STRAWBERRY AND PISTACHIO ICE CREAM MACARONS
Strawberries and pistachios are a match made in heaven! As are raspberries and pistachios too! Strawberries are bursting at the farmer’s market lately, and they are literally like candy! I love munching on strawberries after dinner – for my very sweet tooth! They truly satisfy my sweet cravings and they are good for you!
I am partnering for this sponsored blog post with my favorite brand Bob’s Red Mill! They truly have the most wonderful products, always the best quality and there is never a time when I have had any bad experience with them! They have a lovely story of how their company started on their website, and it is one to read! They sell their products through retailers – and you can find them via their Store Finder – on their website.
I love making Macarons – it has been one of my favorite baking projects till date, and I make them often. During the summer, macarons become ice cream macarons, because they are so expensive if you get them from a store! A 2 inch ice cream macaron is sold for $4 at Whole Foods, and why would I pay such money when I know I can make these beauties at home!
You can use store bought ice cream if you prefer, but I really wanted to try out this ice cream flavor with Roasted Strawberries in the Ice cream base, swirled with pistachio ice cream. It is a combination to die for and the ice cream is truly one of the best that I have made so far! Ok I may be over exaggerating there because I do enjoy all my ice cream flavors.
HOW TO MAKE THE ICE CREAM BASE
This is the first time that I used and adapted the recipe from my favorite ice cream shop Salt and Straw’s cookbook ! They use milk powder, xanthan gum and corn syrup to make their ice cream base, which I have never done before. The base is easy to make. Combine the dry ingredients like milk powder, xanthan gum and sugar.
Add it to the warm milk and heavy cream mixture until the sugar dissolves, along with the corn syrup. Add the vanilla extract after it has cooled. The mixture needs to sit overnight in the fridge for upto 24 hours. I have let it sit for 48 hours and it has been ok for me.
I used Bob’s Red Mill Non Fat Dry Milk Powder, and Xanthan Gum in the ice cream base. The xanthan gum prevents the formation of ice crystals, hence making the ice cream creamy and smooth! Especially great if you are making ice creams with oat milk or almond milk etc.
ROASTED STRAWBERRIES AND PISTACHIO SWIRL
Roasted strawberries add a depth of flavor and richness to the ice cream, also removing some of the moisture from the strawberries. Make sure to add the roasted strawberries in the churning ice cream base at the tail end, after removing about a cup of the ice cream for the pistachio swirl.
The pistachio swirl best gets it’s flavor from pistachio cream that I have linked here. Pistachio cream is expensive, and I am sure you can find it cheaper online or in a speciality store. Also a little bit of the cream goes a long way. This recipe calls for 3 tablespoons of the cream, along with chopped pistachios for a bite!
The pistachio swirl looks so pretty, with pops of green in the pale pink ice cream. There is no color in this ice cream and it is a complete flavor explosion!
Make sure to spread the ice cream on a baking tray, so that it is easy to remove the ice cream rounds using a cookie cutter of the same size as the baked macaron shells.
To make the two-toned macarons, you have to know the technique to make the macaron shells well, so that when you try the two-toned macarons, rest of the steps for the macarons is muscle memory.
The ingredients required for making macarons are very simple. There are few of them:
- Almond flour : Always use finely ground almond flour with the skin. Do NOT use almond meal. Because almond meal still has the skin on. This will not work. I use Blue Diamond brand of almond flour for my macarons. The quality is superior and fine as well, perfect for making macarons. I use Bob’s Red Mill Super Fine Almond Flour for all my macaron recipes and they are fantastic!
- Egg whites: Use room temperature egg whites always. You can even use a few day old egg whites. I have tried fresh as well as a few day old egg whites, and it both works. Just bring them to room temperature.
- Granulated Sugar: This is used for making the meringue first. I use the French method of making macarons, so a swiss meringue is required, where you beat the granulated sugar and egg whites till it forms stiff peaks.
- Cream of tartar: This helps in holding the structure of the meringue. Just a pinch is required.
- Confectioner’s sugar: This is mixed along with the almond flour at the beginning to form a fine texture, by blitzing in the food processor to ensure that there are no lumps in the mixture. It needs to be smooth.
- Vanilla extract: I add a bit for good taste in the macaron shells.
HOW TO MAKE 2 COLOR MACARON SHELLS?
Once the almond-confectioner’s sugar mixture is folded into the meringue, I do not fold it all the way through, but just until I cannot see the dry bits of the flour mixture. Then I divide them equally into 2 bowls. Add desired colors to both bowls. Use separate spatulas and mix them individually just like you would normal macarons, in the macaronnage stage, where you fold the batter in one direction and press against the wall of the bowl to remove any air. Repeat in the same direction, until the batter forms a figure 8, when the batter is thrown from 2-3 inches high. The batter should settle in within 10 seconds. That is when you know your batter is ready to pipe.
- Place a plastic wrap on the kitchen counter. Spread one color batter in a long log formation – about 12 inches. Spread the other color touching the first color, at the same length. You want to seal the batter right by placing the plastic over the batter and sealing length wise, then tie the ends together. Place this log in a 16 inch plastic bag fitted with a piping tip. Cut off the end of the plastic wrap so you can pipe the two toned macaron shells onto the baking sheet.
TIPS FOR MAKING FANTASTIC MACARONS:
I have been making macarons for many years now, and each time I learn something new. It is amazing how the learning process never ends. Some tips are as follows:
- Use silicone mats for the macarons. They turn out perfect every single time. I think it is a good investment, and you are not wasting ingredients to make them again, incase they do not turn out properly. I bought mine from Amazon. You get mats specific for macarons so a template is not required in that case.
- Follow the measurements and instructions to the T. Do not skimp, or skip any instructions. I cannot stress this enough!
- Meringue should form a peak that slightly bends. That is when you know your meringue is done.
- Fold the flour into the meringue mixture in one direction. Fold and press against the wall, fold and press against the wall. It is some arm work but that is the key to ensuring the batter is the right consistency.
- Know your oven. Bake times may vary depending upon the oven, shell size etc.
- Do not be in a hurry to remove them off the mat. Let them cool completely, so that they come off nicely.
TIPS FOR PERFECT ICE CREAM MACARONS:
- Use a cookie cutter that can cut through the ice cream that is spread in a baking tray.
- Make sure you match the shells beforehand so that you are not scrambling to find the right fit.
- You have to work through the process fast, as the ice cream will melt.
- Offset spatula is your best friend! Make good use of it to lift the ice cream and place it on the macaron shell.
- Make sure you have a baking tray with parchment paper or silicone mat ready to place the assembled ice cream macaron sandwiches.
If you enjoyed this recipe, please do not forget to tag #thejamlab on Instagram and/or leave a comment on this blog post! Thank you so much for stopping by!
This blog post is sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill. All material and opinions are my own.
STRAWBERRY AND PISTACHIO ICE CREAM MACARONS
- Makes about 10 to 12 ice cream macarons:
- Ice Cream Base:
- 3 tablespoons milk powder ( https://www.bobsredmill.com/non-fat-dry-milk-powder.html )
- ¾ cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (https://www.bobsredmill.com/xanthan-gum.html )
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- 4 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Roasted Strawberries:
- 1 pound strawberries
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- Pistachio Swirl:
- 1 cup churned ice cream base
- 3 tablespoons pistachio cream
- ½ cup coarsely chopped pistachios
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped pistachios
- 2 tablespoons freeze dried strawberries (crush it in your hands just before sprinkling)
- Macaron base:
- 6 ounces confectioner’s sugar
- 5 ounces almond flour
- 4 large(4 ounces) egg whites, room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
- 4 ounces granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon strawberry extract
- ¼ teaspoon pistachio extract
- Americolor Avocado food gel
- Americolor Soft Pink food gel
- ½ cup pistachios, finely ground into a powder
- 1 to 1 ½ cups freeze dried strawberries, finely ground into a powder
- 16 inch piping bag
- ⅓ inch piping tip
- Ice Cream Base:
- In a bowl, combine the granulated sugar, milk powder and xanthan gum, until well combined.
- In a medium saucepan, on medium heat, add the milk and heavy cream. Stir and heat for 2 minutes.
- Add the sugar mixture and the corn syrup. Whisk until sugar dissolves for about 3 more minutes. Let mixture completely cool.
- Add the vanilla extract, stir to mix. Store the mixture in a container and in the fridge overnight, upto 24 hours.
- Roasted Strawberries:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a quarter tray, add the strawberries, and sugar. Mix with a rubber spatula to combine.
- Put the tray in the oven for a total of 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, and let it completely cool.
- Store in a container and in the fridge overnight.
- Making the Ice cream:
- Churn the ice cream in the ice cream maker per the manufacturer’s instructions for about 25 minutes.
- Remove a little over a cup of the ice cream base, and store in the freezer until ready to use.
- Add the roasted strawberries into the ice cream base, and churn to combine for 2 more minutes.
- Spread the mixture into an 8 inch x 12 inch tray using a rubber spatula.
- Store in the freezer.
- For the pistachio swirl: Add pistachio cream and pistachios into the remaining ice cream and mix until combined.
- Using a small rubber spatula, dollop the pistachio ice cream onto the strawberry ice cream. Using an offset spatula, swirl it into the ice cream.
- Sprinkle with the coarsely chopped pistachios and freeze dried strawberries. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the freezer for upto 6 hours to set.
- Macaron base:
- Preheat the oven to 310 degrees. Line baking sheets with the paper templates, and top with the parchment paper, or you could use silpat.
- In a bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse the confectioner's sugar with the almond flour until a fine powder is formed. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl. Using a drum sieve, sift the mixture four times. Set aside.
- To make the meringue: In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until foamy for about 1 to 1 ½ minutes. Gradually add granulated sugar. Once all the sugar is incorporated and the mixture is thick, scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the vanilla extract, and increase the speed to high, whipping until stiff, firm, glossy peaks form for atleast 5 minutes. You can remove and turn the whisk and the meringue should be held at the tip of the whisk.
- To complete the macaronnage step: Sift the almond flour mixture, one-third at a time, over the egg white mixture, and fold using a large spatula until JUST MIXED.
- Now divide the mixture into 2 bowls. Add pink color in one bowl – about 2 drops along with strawberry extract and green color in the other bowl – about 2 drops, along with the pistachio extract.
- Use separate spatulas for each bowl. Now using the pink bowl, using a circular motion in one direction, fold the mixture to incorporate the color. Press the mixture against the bowl to remove any air as you go in a circular motion. Keep repeating this form/action until you can form a figure 8 with the batter. The batter should flow like a smooth ribbon. Do NOT over mix, else your macaron shells will not form well. The consistency should be right. When you form the figure 8 from 2 inches above the batter, the batter should subside and blend with the batter in the bowl within 10 seconds. That is when you know your consistency is correct.
- Repeat this step for the green bowl as well with a separate spatula.
- Place a large plastic wrap on the counter. Add the green batter, length of about 12 inches. Repeat for the pink batter in parallel and touch the green batter. Slowly roll the plastic to tightly wrap it all together and seal the ends.
- Add this roll up into the plastic bag that has the piping tip attached. Make sure the sealed end of the plastic wrap pokes through the piping tip. Cut the tip off for the batter to flow through.
- Trace 2 inch rounds with a pencil on two parchment papers that are an inch apart. Place parchment on the baking sheets, and place the silicone mat on the parchment paper. Pipe rounds within the circle on the parchment-silicone lined baking sheets. Gentle tap each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Do this step atleast 10 times. The batter will spread. Using a toothpick, pop any bubbles that may be on the surface of the macarons and blend the batter such that it smoothes out on the top of the macaron. Let stand at room temperature for 40 minutes atleast. Check for a slight crust to form on the macaron. The macarons should not stick to your finger when lightly touched.
- Bake one sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 17 minutes.
- Allow macarons to cool on the baking sheets for 30 minutes and transfer to a wire rack.
- Macaron Ice cream sandwich assembly:
- In 2 separate plates, add the ground pistachios and ground strawberries. Set aside.
- Remove the ice cream tray from the freezer. Using a round cookie cutter, cut out 10 to 12 ice cream rounds( about 3 inches or depending upon the size of your macaron shell), and place them on a baking tray with parchment paper. You may have to dip the cookie cutter in warm water before cutting out the ice cream.
- Place the tray in the freezer for half an hour to set.
- You will have ice cream leftover that you can store in an airtight container or deli container and store in the freezer to eat later!
- For assembly, take 2 same size macaron shells. Place an ice cream round using an offset spatula, on the flat side of the macaron. Add the same size shell on top of the ice cream, roll it in the pistachios and set it aside.
- Repeat for all the macarons, alternating between the ground strawberries and ground pistachios.
- Store in an airtight container, each ice cream macaron separated by parchment paper, to avoid getting moisture in. You can also add some uncooked rice in the container to absorb moisture.
- You can store upto two weeks!