I saw a quote on Instagram the other day that I really liked and thought was kind of funny. It said, “I just don’t want to look back and think… I could have eaten that.” For me that quote would read more like…”I just don’t want to look back and think… I could have MADE that.”
I sort of have this “bucket list” when it comes to cooking and baking. The things that are on it are things that I THINK are more challenging. Things that I have a greater chance of messing up. I’m just going to get it out there…things I am afraid to try. Ok, I said it…yes, that I am AFRAID to try. Sounds silly doesn’t it? I’m not sure, but sometimes I think guests who come to my kitchen think only good things are prepared in it, but let me assure you I have had my share of disasters! Everyone does. You know, the recipe that sounded really good, but then you tried the first spoonful and it was heave-ho right into the trash!
I will say I have more items on my “baking bucket list” than I do on my “cooking bucket list”. I love to cook and it seems like most of the time (not ALL of the time) I can fix what I have cooked because I never go overboard initially with spices and salt and pepper. Like Ree Drummond says “you can always add more, but you can’t take out what you’ve already put in”. I love to bake but, baking has been a little bit tougher for me to master, but over the years I have learned from my mistakes and am slowing crossing off items on “the list”. Happily, some items that have already been checked off are brioche rolls, pretzel rolls and now finally macarons!
I have wanted to make macarons like forever, but yes I was too scared to attempt it! They look so beautiful, so they must be hard. Too time-consuming. Pastry bags, piping tips, fillings….too many details! Well, with a little coaxing from my good friend Hakeem who is a pastry chef I attempted the impossible…or so I thought!! They weren’t that hard at all and believe it or not they were really fun to make. And while you are waiting for the macarons to rest before baking you can make your filling. It really is amazing how many flavors and colors of macarons there are too. Hakeem suggested Strawberry Shortcake Macarons so we tweaked his original macaron recipe and….
TAA DAA…..I present to you DELICIOUS Strawberry Shortcake Macarons with Vanilla Buttercream filling with fresh pieces of juicy, sweet strawberries!!!!!
Strawberry Shortcake Macarons………DONE!! THANKS Hakeem!
- 2/3 cup almond flour
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
- 4 oz. egg whites about 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter one stick room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
- 3-4 tsp. whole milk
- 1/2 cup strawberries finely chopped
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
In a medium bowl sift together almond flour and confectioners sugar. Set aside.
Beat egg whites in the bowl of a standing mixer using a whisk attachment until soft peaks form. (about 3 minutes) Slowly add granulated sugar and vanilla and continue to beat on high for 2 minutes until stiff peaks form. Add almond flour mixture to egg whites and fold in slowly by hand until well incorporated.
Scoop macaron mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a #806 tip. Pipe quarter size circles (1 - 1 1/2 inch) on parchment lined baking sheets about 1 inch apart. After piping leave out to rest on your counter at room temperature for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Bake macarons for 15-17 minutes. I only baked one tray at a time. Cool on tray before frosting.
Buttercream Frosting: In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment beat butter and vanilla extract on medium speed until light and fluffy. (about 2 minutes) Turn mixer to low and slowly add confectioners sugar. Beat for 2 minutes scraping down the bowl after 1 minute. Add the milk one teaspoon at a time until the frosting is at a good piping consistency and continue to beat for 3-4 minutes. Scoop the buttercream frosting into a pastry bag fitted with the #806 tip and pipe the buttercream onto the flat side of one of the macarons, top with 4 to 5 finely chopped pieces of strawberry and then sandwich together.