Gabe and I just returned from celebrating Passover in L.A. Last year was my first time ever hosting a Passover seder, and this year it was really great to learn from the pros. My contribution to the feast was three dozen French macarons. Sure, the Israelites didn’t have time to make finicky little cookies while fleeing Egypt, but perhaps they had more time while wandering in the desert for 40 years…?
Anyway, macarons are flourless and much loved by Gabe’s family, so I carefully packed my precious cargo and carried it on a seven-hour trip. Little did I know that the most dangerous part of the journey would be a waiting period in the Ulman family freezer, where half of the macarons mysteriously disappeared in the days before the Seder. I blame Pharaoh. Or some dessert plague.
Vanilla Latte Macarons
- 110 grams almond meal
- 200 grams powdered sugar
- 100 grams egg whites (about 3)
- 50 grams granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
- 1 tsp. ground coffee
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 Tbs. milk
Using a whisk or pastry blender, combine almond meal and powdered sugar in medium bowl. (Try to remove as many chunks as possible.) Using a stand mixer or hand blender, whip the egg whites on medium-high speed until they are foamy. Gradually add the granulated sugar and whip until a smooth, shiny meringue with stiff peaks forms. Stir in vanilla extract.
Add the almond mixture to the meringue and quickly but gently fold together using a wide rubber spatula until no streaks remain. The batter should be thick and should form “ribbons” when drizzled from the spatula.
Pipe the batter into round shapes (1- 1 1/2 inches in diameter) on baking sheets lined with silicone mats or parchment paper. Let sit at room temperature for one hour.
Bake at 300° F for 10-16 minutes. Transfer baking sheets to a wire rack and don’t disturb the shells until they’re completely cool.
Meanwhile, make frosting: Beat butter with a mixer on medium-high until light and fluffy. Combine coffee and vanilla extract to form a paste, and then mix the coffee paste into the butter. Slowly add powdered sugar and a pinch of salt and beat until frosting comes together. Add milk and beat until frosting is fluffy.
Assemble macarons by sandwiching two shells around a smidgen of frosting.