I’m like a kid at Christmas… It’s Macaron Day! Just about my favorite food ever, (see the photo here of our wedding favors? The best gift ever, IMO!) a simple vanilla macaron, when done right, is the pinnacle of desserts. Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery in Yountville takes the prize—these little babies are the stuff dreams are made of. The recipe calls for a whole lotta butter, so I decided to see how my beloved macarons would turn out with a little coconut oil spin on the buttercream. They came out fantastic, just keep them refrigerated right up until you eat them.
Coconut Oil Macarons, adapted from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon cookbook:
5 1/4 cups of almond flour
5 cups of confectioner’s sugar
1 1/4 cups of large egg whites (7-9 eggs)
2 vanilla beans, scraped of the seeds
Pinch of Cream of Tartar
Combine the almond flour and sugar and set aside.
Whip the egg whites until they form soft peaks then add a pinch of cream of tartar and continue to whip until they hold stiff peaks. Fold in the vanilla bean seeds and 1/4 of the flour and sugar until it comes together. Fold in the rest of the flour and sugar.
With a 1/2″ plain pastry tip, pipe the batter into 2″ circles, at least 1″ apart. Let rest for 1-2 hours until the macaroons form a skin. (Very important!)
Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees, then rotate the baking sheet and continue to bake for 10 more minutes.
Fill with coconut oil “butter”cream:
Adapted from Fine Cooking
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large egg whites
4 oz. (1/2 cup) coconut oil, at room temperature, cut into 4 to 6 pieces
1/4 tsp. good quality vanilla extract (I recommend Penzey’s double strength vanilla)
Pinch of kosher salt
In a small heatproof bowl, whisk the sugar and egg whites. In a 1-quart saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Set the bowl over the simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water) and heat the mixture, whisking occasionally, until hot to the touch, 4 to 6 minutes. It will thin out a bit as the sugar melts.
Remove the bowl from the heat and scrape the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-high speed until the mixture is light, white, and cool to the touch, 4 to 6 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the chunks of coconut oil one at a time. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until the buttercream is smooth, 4 to 5 minutes. Mix in the vanilla and salt.
Make a sandwich out of 2 Bouchon cookies and a spoonful of coconut oil “butter”cream.