02 July 2009
Almond Extract - Recipe for Almond Macaroons
Sophie and I have an ongoing discussion with each other about the best macaroons. I like the ones in our local farm shop The Smithy at Baldersby, which have been locally baked. Sophie says these are nowhere near as good as the ones you get down South, which are more of a biscuit and don’t include pastry.
I Googled a recipe and came up with this from one of our great friends, Clarissa Hyman. This comes from her book “The Jewish Kitchen” and it is much closer to what Sophie thinks of as a macaroon. They are called a marunchinos (Sephardic almond macaroons). Clarissa says that in Iraq they change the almond extract for rose water, which also sounds delicious, although a bit less like a macaroon. They are reminiscent of amaretti biscuits but a bit harder, but in any case we wolfed down the lot in abut half an hour.
So to celebrate the fact that we’ve just launched a new extract – Steenbergs natural almond extract and an organic orange blossom water.
Pinch of sea salt
1 Egg white
Almond slivers, to decorate (optional)
Icing sugar for dusting (optional)
1 Preheat the oven to 160oC.
2 Line a baking tin with silicone or rice paper.
3 Process the almonds, sugar and salt in a food processor until finely ground.
4 Add the Steenbergs natural almond extract and egg white and pulse-process until the mixture forms a damp paste.
5 Dampen your hands and form the mixture into small balls. Space a good 2-3cm apart on the baking tray. Press a large almond sliver onto the centre of each macaroon.
6 Bake until lightly coloured, about 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and dust, if wished, with icing sugar.
7 Store in an airtight container.