Soooooo I made some Birthday Macarons for my good friend Sonia. Because our friendship is characterised by laughter, fun and whimsy, I thought that these Birthday Macarons with Vanilla Sprinkles Buttercream would be the best way to reflect this. Macarons were the perfect present for someone who was gluten intolerant and the added confetti sprinkles on top made them quite the celebration treat, don’t you think?
As a child I loved fairy bread and often upped the ration of sprinkles to bread X infinity. As you do… because sprinkles are not only cutely colourful but they make you feel happy! This buttercream was reminiscent of those delicious memories and, while the sprinkles don’t actually add much to the taste, they definitely add to the aesthetic and there is a richness of those recalled memories. After I had decided to put confetti sprinkles on top of my vanilla macarons, I thought I may as well go all the way and mix some into my vanilla buttercream. How whimsical!
Just two tablespoons are all you need, although i’m not going to hold it against you if you want to add more!
at first the buttercream is quite crunchy because of the sprinkles, but after a day they absorb some of the moisture of the buttercream and the texture becomes much more soft. Thats if you can wait a whole day to scoff these babies.
Go on, I dare you.
these ones got packaged up into a pretty box for the birthday girl
and these ones got stacked on a pretty glass stand.
Love those macarons!
So, my lovelies, what birthday treats do you like to eat? Don’t you just think that everything tastes better with sprinkles?
p.s. that was a rhetorical question, there won’t be anyone answering ‘no’ to that one. I freakin hope.
Macaron Recipe – from Zumbo
300g almond meal
300g icing sugar
110g egg whites
300g caster sugar
2g powdered egg whites
110g egg whites
sprinkles to go on top of half of the macarons
1. Combine almond meal and icing sugar in a large bowl. Sieve the mixture thoroughly at least twice.
2. Put the egg whites into the bowl of an electric mixer with the whisk attachment
3. Put the caster sugar and water into a small saucepan and place over a low heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved
4. Once the sugar has dissolved, increase the heat until the mixture is boiling and reaches 118 degrees celsius
5. When the sugar syrup is close to the required temperature, place the powdered egg whites into the mixer bowl with the real egg whites and mix until frothy
6. When the sugar syrup is at the required temperature, pour the sugar syrup in a slow and steady stream down the inside of the mixer bowl while the machine is still mixing. Turn the speed up to high and mix for about 8 minutes (or until the mix has gone from very hot to just warm)
7. Stir the extra egg whites into the sieved almond and icing sugar mix
8. Add the meringue mixture to the almond mixture and fold through. Once it is all combined, continue to fold until the mixture has loosened and is more ‘lava like’. You don’t need to be gentle here like you would with a normal meringue, the aim is to soften the mixture rather than to keep all the air in it
9. Pipe 4cm circles of mixture onto a baking tray making sure that there is enough space between each macaron as they will spread slightly. Sprinkle a few… sprinkles on top of half of the macaron shells
10. Leave the trays for 30 mins to form a skin on the top. This will be how your macarons gain their ‘feet’ as the skin makes sure that they rise evenly and pop those little feet out the bottom (after 10 mins of resting, turn your oven on to 135 degrees celsius)
11. Place trays in the oven for 16 minutes or until they have a firm outer shell. Remove from the oven and set aside for 2 minutes. Carefully remove one macaron shell from the tray to check if the base is cool and dry. If it is still sticky on the bottom, put the tray back in the oven for another couple of minutes. When they are done, cool them on the trays.
Vanilla Sprinkles Buttercream – Adapted from Raspberri Cupcakes
100g unsalted butter
200g icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
2 tbsp sprinkles
1. whisk butter with an electric mixer until the butter is pale and creamy
2. Add sifted icing sugar and vanilla paste and mix for 5-8 minutes or until the mixture is light and fluffy
3. Add the sprinkles and mix with a spatula until combined
4. Pipe onto the bottom of one macaron half, the sandwich with another one.