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5 from 2 votes

Cherry Cheesecake Macarons

Using the Italian Method (using a boiled sugar syrup) versus the French Method (fiddling with confectioners sugar, I baked up lovely light cookies, crisp on the outside, and tender on the inside. This method doesn’t need aging of egg whites or stressing over the macaron batter getting just the right texture.
This Cherry Cheesecake Macaron puts a light cream cheese flavored buttercream frosting, with a dollop of homemade sour cherry jam, in the middle of the sweet cookie sandwich. They were so tasty, we made a blueberry cheesecake version too!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Servings: 48 macaron shells, or 24 'sandwiches'

Ingredients

For the Macarons

  • 90 grams almond flour
  • 90 grams confectioners sugar
  • 75 grams of egg whites at room temperature. (Separated into two portions, 35g & 40g)
  • 100 grams granulated sugar
  • 70 grams water
  • 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar to keep the egg whites perky
  • 4-5 drops of gel based food coloring

For the Frosting

  • 1 stick of butter at room temperature
  • 2 ounces of cream cheese at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar sifted
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup sour cherry jam or blueberry jam

Instructions

To Make the Macarons

  • Wipe down the bowl & whisk attachment of your mixer with white vinegar to remove any traces of grease or food particles.
  • Prepare two baking sheets with silpats, or parchment paper traced with circles the diameter you would like your macarons to measure.
  • Take a large piping bag, fitted with a #10 circular Wilton tip, and tuck into a large glass (this makes it easier to load).
  • Place a fine mesh sieve over a large mixing bowl, and pour the almond flour & confectioners sugar into it. Gently shake to sift the almond flour and confectioners sugar. Discard any pieces of ground almonds left in the sieve.
  • Next, add the 35 grams of egg whites to the mix. Gently fold until with a rubber spatula until incorporated. It should look like a paste when thoroughly mixed.
  • Add your food coloring at this point, and mix until the color is even.
  • In a small saucepot, add the granulated sugar and water. Place over high heat and mix. You will use a candy thermometer (or thermapen, in my case) to bring the sugar syrup to 240F.
  • Once the pot is heating, you can begin to whip the remaining portion of egg whites. Add the 40 grams of eggs whites to a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, and using the whisk attachment (or handheld mixer), whip on ‘high’ until you get foamy soft peaks. This takes about 6 minutes for me. Add the Cream of Tartar to stabilize the eggs.
  • If the eggs reach a soft peak before the sugar syrup reaches 240F, lower the speed on the whisk, and just keep the egg whites moving a bit.
  • Once the sugar syrup has reached 240F on your themomter (there will suddenly be an even layer of large, slower moving, bubbles throughout the liquid surface, especially as compared to a regular water boil. The mixture will also appear more viscous.
  • Lower the speed on your mixer to medium, and pour the sugar syrup slowly and carefully down the edge of the mixer bowl, to mix it into the egg whites. Once poured, raise the speed to high, and whisk the egg whites/sugar mix until you get stiff peaks.
  • Once you have whipped the egg whites to a shiny stiff peak, you will begin to fold the meringue into the bowl with the almond flour paste:
  • In thirds, add the meringue and fold completely into the almond paste. Scoop around the bowl and fold over, occasionally scraping the bottom and center of the bowl over on itself.
  • Incorporate each third before adding the next.
  • Once mixed, scoop the batter into the pastry bag, and twist the top of the bag closed.
  • Hovering over the cookie sheets, pipe the macaron batter evenly and carefully into circles. To do this, squeeze the batter down onto the center of each circle, while pulling up slightly. The macaron should slightly spread out to fill a circle.
  • After you have piped your cookies, lift the baking sheet up an inch or so, and tap it forcefully 3 or 4 times against your work surface. This will help knock out any air bubbles trapped in the macaron batter.
  • Preheat your oven to 300F.
  • Let the macarons sit on the counter, away from drafts or heat, for about 30 minutes, until the tops are dry and a ‘skin’ has formed (like bread dough). You can test the cookies by touching them (lightly) with your finger; if the dough sticks, they’re not ready yet for baking. (You are creating surface tension across the cookie. This helps the cookie not to crack or rise through the top during baking. Unlike bread, where you slash the top to get that ‘boule’ look, we want the cookies to only have one way to expand – down! That way they rise from the bottom and develop ‘feet’).
  • Once your macarons have rested and formed a skin, place into the hot oven for 12-14 minutes. Watch your macarons to make sure they aren’t browning on top.
  • After baking, remove the pan to a wire rack and let cool *completely* before gently peeling them off the parchment or silpat. They will stick if they’re not cool!
  • Store in a cookie tin lined with parchment.

To Make the Frosting

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, using a whisk attachment, add the butter & cream cheese. Whip until incorporated.
  • Sift the confectioners sugar into a bowl, and on medium speed, add the sugar slowly to the butter/cream cheese in several portions. Occasionally stop the mixer, and scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of milk, the vanilla extract, and salt. Continue to whip on high until the frosting becomes light and fluffy.

To Assemble

  • Match the individual macaron cookies into pairs by size. We’re not robots, so they’re all going to be a little bit different.
  • Portion out your jam, and scoop the buttercream frosting into a piping bag with your desired tip.
  • Taking one cookie, pipe around the outside towards the middle, placing an even amount of frosting on the cookie. Dollop about 1/2 teaspoon of jam in the center of the cookie and carefully sandwich the macaron with its pair.
  • Refrigerate the finished cookies in an airtight Tupperware, ideally for 2 or 3 days before eating. The cookies will soften and the flavors will meld.

Video

Homemade Cherry Cheesecake Macarons! by straighttothehipsbaby on Jumprope.

Notes

Please Note: I have measured the ingredients in grams, versus cups. It is very helpful to measure exactly, using a small kitchen scale. Having a digital meat thermometer or candy thermometer is also recommended for preparing the sugar syrup.