On Friday while Peanut was at school I took the boys raspberry picking. We went to the McBride’s Briar Patch which is the same place we went last year. Since we live in Salt Lake and McBride’s is in Mapleton it’s quite a drive but it’s so much fun and the McBride’s are so nice it’s worth the long trip.
Wingnut had his own little bucket tied around his waist and happily filled it with raspberries. Once he had enough he sat himself down and gleefully ate every last one. Baby Cashew spent most of the time on my back in my carrier and squawked whenever he was ready for me to hand back another berry so he could gobble it up. If he ever got close enough he’d just pick them himself. Needless to say, we are big fans.
I ended up bringing home about 7 pounds of raspberries. I’m not sure what to do with them all but while I was picking I knew I wanted to work at least some of them into macarons somehow. I perused my favorite macaron recipe books but couldn’t find anything that sounded just right so I started looking around at what I had on hand. I happen to have a small bag of Meyer Lemons at the moment and when I saw them it hit me. Raspberry lemonade!
I whipped a batch of Meyer lemon shells together and while they set I mashed together a raspberry filling. It all came together so nicely, I was quite proud of myself for coming up with such a tasty combo.
Can you believe they taste even better than they look!?
Raspberry Lemonade Macarons
For the shells:
- 200 g powdered/confectioners sugar
- 100 g ground almonds (mine still had skins so you can see the brown flecks in the shells but if you don’t want the more rustic look go with slivered or blanched almonds)
- 120-125 g egg whites (about 3 eggs) aged on the counter for at least 24 hours
- pinch of salt
- 40 g granulated sugar
- zest of 1 unwaxed lemon (I used Meyer but if you must you can use a regular lemon)
- 2-3 drops lemon oil (flavoring oil is fine but I used a doTerra food grade oil I had on hand)
- yellow food coloring
- yellow sprinkles (optional)
Sift the powdered sugar and ground almonds together in a bowl and set aside.
Place the egg whites and pinch of salt into a large mixing bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until they become foamy like bubble bath. Add the sugar about a teaspoonful at a time until it is all thoroughly blended. The meringue will become thick and glossy like shaving cream. Add your zest, lemon oil, and yellow food coloring and combine well. Don’t overmix or the meringue will be too dry.
Remove the bowl of meringue from the mixer. Unceremoniously dump the entire bowl of powdered sugar and ground almonds into the meringue and use a rubber scraper to incorporate it a bit. The meringue will deflate a little and that is okay. The stiffness needs to relax a little so it can eventually self-level. Don’t be too rough, though. There still needs to be some lightness to the meringue. Fold the sugar/almond mixture into the meringue until it is well combined. The mixture should melt back into itself after a few seconds when a spoonful is drizzled back into the bowl.
Scoop the shell mixture into a piping bag (I use a big Ziploc for easy cleanup) fitted with a large, plain tip. Pipe small circles onto a parchment-lined jelly roll pan. If you want to add a bit more fluff and frill, you can scatter some sprinkles on the shells at this point. I added some to about half my shells and in the picture above you can see some with and some without. Allow the meringue circles to set for at least 15 minutes (or up to an hour) to form a firm little shell. After it has set it should no longer be sticky.
Preheat the oven to 325*. Bake the shells for 10 minutes, one tray at a time. Allow to cool completely on the tray.
For more detailed step-by-step instructions with lots of pictures you might want to check out this how-to post I did a while ago.
For the filling: Keep in mind, these are rough estimates as I was just making it up as I went along.
- 1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
- 2-3 Tbsp sugar (or more to taste)
- juice of half a lemon
- 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
Place the raspberries, sugar, and lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until the raspberries are soft and easily mashable. Working one small spoonful at a time, scoop some raspberries into a fine mesh strainer that has been placed over a bowl. With a spoon, mash the raspberries against the strainer, reserving the juices in the bowl below. After each spoonful, scrape the good stuff from the underside of the strainer into the bowl and discard the seeds and membranes.
Return all the juice and good pulp to the saucepan and heat until it boils. Scoop cornstarch into a mug or small bowl and make a slurry by whisking in a few spoonfuls of the hot juice. When it is well combined add the slurry to the saucepan and whisk until it becomes thick and jelly-like. Pour the raspberry mixture into a bowl and allow to cool completely in the refrigerator.
When both the shells and the filling are cool, spread a bit of raspberry filling on the bottom side of one macaron shell and sandwich it with another shell. Lick your fingers and enjoy!
They’re a little bit tart, a little bit sweet, and completely melt-in-your-mouth good.