When I found myself with several egg whites waiting after a recipe I decided I would let them age a bit and try to make some macarons again. Since I had good success with Aran's recipe for Chocolate Macarons last time I decided to try that again. While I am glad that I got the 'feet' I should have, I think that perhaps I let the macarons dry out a bit too much this time (I couldn't get back to the kitchen to get them baking after I piped them for about 2 hours - yipes!). Anyway, they spread a bit but were still quite tasty.
This time I substituted some of the almond meal with ground up peanuts (instead of hazelnuts like I did in the first macarons I made). I then made a creamy milk chocolate ganache and whipped in a good amount of powdered sugar and peanut butter. The combination was heavenly and fun to make.
To get a better result with piping my macarons the same size this time, I downloaded and printed the great template that Helen at Tartelette talked about. It worked perfectly and made my job so much easier. The template was created by Helena at MooseAbout and my thanks go out to her for putting this together (and making it so darn cute!). (FYI - apparently Helena's site is under redesign, so I can't show you the template right now, but it is cute!)
Chocolate Peanut Macarons
SOURCE: Adapted from Aran at Cannelle et Vanille
100 grams egg whites
25 grams sugar
225 grams powdered sugar
100 grams almond flour
25 grams finely ground roasted peanuts
15 grams cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
Separate the egg whites at least 24 hours prior and even let them sit at room temperature for a few hours before starting to make the macarons. This will help them get rid of some moisture and become more acidic, which will help form a stable meringue.
Whip the egg whites until they are almost fully whipped. Sprinkle in the sugar while still mixing. Continue to whip to a full meringue.
Sift the powdered sugar, salt, almond flour, ground peanuts and cocoa powder into a bowl. Add the meringue into the dry ingredients and fold until a shiny mass is formed. We want it to spread a bit but not too much.
Let the macarons dry at room temperature for 20 minutes or so. Bake them in a 300F for about 8 minutes. Rotate the sheetpan and bake for another 8 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Ganache
3 oz milk chocolate
2 Tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup powdered sugar (or a little more if needed)
Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Heat the heavy cream to a boil and pour over the chocolate. Let sit for 30 seconds, then stir gently to melt the chocolate. Allow the chocolate to cool to room temperature. Add the remaining ingredients and beat the mixture well to combine to thick, pipeable mixture. Stir until incorporated and the ganache forms. Let it harden a bit until it is pipeable and fill the macarons.