Almond Macarons Recipe & Video Tutorial

By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2018-2019

Almond is a classic flavor and the filling also contains almond flour. Using a high quality almond extract will make the flavor even richer. These lovely almond macarons will brighten any occasion!

This recipe is from my book Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method.

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INGREDIENTS:

160 grams powdered sugar, sift with almond flour
160 grams almond flour, sift with powdered sugar
150 grams egg whites
180 grams confectioners’ sugar, sieved
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder
Blue food color gel

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 300°F.
Sift the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar into a bowl. Stir in the arrowroot powder and set aside.
Put a template on a baking sheet and place a silicone mat or parchment paper over it. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add egg whites and confectioners’ sugar. Whisk until well combined.
Place bowl over steaming pot with just enough water, as you don’t want the water touching the bowl. Heat on medium heat until it steams. Test to make sure it’s hot enough by sticking your clean finger in the meringue near the center of the bowl. If using a candy thermometer the temperature should be about 130 F.
Remove from heat and place bowl back onto stand mixer. Add the cream of tartar.
Whisk on medium to high speed until firm peaks form. Egg whites should be glossy and if you flip the bowl upside down, nothing will come out.
Add food coloring and whisk until the color is incorporated.
Remove the whisk and add the paddle attachment [if using one].
Add the presifted almond flour and confectioners’ sugar mixture and food coloring.
Turn mixer to low or medium speed and mix for up to 10 seconds. If that doesn’t mix the batter thoroughly, mix for another 10 seconds. Turn off mixer and with your spatula, run it around the sides and bottom of bowl to make sure all the dry ingredients are incorporated.
Test for the ribbon stage. When you lift your spatula above the bowl, the batter should fall back to the bowl as one continuous stream and create a ribbon pattern.
Pour batter into a large pastry bag fitted with a large round tip.
Pipe onto the silicone or parchment covered baking sheets.
When finished with each sheet, bang baking sheet on counter to remove air bubbles. If you see any air bubbles, pop them with a toothpick.
Let shells rest on a flat surface in a cool, dry area for about 30 minutes. The surface will change from glossy to matte. To make sure they’re done, gently touch the edge of one with your finger. There should be no trace of batter on your finger.
Bake for 15-20 minutes. This will vary depending on your oven. Carefully monitor the baking process and check your oven thermometer. After 8 minutes, rotate the tray to ensure even baking.
Macarons are done when you peel back the mat or parchment paper and the shells don’t stick.
Remove from oven and slide the parchment or silicone mat onto a cooling rack.
Place macaron shells on a wax paper covered baking sheet or tray for filling.
Using an edible brown food color gel pen, carefully draw spirals on each shell.
When the shells are dry, match similar sized shells together. Pipe the filling on the flat side of one shell and gently place the second shell on top.

Almond Macaron Filling

This is a European type of filling as it contains almond flour for a thickener and for the taste and texture. For more texture, you can use unblanched almond flour.

INGREDIENTS:

125 grams [4 ounces] butter, room temperature
86 grams [3 ounces] almond flour [sifting isn’t necessary]
86 grams [3 ounces] confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
1 teaspoon almond extract

INSTRUCTIONS:

In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, whip the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy.
Add the powdered sugar, starting at low speed and gradually changing to medium speed. When thoroughly mixed add the almond flour and whisk until the filling is smooth and creamy.
Add the vanilla bean paste and almond extract.
Scoop into a piping bag, the use of a tip is optional.

Amazon link: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
All other bookstores: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method

Table top with background

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Oatmeal Raisin Cookies with Einkorn Wheat Flour ~ Recipe & Video

By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2018

oatmealraisinstack1There’s one similarity between macarons [which contain almond flour], and oatmeal raisin cookies made with einkorn flour – einkorn flour should be sifted twice. Other than that, these tasty and nutritious cookies are easy to make and can be eaten only a few minutes after they’re out of the oven.

In this recipe, I used both walnuts and pecans. Of course, you can opt for nut-free, use different nuts, or change the raisins to sultanas or even dried cherries/other types of fruit. The cookies shown here are very soft and chewy — and will remain that way for a few days. If they last that long! Einkorn flour is different from the usual all-purpose wheat flour found in grocery stores, because it’s an ancient grain that has NOT been hybridized. It comes from Italy and is high in the antioxidant lutein.

“A Good Gluten?: The gluten in einkorn lacks the high molecular weight proteins that many people can’t digest. If you are sensitive to modern wheat, einkorn can provide a delicious alternative. Please note that einkorn does contain gluten and is therefore not ok for those with Celiac Disease” from the jovial website.

oatmealraisincookie1

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup [1 stick] organic unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup organic virgin coconut oil
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
½ cup raw cane sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract OR vanilla bean paste
1½ cups organic einkorn all-purpose, sifted twice 
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice OR apple pie spice
½ teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans [optional]

Oven temperature: 350 Fahrenheit

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350°Fahrenheit.

Line 2 – 3 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.

In a large bowl or a stand mixer, cream together butter, coconut oil, and sugars.

Add eggs and vanilla and beat well.

Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Mix well.

Using a spatula or a spoon, stir in oats, raisins and nuts.

Drop rounded tablespoonfuls onto parchment paper or silicone mat-covered baking sheets.

Bake for approximately 12 minutes or until golden brown around the edges. 

Cool on a wire rack, or enjoy some of them right away while they’re very soft, chewy and hot!

Learn more about einkorn flour here: https://jovialfoods.com/einkorn/learn-more-about-this-super-nutritious-grain/

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orange spice cupcakes by lisa maliga

Chocolate Orange Spice Cupcakes Recipe & Video Tutorial

By Lisa Maliga
Copyright 2017-2018

This type of cupcake is appealing to those who love a strong citrusy spicy combination. If you’re looking for an autumn, Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas treat, here’s a winning flavor. 

chocolate orange spice cupcake baked by lisa maliga
Chocolate Orange Spice Cupcake

CUPCAKE INGREDIENTS:

1/3 cup dark chocolate, finely chopped [Green & Black’s Maya Gold] [3 oz.]
1/3 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
3/4 cup hot water
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
6 tablespoons virgin coconut oil [3 oz]
2 eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons [fresh] lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla

Makes 12 cupcakes

Oven temperature: 350 Fahrenheit/177 Celsius

DIRECTIONS:

Place the chopped chocolate and cocoa powder in a medium bowl. Pour the hot water over the mixture and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate mixture for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. The rack should be in the center. Line a standard-size muffin pan with liners.

Sift the flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl; set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs thoroughly.

Whisk the virgin coconut oil, eggs, lemon juice and vanilla extract into the cooled chocolate. Add the flour mixture and mix until smooth. DON’T OVERMIX!

Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake until the cupcakes are set and just firm to the touch, 17 – 19 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, and then remove the cupcakes from the pan and place on the wire rack to cool completely.

ORANGE SPICE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

FROSTING INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup [6 oz.] unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar [confectioners’ sugar or icing sugar]
3 Tablespoons heavy cream
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin spice blend*
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 ½ teaspoons orange extract
12 drops orange color

FROSTING DIRECTIONS: 

Beat softened butter on medium speed for about 3-4 minutes until completely smooth and creamy. Add the confectioners’ sugar, cream, vanilla extract, and spices with the mixer running. Increase to high speed and beat for 1 minute.

Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

Green & Black’s Maya Gold chocolate has a spicy orange flavor that pairs beautifully with this frosting. I used it once before as I’d run out of regular dark chocolate and was impressed with the way the flavor came out in the cupcakes even a day after they’d been baked. If you can’t use this particular brand/type of chocolate, that’s okay, use whatever’s available to you. However, if you want it to have an orange spice flavor, add 1/4 teaspoon orange extract and about 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin or apple spice blend to your cupcake batter.

* make your own pumpkin spice blend

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

Amazon Kindle link: Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide

3dBakingCupcakes3

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Cinnamon Roll Macarons Recipe & Video

By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2018

This recipe is from the book Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method

cinnamonrollmacs

CINNAMON ROLL MACARONS RECIPE

For cinnamon lovers. Whether you adore cinnamon during the Christmas season or any time of the year, these sweet and spicy macarons are sure to please.

INGREDIENTS:

160 grams powdered sugar, sift with almond flour
160 grams almond flour, sift with powdered sugar
150 grams egg whites
180 grams confectioners’ sugar, sieved
1 Tablespoon [8 grams] arrowroot powder
1/2 teaspoon [3 grams] cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon [3 grams] ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
Brown edible food color pen

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 300.
Sift almond flour and confectioners’ sugar together into a bowl. Stir in the arrowroot powder and cinnamon, and set aside.
Put a template on a baking sheet and place a silicone mat or parchment paper over it. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add egg whites and confectioners’ sugar. Whisk until well combined.
Place bowl over steaming pot with just enough water, as you don’t want the water touching the bowl. Heat on medium heat until it steams. Test to make sure it’s hot enough by sticking your clean finger in the meringue near the center of the bowl. If using a candy thermometer the temperature should be about 130 F.
Remove from heat and place bowl back onto stand mixer. Add the cream of tartar.
Whisk on medium to high speed until firm peaks form. Egg whites should be glossy and if you flip the bowl upside down, nothing will come out.
Add vanilla bean paste and whisk for a few seconds.
Remove the whisk and add the paddle attachment [if using one].
Add the presifted almond flour and confectioners’ sugar mixture.
Turn mixer to low or medium speed and mix for up to 10 seconds. If that doesn’t mix the batter thoroughly, mix for another 10 seconds. Turn off mixer and with your spatula, run it around the sides and bottom of bowl to make sure all the dry ingredients are incorporated.
Test for the ribbon stage. The batter should fall back to the bowl as one continuous stream and create a ribbon pattern.
Pour batter into a large pastry bag fitted with a large round tip.
Pipe onto the silicone or parchment covered baking sheets.
When finished with each sheet, bang baking sheet on counter to remove air bubbles.
Let shells rest in a cool, dry area for about 30 minutes. To make sure they’re done, gently touch the edge of one with your finger. There should be no trace of batter on your finger.
Bake for 15-20 minutes. This will vary depending on your oven. Carefully monitor the baking process and check your oven thermometer. After 8 minutes, rotate the tray to ensure even baking.
Macarons are done when you peel back the mat or parchment paper and the shells don’t stick.
Remove from oven and slide the parchment or silicone mat onto a cooling rack. 
Place macaron shells on a wax paper covered baking sheet or tray for filling.
Using an edible brown food color gel pen, carefully draw spirals on each shell.
When the shells are dry, match similar sized shells together. Pipe the filling on the flat side of one shell and gently place the second shell on top.

CINNAMON ROLL FILLING

INGREDIENTS:

125 grams [4 ounces] unsalted butter, room temperature
125 grams [4 ounces] cream cheese, room temperature
220 grams [2 cups] confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
30 ml [2 Tablespoons] heavy [double] cream
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

INSTRUCTIONS:

In the bowl of a mixer/stand mixer, mix butter and cream cheese until well blended. Add the vanilla, heavy cream, and cinnamon. Continue to blend until well incorporated. Add the sugar and mix on high speed for a few minutes. Spoon into a piping bag and fill your macarons.

cinnamonrollmacarons2

Want to learn more about baking macarons? 

Amazon link: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
PAPERBACK LINK:Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Amazon UK:Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
PAPERBACK LINK:Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
B&N/Nook:Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
iTunes:Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Kobo: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Smashwords: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method

(14)swiss (1)

Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method ~ Excerpt

(12)swiss (1)By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2018

From the INTRODUCTION

Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method covers the simple techniques you’ll need along with the best type of equipment you should have to bake lovely macarons. You’ll also learn how the weather makes a difference, why you should invest in a digital kitchen scale and oven thermometer. I’ve spent lots of time, money, and hard work to get these recipes right. They are all unique and some are more suited to those who like their macarons sweet and others who enjoy their macarons with a little less sugar and are more classically flavored.

The Swiss method is for any level of baker providing you carefully read each recipe thoroughly along with the helpful suggestions.

When you have the ingredients weighed and sifted, the egg whites separated, and the baking trays lined, it’s time to bake macarons, Swiss style.

Official Description:

Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method

3DBakingSwisscover2This unique cookbook is designed for bakers of all levels. Follow each carefully detailed recipe and bake stunning macarons that will impress any dessert lover.

Helpful information includes the best ingredients and equipment to stock your kitchen, resources, tips and troubleshooting, plus the easy macaronage technique that will save you time and energy.

With a photo of each recipe, Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method, offers everything you need to bake beautiful and delicious macarons. It features 20+ new tried-and-tested macaron recipes.

Some of the flavors include Minty Chocolate, Speculoos [Cookie Butter], Raspberry Cheesecake, and Apple Spice macarons.

Available at these fine bookstores.

Amazon link: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
PAPERBACK LINK: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Amazon UK:
 Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
PAPERBACK LINK: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
B&N/Nook:
 Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
iTunes: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Kobo: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method
Smashwords: Baking Macarons: The Swiss Meringue Method

baking macarons the swiss meringue method cookie butter speculoos macarons
Speculoos [Cookie Butter} Swiss Macarons
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Book Trailer

Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide–An Excerpt

Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide

by Lisa Maliga, copyright 2017=2019

My second cookbook has just been released after months of testing various chocolate cupcake and brownie recipes. It was so much fun baking these sweet treats and learning more cupcake decorating techniques. For example, I tried the swirl method and was able to come up with this:

peppermintswirlcupcakes2
Peppermint Swirl Cupcakes

I’ve also learned how to make my own sparkling sugar and the various ways to core cupcakes. So, if you love chocolate goodness, keep on reading!

Chapter 1 ~ About the Ingredients

Your cupcakes and brownies can look and taste better than any found in a bakery. What you put into your batch of cupcakes is up to you and your budget. Are fresh eggs and butter available to you? I’ve been able to use farm fresh eggs in many of my batches of cupcakes and brownies. Those hens are free ranging and while kept in a coop at night, during the day they amble around several acres of pasture and eat natural food from the ground as well as organic chicken feed.

Use whatever ingredients you have in your pantry, cupboards and refrigerator for your first batches of brownies and/or cupcakes. Don’t invest a lot of money in ingredients or equipment if you only plan to make the occasional dessert. But once you make brownies and cupcakes from scratch, get creative and try new brands of chocolate, butter, or any of the other ingredients to learn if you can taste a difference. Oftentimes you’ll find some sweet [I couldn’t resist that pun] deals on the ingredients at your grocery store so you’ll spend less money on finding out what you like to add to your chocolaty desserts. Baking isn’t just science–it’s also art.

As the recipes in this book are all about using the most natural ingredients, as well as the best tasting, virgin coconut oil is recommended. This tropical oil is easier to use in oil form rather than solid. Coconut oil is coconut butter at temperatures below 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on the weather, I can let it sit in the sun to melt or if it’s hot enough then measuring it is always easier. Virgin coconut oil gives cupcakes natural moisture and you won’t taste the extra coconut.

Amazon Kindle: Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide

Amazon Kindle UK: Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide

Paperback edition: Baking Chocolate Cupcakes and Brownies: A Beginner’s Guide

3DBakingcupcakes book&Phone

Chocolate Espresso Ganache Filling Recipe

By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2017

I used to think that a ganache was something fancy that went on top of a cake or some type of fancy pastry. I knew it was made from chocolate, but that’s about all. If you’ve never made this lovely and decadent macaron filling, don’t worry, it’s very easy to make. You only need a few ingredients but you should get the best type of chocolate that you find appealing. For practice, use standard dark chocolate morsels that you may have in your pantry, but if you’re a chocoholic, add a 70% cacao content dark chocolate.

chocolatemintganache
Chocolate ganache just before going into a pastry bag

Chocolate Espresso Ganache Filling

Ingredients:

4 ounces heavy cream [120 grams]
4 ounces finely chopped dark chocolate [120 grams]
½ teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
½ teaspoon instant espresso

Put cream in microwave for about one minute until hot — NOT boiling. Pour over chocolate chunks. When melted add instant coffee and vanilla and whisk well until smooth. Let sit at room temperature for at least four hours or overnight. Cover with plastic wrap. Just before getting ready to use a spatula to scoop the ganache into a piping bag with large round tip.

This is a simple recipe to make and it will really perk up your macaron shells. The touch of espresso gives the chocolate more zing! I used my favorite brand of chocolate: Valrhona.

chocolateganacheespesso2

Adding instant espresso to chocolate chunks

chocolateganachecream2

Pour in your cream and vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

chocolateganache
Whisk ingredients together until you have a shiny chocolate ganache!
orangegreenmacarons
Orange & chocolate mint macarons

Baking French Macarons A Beginner’s Guide

This recipe can be found in my book Baking French Macarons: A Beginner’s Guide. Available in eBook [free with a Kindle Unlimited subscription] and paperback formats.