Chocolate Orange Macarons (and not macaroons – make no mistake) may seem complicated but fear not. This recipe is easy to make, you just need to focus on your piping to create the perfect shape. But let’s go back one step – what is a macaron? It’s a meringue-based cookie sandwich cookie made with almond flour (not ground almonds), egg whites, sugar and any flavour you desire. Usually filled with buttercream, jam or chocolate ganache, they can mentally transport you to a french patisserie in Paris (although one can buy the real deal at Maison Ladurée all over the world).
Our Chocolate Orange Macarons recipe is easy to make and gluten-free too! Unlike any traditional macarons recipe renowned for being tricky, we have kept the process simple and included tips along the way. The resulting macarons are airy, moist and almost melt in your mouth with every bite. Our Chocolate Orange Macarons are rich, smooth and deliciously chocolaty, with a hint of orange in the chocolate ganache filling. We have used Food Thoughts Dark Chocolate Chips (70% cacao solids), as they are less sweet than milk chocolate and thus result in the ultimate treat.
You can also make these chocolate orange macarons ahead of time. If you are making these in advance, it’s recommended to let them set for 12-24 hours in the fridge in an airtight container; then pop them into your freezer. Take them out a day before serving and let them thaw. Job done
You will need
- FOR THE MACARONS
- 120g almond flour
- 20g Food Thoughts Organic Cocoa Powder
- 150g egg whites (4 large eggs)
- 75g caster sugar
- 220g icing sugar
- FOR THE FILLING
- 150g Food Thoughts Luxury Dark Chocolate Chips
- 150ml double cream
- 1/2 tsp Intense orange extract (or to taste)
- TOPPING (optional)
- Melted Food Thoughts Dark Chocolate Chips and dehydrated orange pieces
FOR THE MACARONS: Line 2 baking trays with baking paper - dot the underside of the paper in the four corners with olive oil to hold in place. Draw circles (about 3cm in diameter) onto the paper as these will act as a guide to create uniform sizes for the macarons. You can also use a macaron mat.
Sieve the almond flour, icing sugar and Food Thoughts Organic Cocoa Powder together to make sure all the dry ingredients are fine (you can also use a food processor to pulse and then sieve). It is essential that there are no lumps.
Put the egg whites and caster sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk until the egg whites form stiff peaks and form a clump on the whisk. Fold in, and thoroughly incorporate, the dry ingredients into the egg whites (this will deflate the eggs but this is fine).
Put a round nozzle into a piping bag and then stand the bag nozzle down in a drinking glass. Fill the bag with the macaron mixture then pipe circles of the mixture on the guide. Bang the tray a few times onto a hard surface and you will see the air bubbles from within rise to the surface. Use the tip of a cocktail stick (or similar) to glide over these bubble holes to smooth them over.
It is essential to then 'rest' the macarons for about 30 minutes before cooking them. They will form a slight skin and will no longer be sticky to the touch. Whilst macarons are resting, preheat the oven to 150C / 300F.
Place the piped tray/s of macarons into the middle of the oven for 15 minutes but rotate the tray once mid-way through. Remove from the oven and completely cool.
CHOCOLATE ORANGE GANACHE: Place the cream in a small saucepan or microwaveable jug and bring to the boil. Add the dark chocolate chips and stir until completely melted. Add the orange essence. Leave the ganache to cool until it is a spreadable consistency that allows it to be piped.
Line up all the macron shells in pairs (try to match similar size and shape). Put the ganache in a piping bag and pipe it onto one of the macaron (flat side). Once piped, place another macaron on top. Repeat until all are complete.
TOPPING: You can finish the macarons by dipping the edges in melted chocolate and / or drizzling them.