Toasted-Almond Macarons with White Chocolate
- Total Time:
- Yield: Makes about 40 sandwich cookies
- 4 ounces (about 3/4 cup) whole almonds, well toasted
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup superfine sugar
- 4 ounces white chocolate
Pulse almonds in a food processor until very finely ground. Sift through a medium-fine sieve into a bowl, returning any remaining large pieces to food processor. Add confectioner's sugar and vanilla seeds and pulse until very finely ground. Sift through sieve and discard any remaining large bits. (There shouldn't be more than 1/4 cup; if there is, continue to pulse.)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Beat egg whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy, about 2 minutes. Add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and beat until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes. Sift almond mixture over whites and fold in with a rubber spatula until batter is smooth and shiny.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip (Ateco #804). Pipe 1-inch flat mounds 1 inch apart onto parchment-lined baking sheets, pressing down any peaks with a dampened finger. Tap each baking sheet on work surface to release trapped air in batter. Let stand 15 minutes.
Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 12 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees. Let macarons cool on baking sheets 3 minutes, then peel off parchment and transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
Meanwhile, place chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir until melted and completely smooth. Remove bowl from heat. Sandwich flat sides of 2 macarons with 1/4 teaspoon melted white chocolate. Repeat with remaining macarons and chocolate. Let set in refrigerator 5 minutes, then return to room temperature before serving.