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.