), begin whisking the egg whites in the stand mixer at high speed. When the required temperature of the syrup is reached, very carefully pour it over the partially whisked egg whites in a thin, steady stream, taking care not to let it touch the beaters and whisking continuously.

4Reduce to medium speed after 2 minutes. Whisk until the mixture has cooled completely. When the meringue has cooled to about 122°F (50°C), fold in the almond flour, cocoa powder, and sugar mixture with a spatula. Pour in the egg whites.

5Begin to fold the mixtures together with a spatula. Continue folding until the meringue has deflated slightly and you have a smooth mixture that falls off the spatula in thick ribbons. Line a baking sheet (at room temperature) with a silicone mat. Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag and pipe macaron shells approximately 1 in. (2.5 cm) in diameter onto the mat.

6Carefully lift up the baking sheet slightly and gently drop it back onto the work surface to make the tops of the macarons smooth. Bake for 15 minutes.

For the dark chocolate ganache

1Heat the cream and honey in a saucepan until the temperature reaches 95°F (35°C).

2Meanwhile, melt the dark chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water (bain-marie) to 95°F (35°C).

3Pour the cream over the melted chocolate and stir gently with a spatula to make a smooth ganache.

4Line a baking sheet with plastic wrap, spread the ganache over it, and press another piece of plastic wrap over the surface. Chill for 30–40 minutes.

For the chocolate disks

1Temper the dark chocolate. Lay the stencil on a silicone baking mat.

2Once the tempered chocolate cools to 86°F (30°C), pour it over the stencil so it fills the circles.

3Remove excess chocolate with a spatula and allow the disks to set for 5 minutes.

Assembling the macarons

1Spoon the ganache into a pastry bag, pipe it over the flat side of half the shells, and lightly press the remaining shells on top so the filling reaches the edges.

2Decorate each macaron with a chocolate disk, fixing it in place with a little melted chocolate.

3Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

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