Desserts/Pastries

Coconut Macarons with White Chocolate-Mango Ganache

Coconut Macarons with White Chocolate-Mango Ganache

Coconut again?! Yup. This time in Macaron form. What can I say, I’m a coco-nutty kind of gal.

I learned my lessons from our first Parisian Macarons experience and paid heed to do the following:

  • Use a scale to measure the weight of ingredients;
  • Age the egg whites;
  • Let the shells “harden” for at least 30 minutes before baking;

Initially I had wanted to fill the Coconut Shells with a Passion Fruit-flavor filling but was unsuccessful in finding a pure concentrate or nectar flavoring agent. But since I had Mango extract on hand, I figured it would be a nice tropical “oompf” for the white chocolate ganache filling. Unfortunately it didn’t bring out as much of the mango flavor as I had hoped—though the end result was still quite tasty. Next time, I’m taking my sister’s advice and use a pineapple filling. Coconut Shells + Pineapple Filling = Piña Colada Macarons. And that, dear friends, is a Nguyen-Win Situation at its best 🙂


Coconut Macarons
Piped shells “aging” for 45 minutes. I only had almond meal that had almonds ground with their skins in tact—thus the pretty speckled pattern.


Coconut Macarons
Les pieds des Macarons!!!! Oh YES– the feet 🙂

I have to admit that I did exhale a sigh a relief after making these little treats. Thank goodness that it wasn’t just beginner’s luck last time! But on the next try, I think I’m going Caramel flavored.

So until my next kitchen adventure Mes Amis, a tout le heure!


Coconut Macarons with White Chocolate-Mango Ganache

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Coconut Macarons with White Chocolate-Mango Ganache

Ingredients:

Macarons Shells:
110 Grams Almond Meal
180 Grams Confectioners’ Sugar
25 Grams Ground Desiccated Coconut
100 Grams Egg Whites, aged at room temperature for 24 hours
50 Grams Granulated Sugar

White Chocolate-Mango Ganache
8 Ounces White Chocolate, finely chopped
4 Ounces Heavy Cream
1 Teaspoon Pure Mango Extract
1-2 Drops Yellow Food Coloring (optional)

Grind almond meal, desiccated coconuts, and confectioners’ sugar in a food processor to remove any lumps. Sift mixture into another bowl and set aside.

In a mixing stand, whisk egg whites until frothy. Slowly add granulated sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks are formed. Carefully begin incorporating dry mixture into the meringue—gently folding until all items have been integrated.

Using a piping bag fitted with a large round tip, pipe small rounds of the mixture onto Silpat lined baking sheets. Rounds should be about 1½ inches in diameter. Once baking sheets are filled, tap the sheet carefully but firmly on the counter to remove any possible air pockets. Let baking sheets sit on the counter for 45 minutes to harden the outer shell before baking.

Bake at 300 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Transfer the pans to cooling rack and cool completely before removing shells.

In a saucepan, bring cream to a boil. Remove from heat and strain the hot cream through a fine-meshed sieve directly into the bowl of the chopped chocolate. Let the mixture sit 1 to 2 minutes without stirring, and then gently whisk until the chocolate is entirely melted. Stir in the mango extract and food coloring. Cover with plastic wrap and chill about 20 minutes, or until slightly thickened.

Transfer ganache to a piping bag and fill the macaron shells.

 

Coconut Macarons with White Chocolate-Mango Ganache

Desserts/Pastries

White Chocolate-Macadamia Nut Cookies

Somewhere along the way I became known as a Cupcake Baker. Now don’t get me wrong…it’s not a bad title to have–especially since cupcakes are just so darn tasty and make people smile. But it made me realize that I have been sorely neglecting my other sweet treats—cookies, brownies, tarts, pies, etc.

In an effort to share the love amongst other baked goods, I decided to whip up a batch of cookies. After thumbing through some recipes, I found a post by Brown Eyed Baker for a White Chocolate-Macademia Nut Cookie. I have always LOVED White Chocolate Mac-Nut cookies and was intrigued with her rendition as she described it as “slightly crisp on the outside with a soft and chewy interior”–my favorite cookie profile. She also said that it was packed with chips and nuts–sounded like a winner to me!

After the first batch came out, I broke one in half and took a bite. Yup, she was right. Crispy outside and extremely chewy and chunky inside. In fact, while I was scooping out the dough onto the baking sheets, I was a bit worried that there were going to be too many chunks and not enough cookie dough. But fear not friends, as somehow things just worked itself out in the oven. What can I say? Magic happens in ovens 🙂

 

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White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies
Yield: About 2 dozen cookies (depending on size)
From Brown Eyed Baker

Ingredients:
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
½ Teaspoon Baking Soda
½ Teaspoon Salt
Âľ Cup Butter (melted)
1 Cup Light Brown Sugar
½ Cup White Sugar
1 Egg
1 Egg Yolk
1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
1½ Cups Chopped Macadamia Nuts
2 Cups White Chocolate Chips
½ Cup Shredded Coconut (Optional)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease baking sheets or line with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt and set aside. Beat together the melted butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the egg, then beat in the egg yolk, then beat in the vanilla. Gradually add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture until just moistened. Stir in the macadamia nuts, coconut and white chocolate chips by hand with a rubber spatula. Roll into balls or drop by heaping tablespoons onto baking sheets, and press down on the cookies with your palm a bit to flatten.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the edges look golden brown and the middles don’t look quite set. Allow to finish cooling on the baking sheet.