Friday, March 18, 2011

Christmas Macarons

I absolutely find Christmas colored treats nasty.  Probably because of the intensity of the colors to the point where it just seems unnatural.  Kind of like drinking that blue slushie.

So, how else can I bring the holiday flavours without the artificial nastiness?  Well, around that time, Meow's FIL brought back from France two macrons books...

Yes, you may hate me now for owning this
LEGEND...wait for it...ARY book.

Unfortunately, Monsieur Herme didn't have anything inspiring, or rather, easy to make in a home kitchen.  However, there was a recipe in the Macarons et Gourmandises book that seemed intriguing, and it involved this:

You've guessed right if you said "spiced wine"!  Though the recipe in the book lets you make a spiced wine jelly.  Well, jelly is kinda slippery and can't exactly be transported, so I figured if I can make it into a buttercream.  Meow's logic goes that if you can put fruit puree and other goopy stuff into a buttercream to flavour it, then this could work.  So, Mr. Meow got to decipher the French because he was about to clobber me over the head for reading it in an awful accent. 

Macarons de Vin Epicee  (Spiced Wine Macarons)
translated from Macarons Gourmands by BonApp

Spiced Wine Jelly

50mL of red wine
1 stick of cinnamon
2 cloves
4 cardamom seeds (black)
200g of sugar
Some agar-agar (vegetarian substitute for gelatin)

  1. Heat up the wine and set it on fire (WEEEEEE!!!).  Once all the alcohol is gone the flames will die, you may want to set it on fire, ahem, flambe it, a second time just to be sure.
  2. Add the spices and sugar and let simmer on low heat for about 20 minutes.
  3. Strain out the spices and add 0.4g of agar for every 100g of wine left.
  4. Let cool and set.
Now you can make your buttercream and add some of this spiced wine jelly to taste.

I also melted some chocolate and drizzled onto the shells to decorate. 

Purdy and tasty. 

On my new Macrons Tree 

 Gift packs for various teachers at school.

Available in gift boxes of 12's ;)

These were just TO DIE FOR!!  I will sure be making them again.

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