Ginger Spice Macarons

Take a look at my swirly pumpkin cheesecake from the previous post. Isn't she lovely? For the batter I had to beat cream cheese with nutmeg and crystallized ginger and as I was polishing away ahem taste testing this I thought - this would make an incredibly awesome macaron filling. And I was right! So here is my discovery- that I just couldn't wait to share with you all- delicious cream cheese ginger spice filled macarons! 
Unfortunately I ran out of cream cheese and time to fill the rest of my macarons, which are as you can see shamefully lacking feet. But feet or no feet I still think macs taste awesome. This time I used Helene's recipe on the recommendation of the very talented foodieblogger Ria who I had the good fortune to meet for a short bit last week during her visit to California. ( More on that and her awesome almond cookies later when she posts the recipe- they were really good and are definitely worth waiting for!)
First check these out!

While my first batch had no feet at all, for the second batch, I lowered the oven temperature to 275 and also placed two large cake tins directly underneath my cookie sheet ( tripling the cookie tray would be what I was trying to achieve but unfortunately I only own one non-heavy duty professional baker type cookie sheet) This seemed to help and looking in the oven window I saw this:

Could they be? Yes they are! Glorious little  ruffles on the underside of my macs! Those longed for, tiny little feet! However in my excitement I opened the oven door too soon so these had cracked, undercooked shells that gave me a broken heart :(  Never mind I have 6 egg whites aging on my counter waiting for my next macattempt! I will definitely be trying Helene's recipe again.

Ginger Spice Macarons

For my awesome Ginger Spice cream cheese filling:
  • Cream cheese- 8 ounces softened ( I used one block of the Philadelphia brand) 
  • Sugar: 1/4 cup or more depending on sweet tooth
  • Nutmeg powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Crystallized ginger: 1/4 cup ( shredded in your food processor) 
In your food processor or using a stick blender ( Like I did) shred the ginger along with the sugar. Now add the cream cheese and nutmed and blend until smooth and combined.
Let it harden in the fridge for about 30 mins and then spoon or pipe onto your macaron and sandwich with another macaron shell.

For the shells:
Recipe Source: Adapted from Helene from her blog Tartlettle here as well as notes from her classes kindly shared by bellalimento from here

90 gr egg whites (roughly 3 egg whites)
25 gr to 50gr (2 Tb to 1/4 cup) granulated sugar
200 gr ( 1.5 cups + 2Tb) powdered sugar
110 gr almonds ( 3/4 cup) (slivered, blanched, sliced, whatever you like)
Separate the whites from the yolks and place the whites in a lean bowl 48 hrs or atleast 24 hours before you make the macarons. Leave the whites at room temp, uncovered or loosely covered with a towel at least 24 hrs. Refrigerate after that if desired. You can use eggs that have been “aging” for up to 5 days. This helps the water to evaporate and is important for the right texture and for achieving those feet. Am sure you can skip this step if you arent aiming for perfection. They taste about the same. Also don't worry about old egg whites killing you. The germies get killed at the temperatures were going to bake them at. 
If you are still queasy or just in a hurry you can skip the aging and microwave the egg whites for two short 10 second periods, stirring in between each period. Careful! don't overdo this and cook the eggs! if you do please start over with fresh eggs and reducing the time. 
Prepare the macarons:
Place the powdered sugar and almonds in a food processor and give them a good pulse until the nuts are finely ground. Sift a couple of time to remove bits and pieces. Regrind if necessary. You can also use a coffee grinder for the nuts or you could use store bought almond meal like I did from Trader Joes. But don't forget to sift, sift and sift again.
Once your nuts and powdered sugar are mixed together, rub them in between your fingertips to break the bigger pieces.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites to a foam, (think bubble bath foam) gradually add the granulated sugar until you obtain a glossy meringue (think shaving cream). Do not overbeat your meringue or it will be too dry.
Add the nuts and powdered sugar to the meringue, give it a quick fold to break some of the air and then fold the mass carefully until you obtain a batter that falls back on itself after counting to 10. Give quick strokes at first to break the mass and slow down. The whole process should not take more than 50 strokes. Test a small amount on a plate: if the tops flattens on its own you are good to go. If there is a small beak, give the batter a couple of turns. If you overfold the batter will become too runny so be very careful.
Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip (Ateco #807 or #809) with the batter and pipe small rounds (1.5 inches in diameter) onto parchment paper or silicone mats lined baking sheets.I used my spritz cookie gun instead with the icing tips which I personally find easier to use rather than the frustrating double-ended pastry bag. I also found this macaron template/stencil very useful- just print it out, slide it under your baking sheet, pipe out the macarons and then remember to slide it out and remove before putting them in the oven, else you'll have a nice flame.
Now lift the tray up and gently let fall, so that the underside of the tray hits your kitchen counter, to let air bubbles escape. No, I don't want you to throw macaron batter all over your kitchen :P
Let the macarons sit out for 30 minutes to an hour to harden their shells a bit. 
If using convection: preheat the oven to 280F. If using regular electric or gas, preheat the oven to 300F ( I reduced to 275F) . When ready, bake for 18 to 20 minutes, depending on their size. Let cool.
Am sending my delicious fall inspired macarons to this months Macattack at the mactweets blog hosted by the awesome Deeba and Jamie.

For more macaron tips see my post with tips from my macaron classes
Obsessed much? want more? Here is a very useful document from Helene of Tartlette's feature on macarons in Dessert Magazine which she's linked on her awesome blog


  1. Your ginger flavor rocks. I especially love the cream cheese filling.

  2. Brilliant minds think alike--we made Gingy Macs, too, for MacAttack #13. Congrats on getting feet on your macs. May all your future mac-baking be as successful!

  3. Thanks for stopping by again Lora! I look forward to your comments :) yes cream cheese and crystallized ginger turned out to be a match made in Heaven. Who knew!
    @ Cookery: Gingy macs are definitely brilliant! oh and your little turkey cookies are sooo crazy cute!

  4. I'm sorry they cracked...but they are beautiful in any case. Wonderful fall flavours too. Thank you for joining us at MacTweets!

  5. I have to say that we've all experienced bad and feetless macs but I'll agree with you that ugly or not, they taste fabulous! But your second batch is perfect! Beautiful and full of Autumn flavor! Excellent play on the Mactweets theme and can't wait to see what you do with the next one!

  6. Thanks for your support and macguidance Deeba and Jamie! I love having you'll here for a change since I'm always over at your blogs! You'll are seriously inspirational!

  7. Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn't show up. Grrrr... well I'm not
    writing all that over again. Anyhow, just wanted to say wonderful blog!

    Feel free to surf to my blog - acoustic guitar a chord


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