BASIC MACARON RECIPE

I have always been a big fan of French Macarons. Maybe it’s because I cannot get over how darn cute they are! Perhaps it is the beautiful colors and the crunchy-chewy texture. Before I tempted to make these, I actually did some research and read so many horror stories of how delicate these babies are. After many attempts, I finally master them. I figure out that all it needs is some patience and loving touch.

colorful macarons

Basic Macarons with Almond Buttercream

Ingredients:

Macaron Shells

100 grams (1 1/8 cup) ground almonds

100-110 grams (3 eggs) egg whites, aged 1 day at room temperature

200 grams (1 1/2 cup) powdered sugar

45 grams (4 tablespoons) granulated sugar

Buttercream filling

5 tbsp. butter, at room temperature

80 grams powdered sugar (1/2 cup)

1 tbsp. almond extract

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Directions:

Grind the almonds in a food processor. Sift to get rid of any large pieces. Mix the powdered sugar together with the ground almonds in a food processor. In a large bowl, whip the egg whites with a mixer. As the egg whites start foaming, add the sugar one tablespoon at a time and continue whipping until the mixture is glossy and stiff. You should be able to hold the bowl upside down without the meringue sliding out.

Fold the dry mixture into the meringue using a spatula. Do not over mix! Put your piping bag in a tall glass and fill your piping bag and pipe the macarons onto baking sheets. The shells will flatten, so do not make them too big. About 1 inch is enough. Let them set for 30 minutes to form a dry skin.

Heat the oven to 150 degrees. Bake for 10-12 minutes in the middle of the oven. Keep a close eye on them the last couple of minutes as they brown easily. Let the shells cool completely before removing them from the baking sheets.

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Fillings:

Add the powdered sugar to the soft, room temperature butter. Beat the two together until fluffy. Add a tablespoon of almond extract and beat a little more until incorporated. I like to be precise, so I pipe the filling and sandwich the macaron shells together. You are now done!

You can use any type of filling you like, my favorites are buttercreams, but you can use ganaches or jams. Macarons can be eaten right away, but if you cannot devour them all in one section, you can put them carefully in a box with an air tight lid and refrigerate them. Enjoy!

keep calm macarons

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CINNAMON SWIRL PROTEIN BREAD

Since we are on a healthy binge… How about a sweet and healthy recipe? I will be showing you how to make this scrumptious cinnamon swirl protein bread. The smell of freshly baked cinnamon bread with a morning black coffee will help start the day. For the indulgence of sweetness that is overflowing with protein. And the best part about it, is that it has fewer calories than your average cupcake. What a win, win situation!

cinnamon swirl protein bread

Ingredients:

1/3 cup Truvia

2 tsp. cinnamon

1 1/2 cups oat flour

2 scoops vanilla whey protein

1 tbsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup Truvia

2 egg whites

1 cup unsweetened almond milk (Almond Breeze)

1 4 oz. jar of baby food applesauce

1/4 cup low sugar vanilla yogurt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 8×8 dish with non-stick spray. In a small bowl combine 1/3 cup Truvia and 2 tsp. cinnamon. Then in a large bowl combine 1 1/2 cups oat flour, 2 scoops vanilla whey protein, 1 tbsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/2 cup Truvia. Whisk all the ingredients and set aside. Now in a medium bowl combine 2 egg whites, 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, 1 4oz. jar of baby food applesauce, and 1/4 cup low sugar vanilla yogurt. Whisk these ingredients together and add it to the large bowl. Pour it in the baking dish and sprinkle with half of the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Draw a knife through the batter to marble. Pour the rest of the cinnamon/sugar mixture on top. Bake for 24-28 min. Let cool completely and cut in squares to serve.

cinnamon swirl protein bread 2

Again, congratulations to Arlene for winning the one month giveaway! I hope you like it. Note to everyone: please do not feel discourage if you did not win the first time. I will be doing more giveaways in the future..

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FRENCH TOAST BACON CUPCAKES WITH MAPLE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

Hello everyone! Sorry I have been behind schedule the last several days. I am in the process of renovating my daughter’s room. I will definitely post pictures up once it is fully completed. Here is a sneak peak of the process:

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However, for today’s post lets talk about a mixture of sweet and savory. I do not know about you guys but I love bacon! Now have you ever tried a bacon cupcake? It is like eating a french toast and a bacon all in one and can be eaten at any time of the day. I believe I saw a similar recipe to this from the Food Network. The sweet and salty flavors all complements itself.

bacon cupcakes

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted then cooled
2 eggs, room temperature
1 tsp maple extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
10-12 slices bacon

Directions:
Cook bacon in a fry pan until fully cooked and crispy. Turn the strips out onto paper towels when done and set aside to cool.  Cut a couple of strips of bacon into 1 inch pieces on a diagonal, to be used as garnish.  Finely chop the remaining bacon. Then, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt into a small bowl. In a large bowl beat together butter, sugar and eggs on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.  Feel free to sub bacon fat for a small portion of the butter.  Add the maple and vanilla extracts.  With the mixer running at medium speed, alternately add in flour mixture (3 additions) and milk (2 additions), starting with the flour mixture; beat until smooth.  Fold in chopped bacon until evenly distributed.
Scoop batter into muffin tin lined with paper cupcake liners. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until passing the toothpick test.  Place on a rack to cool.

Maple Buttercream Frosting:
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
2 sticks butter
4 oz. cream cheese
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 t maple extract
pinch salt

In a bowl with an electric mixer or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy.  Add maple syrup, vanilla, maple extract, and salt, and beat until fully incorporated.  Add confectioner’s sugar, one half cup at a time until reaching desired consistency.  Beat until smooth and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Frost or pipe onto cooled cupcakes.  Garnish with inch-long bacon pieces.

bacon cupcakes

I hope you all enjoy this recipe. I know it might sound kind of odd to add bacon to a dessert, but you will be surprise how delightful it is. If you make these let me know how they turn out and take some photos to share with everyone.
Last thing I would like to mention, I have a surprise for all my followers! YAY!!! I will give you guys more details tomorrow. Please stay tune.

MINT CHOCOLATE CHIP ICE CREAM CUPCAKES

Several months ago we had a pot luck at the house and I made the best cupcakes ever. Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Cupcakes! They were the easiest thing to make and just perfect for any occasion, especially for the summer when you have a BBQ outside with the family. It is perfect to hand out to the guests. I made the cake with chocolate batter and then a scoop of mint chocolate chip ice cream. Purely delightful! Then top it off with some chocolate chips and you got yourself a delicious mint chocolate chip ice cream cupcakes!

I made my batter using Chocolate Cake. You can either buy the store box or make your own chocolate cake from scratch. Either or will do! Then I bought a tub of Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream or any variety ice cream you like. After that, I made my own Whipped Cream Frosting. And there you go… Now you got yourself some delicious cupcakes! Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Cake part: chocolate cake mix (store bought)

Ice Cream: Blue Bell or Ben & Jerry’s Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Whipped Cream Frosting: 1 ½ cups heavy cream, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1/2 cup powdered sugar.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Put cupcake liners into the muffin tins and measure out about 1 Tbsp. of batter into each liner. Bake for about 15 minutes. Do not take the cupcakes out of the pan just yet.

Once cooled, scoop some of your softened ice cream on top of the cake until it reached the top of the liners. Place it in the freezer and freeze until the ice cream is hardened.

While the cupcakes are in the freezer, make the whipped cream frosting. Pour the chilled whipping cream into the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat the cream until soft peaks form. Lightly pour the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and beat until soft peaks form. Do not over beat.

Right before serving top the whipped cream frosting and add the chocolate chips!

ice cream cupcake 2

ice cream cupcake

 We devour it before I could take a picture of the  actual cupcakes. So the only pictures I have is when I took it out of the freezer and when I put whipped cream frosting on top. Sorry! But I do plan to make some soon, so I will definitely post more pictures up soon or maybe do another post on a different ice cream flavor. Thank you for reading!