130g superfine almond flour
130g powdered sugar
90-100g egg whites, room temperature
1/8 tsp cream of tartar - optional
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
90g granulated sugar
gel food coloring - (I used Red Red)
Find and print heart shape templates online or hand draw on paper.
Place your heart templates under your silicone mat.
Sift almond flour and powdered sugar onto separate parchment paper and set aside.
Pour room temperature egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk and mix on a low/medium speed until the surface of the egg whites is covered in small bubbles. Add cream of tartar and salt, continue to mix until it reaches a frothy stage.
Slowly add granulated sugar into the eggs and mix on a medium speed in 1-2 tbsp increments.
Keep mixing until white and glossy. Add in gel food coloring and extract at this point.
Increase the mixing speed to a medium-high speed, until stiff, glossy peaks form.
Fold the dry ingredients into the meringue in two additions using a circular motion until a thick ribbon of batter runs off the spatula when it is lifted. Be careful not to over-mix the batter! It will take time and experience to get this just right.
Pour the batter into a large piping bag fitted with 1/2-inch piping tip onto the prepared baking sheets, using template to create heart shape. I use silicone mats, placed on upside down baking sheets.
Bang the pans firmly on the counter a few times to release air bubbles. Pop any remaining air bubbles that come to the surface with a toothpick.
Let the macarons rest for 20-60 minutes to develop a skin. The macarons should look matte once the skin has formed.
As the macarons rest, preheat your oven to 300 F. Every oven is different, and you may need to set your temp higher or lower.
Bake one tray of macarons at a time on the middle rack of your oven for 16-18 minutes, until the macarons do not wiggle when you test them.
Remove from the oven and let the macarons cool on the pan for about 15 minutes. Gently peel them off of the silicon mat and set aside.
Hot Cocoa Buttercream
5 tbsp butter, room temp
1/3 cup hot cocoa mix
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
1-2 tbsp milk, if needed
Cream butter until light and fluffy.
Add hot cocoa, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Combine thoroughly.
Add milk, if needed, to create desired consistency.