Thursday, February 23, 2012

MacAttack 27: Salted Peanut Macarons with Chocolate Ganache

Inspiration, I found it for these macarons, in a very special treat we used to have back home as kids, chikki. Its made out of jaggery & peanuts sometimes with cashews, puffed rice, sesame seeds, poppy seeds... the list is pretty much endless. I particularly love the peanut and sesame ones to bits. I remember buying a big chunk for 25 paisa ( a paisa equals 1 ⁄ 100 of an Indian Rupee) during our school lunch breaks and devilishly biting into the hard candy. Mum used to make it for karthigai . She used to make it without any fancy candy thermometer, by simply boiling jaggery & little water to the candy consistency, add the peanuts/puffed rice and sometimes with cardamom. She used to then roll it into a ball while the mixture was still hot (asbestos hands must say) and we would happily snack on them.
Anyway,  the other day I was visiting a friend and she offered me some chikki with coffee and I just couldn't stop eating them. She was polite enough to say that she would box some for me to relish later(and boxed it away instead :-(!!!). That triggered childhood memories.
So when MacSweethearts wanted MacTweeters to create something truly extraordinary, worthy of a special fete, for Macaron Day, with a totally new creation, big or small, savory or sweet, something ready for a party  I instantly knew this flavor combo of peanuts and bitter chocolate ganache would be perfect. Feel free to use milk chocolate if you feel the dark chocolate is too much. I have used salted peanuts for the recipe.

Salted Peanut Macarons with Chocolate Ganache 
Italian Meringue
150g caster sugar
55g egg whites (I used only 50g and it still turned out well)
1g egg white powder
38g water
75g ground peanuts
75g ground almonds
150g icicing sugar
55g egg whites
Method:Pulse the almonds,peanuts and icing sugar in a processor until fine. Sieve twice. Mix one part of the egg whites to this. Meanwhile whisk whites till frothy. Bring the sugar and water to boil and let it reach 115-118 C in a candy thermometer. Add this to the whites and whisking all the while on high as you pour till it form glossy peaks. Mix a part of the whites to the almond mixture gently folding it. Mix in the remaining whites till you get a smooth mixture that forms ribbons when lifted. Do not over-mix as the mixture will turn liquidy and difficult to pipe. Fill a piping bag with the mixture and pipe onto a baking sheet with silpat/ non-stick sheet. Leave the macarons to form a skin for 30 minutes. When you touch them they should not stick to your hand at this point, if they do leave them for some more time. Preheat oven to 140C and bake the macarons for 15-18 min depending on size. They should come off the sheet once cooked. Transfer to wire rack and cool. Pipe desired filling and sandwich the macarons. 
Chocolate Ganache
Dark Chocolate chopped – 100 gms
Heavy Cream – ¼ cup
Heat the cream and whisk in the chocolate and butter until smooth and glossy. 
Using a piping bag, pipe a tiny amount of ganache on the flat side of the macaron, and sandwich with another of the same size. Sandwich them, squeezing gently. Leave to set in fridge for at leasts 24 hours for flavours to work together.


MyFudo™ said...

Excited to try out the dark choco ganache...Drak chocolate is good for me.Thanks for sharing this recipe.

Unknown said...

These look beautiful, I've not made macaroons for so long!

The Mad Hausfrau said...

How could one ever go wrong with a peanut and chocolate combination. These are beautiful!

Jill Colonna said...

Love it! Chocolate peanut? They look and sound delicious. Love the description of the chikki for inspiration!

Unknown said...

Chocolate and peanut is always a winning combination. Your creation looks yummylecious.

Anonymous said...

It's a good idea to try making macs with the ground peanuts--we've never tried it with our ground almonds. But your macs look so good and you are an inspiration!

Anonymous said...

Those look beautiful! Well done!

Deeba PAB said...

What a beautiful combination and such an evocative connect. Takes me back to my days in school where the nuns used to make similar treats for the tuck shop! As I've said before, I must try your Italian meringue recipe ... MUST! You inspire me Arthi. Thank you for bringing these to MacTweets!

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