LAVENDER MACARONS WITH HONEY BUTTERCREAM
Makes about 40 shells, or 20 macarons
For the macarons:
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 Tbsp dried lavender buds
3/4 cup almond meal
2 egg whites
3 Tbsp sugar
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Blend the confectioners sugar, lavender and almond meal in a food processor until fine, then whisk everything into a large bowl.
In the bowl of a mixer, add the egg whites and sugar. Mix until meringue is stiff. Now, add the almond meal mixture.
Use both a folding/turning motion (to incorporate the dry ingredients) and a rubbing/smearing motion, to deflate the meringue against the side of the bowl. You don’t need to be too gentle with the batter. By the time it’s ready, its consistency will be runnier than you’d think, closer to pancake batter than cake batter.
Fill a pastry bag with the batter. You can use a pastry bag with just a coupler, or with a tip. Pipe your shells onto the parchment-paper lined baking sheets, a little more than a quarter in size, spacing them about 1 inch apart.
When you’re done piping, pick up the pan and whack it down hard against your counter. Do this another time, then rotate the pan 90 degrees and do the same thing twice. You might see tiny air bubbles appear on the top of the rounds, a good sign because they could be potentially damaging if buried within the batter. Repeat with the other pan.
Slide the pans into the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, at which point the shells should be able to be cleanly picked off the parchment paper.
Let the shells come to room temperature, then fill your macarons with the honey buttercream (recipe below).
For the honey buttercream:
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 Tbsp honey
In the bowl of a mixer, beat the butter for about 2 minutes. Slowly add the confectioner’s sugar, and whisk until everything is incorporated. Do the same with the honey. Beat another minute or so to get everything well incorporated.