Lavender Honey Macarons

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Given that it is officially Spring tomorrow, I want to share a light, floral dessert recipe with you: Lavender Honey Macarons.  Do you remember these photos?  I used them as my blog header image for a while, but never got around to posting the recipe.

Macarons couldn’t be simpler when it comes to ingredients, but these finicky, dainty little cookies are maddening to execute well.  It takes very little to turn your puffy delectable creations into flat cracked discs. Once you have found your comfort zone, you will have the free reign to be imaginative and explore the different flavor combinations; they’re absolutely endless!

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You can find dried lavender buds for culinary uses in many gourmet shops or even in some well-stocked grocery stores. If it’s still impossible to track down, you can order them online – just get the smallest amount available because a little goes a long way. The infused lavender milk is strong stuff by the way (you want to make a strong infusion so as to add as little liquid to the buttercream as possible), so be really careful when you’re adding the lavender flavoring to the butter mixture or your buttercream may taste like an aromatherapy candle.

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Lavender Honey Macaron

Serves: About 20 assembled macarons

Ingredients

For the macarons:
3.2 oz egg whites, room temperature and preferably aged up to 3 days
2.8 oz lavender sugar (see note below)
5.6 oz confectioners' sugar, sifted
3.2 oz almond meal, sifted
Purple food coloring
For the lavender honey buttercream:
2 tbsps milk or heavy cream
1 tbsp dried lavender buds
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tbsp honey
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

To make the macarons:

Place the egg whites in the bowl of stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beat the egg whites until they begin to foam, about 1 minute. Slowly add the granulated sugar to the egg whites while the mixer is set on medium speed. Continue to whip the egg whites until stiff peaks have formed. The egg whites should be thick and glossy (you should be able to hold the bowl upside down without the whites falling out).

Add the sifted almond meal, confectioners’ sugar, and food coloring to the whipped egg whites. Using a spatula, fold the mixture into the egg whites until it has the consistency of molten lava. To test, scoop up a spoonful of batter with a spatula and drop it back into the mix; it should flatten and disappear into the batter in about 15 seconds or so. If it doesn’t, continue folding the mixture. It should take about 50-60 strokes for the batter to reach the right consistency.

Transfer the mixture to a piping bag fitted with large round tip, and pipe small rounds onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper with a template underneath. Start The rounds should be no larger than 2 inch in diameter with at least 1/2 inch of space between.

Gently tap the bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air, then let the macarons dry for 30 minutes until a skin is formed on the surface.

Place the macarons in a 350F oven and bake for about 10-12 minutes until the shells harden.

Let the macarons cool completely on the baking sheets.

To make the filling:

In a small bowl, combine milk and dried lavender. Cover with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours. Using a strainer, strain the infused milk to remove the lavender. Set aside.

Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter until smooth. Add honey, and gradually add confectioners' sugar, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.

Add infused milk, one teaspoon at a time until you reach the desired flavor and consistency, and beat until light and fluffy.

To assemble, match the macaron shells in pairs. Pipe or spread a small round of buttercream (about half a teaspoon) on the flat side of a macaron shell and sandwich together with a matching macaron shell. Repeat with the remaining macarons.

Notes

*To make lavender sugar, combine 1 cup of granulated sugar with 1 tablespoon of dried lavender in a clean glass jar. Cover and let the sugar rest for a day in room temperature. Shake the jar occasionally to distribute the lavender oils in the sugar.

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Comments

  1. Danielle says:

    They look beautiful! Macarons are such impressive desserts, I really need to learn how to make them

  2. These macaroons look perfect for spring, thanks for posting.

  3. Mary Beth says:

    I’m going to make these! I have my egg whites aging now. Did you put the lavender sugar in a food processor to break the buds up? Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    • Glad to hear! I usually pass the lavender sugar mixture through a sieve and get rid of the lavender. If you want stronger lavender flavors, you can break them up in the food processor. A plain ‘ole mortar and pestle should also do the trick :)

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