So I turn 30-ish on this day and how am I going to celebrate? Nothing too over the top, just a quiet celebration with new-found friends and a dinner at a secret venue planned by the Man. On this day, I definitely miss my family and friends back at home where celebrations can often stretch for a while because of the different groups of friends that I get to celebrate the occasion with.
So what do I end up doing? Baking up a batch of macarons to celebrate the day of course! Turns out blog-friend S’s birthday also falls pretty near to mine, so I decided to whip up a batch of these delicate macarons for her as well. Tuesday’s failed macaron episode left me a little disappointed so I was pretty determined to fix what went wrong.
I was recently gifted with a jar of home-made vanilla salted caramel by fellow Singaporean YL. Hurray for me for I had no clue how to make caramel from scratch. Or rather, I’ve heard how one can actually hurt oneself by making caramel so this jar of salted caramel definitely came in handy.
I started surfing the web and this recipe popped out – Salted buttered popcorn macarons with salted caramel. Weird combi but it was one that really piqued my interest. Better yet, we had a bag of popcorn that was sitting around so I decided to incorporate this into the batch of macarons.
And what a winning combo it turned out to be! When we go to the movies, my popcorn of choice – salted with just a tinge of sweet popcorn inside. That was until Garrett popcorn came over and messed up my taste-buds completely with its overtly sweet caramel popcorn. In terms of flavour, the salted buttered popcorn macarons shells that I baked up really had the crunch. The salted caramel added just the sweet touch that marries both flavours.
I couldn’t think of a better flavor to celebrate my special day with.
Salted Buttered Popcorn Macarons with Salted Caramel
Makes about 16 filled bite-sized macarons
For Macaron Batter
- 1 egg white (preferably aged for 3 days) brought to room temperature
- A pinch of egg white powder (I used Dr Oetker Egg White Powder purchased in London)
- 38g icing sugar
- 36g powdered almonds
- 30g granulated sugar
- Crushed salted buttered popcorn
- Line baking tray with 2 pieces of parchment paper.
- Sift powdered sugar with the almond powder to ensure that there are no lumps.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg white until they begin to foam. At this stage, add the pinch of egg white powder and the granulated sugar gradually. Continue beating until very stiff and firm. When you invert the bowl, the egg white batter has to stay put. That’s the time you know when you should stop. I decided to play it safe and whisked the egg white batter for about 5 minutes before stiff peaks were formed.
- Carefully fold the dry ingredients, in 3 batches, into the beaten egg whites with a flexible rubber spatula (ideally). Stop folding when the mixture is smooth and there are no streaks of egg white. I used about 40 strokes to incorporate the dry mixture into the egg whites. Scrape the batter into the pastry bag (standing the bag in a tall glass helps if you’re alone).
- Pipe the batter on the parchment-lined baking sheets in 1-inch circles, evenly spaced one-inch (3 cm) apart.
- Rap the baking sheet a few times firmly on the counter top to flatten the macarons and to remove the air-bubbles in the macarons.
- Sprinkle on top of macarons crushed popcorn.
- Leave the macarons out in the open for at least 30 minutes to an hour. This step is important to allow the top of the macaron shell to dry up so that you get a smooth surface for the macarons. You will know when to pop the macarons into the oven when you touch the macarons and the batter does not stick to your fingers. Be careful not to leave them out too much for it will give you crunchy macarons and you don’t want that. This step is important and if you skip it, your macarons might flatten . While waiting, preheat oven to 140 degrees C.
- Bake for 15 mins and let cool completely before removing from baking sheet.
- I used the gifted salted caramel as the filling for the macarons.
- Simply spoon on the macaron shell.
- Sandwich and you are done!
It’s recommended that you let the flavours sit inside the macaron for 1 day before having them.
I’ve been busy in the kitchen… Click here to check out my baking adventures in Geneva.