Orange Curd Macarons

by angelika on August 6, 2012

I am a big lover of all things orange. I just love the fresh smell of citrus, in food and fragrance. Have you ever smelled the natural cleaner citra solv? I feel like I clean my house just so it can smell that nice fresh orange smell. When I first discovered lemon curd, which I’ll admit was later in life, I was sold. I then went about making the same recipe using all kids of citrus. Lime, orange, grapefruit. All have the same rich and decadent texture and busting with sweet citrus flavor. My yellow macarons were filled with lemon curd, and these orange macarons with orange curd. In my mind, citrus curd is the perfect compliment to a macaron. There is just something about the burst of flavor that I swoon for. My all time favorite macaron is my pistachio with lemon curd. These are close behind.

These will be the last of my rainbow of macarons instalments. While I did not go over the blueberry or strawberry, all I did was add fresh blueberries and strawberries to basic buttercream frosting, so they don’t really need a whole post. 1/2 cup fruit in the frosting really does the trick. If the fruit is too wattery you can add a little more powdered sugar to the mixture.

Preheat the oven to 375º.

To begin, process the almond flour and powdered sugar in the food processor. This ensures that the powders are very fine and the lumps that form in powdered sugar are worked out. Set the mixture aside.
Make sure to leave your eggs out overnight. This aging is supposed to ensure a more stable meringue. Separate the eggs and put the whites in the mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. On medium begin to beat the eggs. Gradually increase the speed to high. When the egg whites start to foam, add the granulated sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff “bird beak” peaks form. Add the vanilla extract.
Pour the almond mixture into the egg whites and begin to mix. You don’t have to be too gentle, a little force is actually best. Once the flour mixture is incorporated you begin to macaronage. (If you are adding food coloring you do it now.) You want to continue to fold the batter and as you fold it, you spread it out against the side of the bowl. So take your silicone spatula, and run it down the center of the batter, flip the left half over, then smear the whole thing once against the side of the bowl. So think of starting at 12 o’clock and smearing until about 9 o’clock. Shift the bowl 90º. Then you divide down the center again and fold over the left half, then smear again. Clear as mud? This is the part that you just have to get the feel for, and this is also the part that makes all the difference. Getting this right, will insure your success. It actually isn’t so much how well you macaronage, but how well you recognize when it is ready. You are looking for the batter to fold gently on itself in ribbons when you suspend the spatula. For more detailed instruction and pictures please refer to the Pistachio Macarons with Lemon Curd.
Using a piping bag with a round tip, or just the coupler and no tip, pipe out the cookies. You do this by piping straight down, flooding the area, and then pulling quickly up. Try to make them uniform, but don’t worry too much about it. In the end you just match two that are the same size. Using an air core cookie sheet is best, but you can also use a sheet pan and stack two together. Make sure to line with parchment. It is essential that the cookies not get hot too fast, or they crack. Rap the sheet on the counter 6 times, to remove the air bubbles.
In my oven, I bake the cookies at 375º for 7 minutes and then open the oven for a blast of cool air. 7 minutes is just when the foot has appeared. I close the door and let them go another 4-6 minutes. They go less on an air core cookie sheet and a little longer on the double stacked sheet pans. You are looking for the meringue to be just firm, with no browning at all. In some ovens they burn at 375º and need to bake at 325º. My oven tends to run cool, and when I bake I always go to the maximum time a recipe calls for. If your oven is more efficient, turn it down to 325º when you put your cookies in.
Combine egg yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Whisk to combine. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon. Remove from heat, and add the cubes of butter, a few at a time,  stirring constantly, until the butter is melted and combined. Place the curd in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap touching the surface of the curd, this prevents a film from forming. Refrigerate for an hour to cool and set up.

Match cookies of like size togehther and fill with about a teaspoon of curd. Let the cookies rest in the refrigerator overnight. This ensures the best texture. Remove the cookies 20 minutes before serving, to allow them to come to room temp.

Orange Curd Macarons
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Vanilla macarons filled with orange curd.
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Serves: 50
Ingredients
  • ⅔ cups almond flour
  • 1½ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 large egg whites at room temperature, eggs left out overnight
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • a few drops of orange gel food coloring (optional)
  • ~orange curd~
  • 3 egg yolks
  • zest of half an orange
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 tablespoons butter, cubed
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375º.
  2. To begin, process the almond flour and powdered sugar in the food processor. This ensures that the powders are very fine and the lumps that form in powdered sugar are worked out. Set the mixture aside.
  3. n medium begin to beat the eggs. Gradually increase the speed to high. When the egg whites start to foam, add the granulated sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff “bird beak” peaks form.
  4. Add the vanilla extract.
  5. Pour the almond mixture into the egg whites and begin to mix. You don’t have to be too gentle, a little force is actually best. Once the flour mixture is incorporated you begin to macaronage. You want to continue to fold the batter and as you fold it, you spread it out against the side of the bowl. So take your silicone spatula, and run it down the center of the batter, flip the left half over, then smear the whole thing once against the side of the bowl.
  6. Using a piping bag with a round tip, or just the coupler and no tip, pipe out the cookies. You do this by piping straight down, flooding the area, and then pulling quickly up. Try to make them uniform, but don’t worry too much about it. In the end you just match two that are the same size.
  7. In my oven I bake the cookies at 375º for 7 minutes and then open the oven for a blast of cool air. 7 minutes is just when the foot has appeared. I close the door and let them go another 4-6 minutes.
  8. (You are looking for the meringue to be just firm, with no browning at all. In some ovens they burn at 375º and need to bake at 325º.)
  9. Let the macarons cool on the sheet for a few minutes, they should then release easily.
  10. ~orange curd~
  11. in a saucepan, whisk together the egg yolk, sugar, zest and orange juice
  12. cook on medium heat until the sugar has dissolved
  13. switch to a wooden spoon and stir while continuing to cook until the curd coats the back of the spoon. Check this by running your finger down the spoon- you should be able to draw a line through it.
  14. Take the curd off the heat and stir in the butter, one or two pieces at a time.
  15. Transfer to a bowl and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap, touching the curd. This ensures you don't get a film on top.
  16. Refrigerate for an hour to firm.
  17. Match like size cookies and fill with orange curd. Let the cookies rest in the fridge overnight to ensure the best texture.

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