If you decide to simply replace the traditional graham cracker with this wonderful macaron, your guests will still have a very special treat. If you opt to make the smoked ganache as well, then this treat becomes sublime!
Sift almond flour, ground tea, cinnamon and 2-1/2 cups of the sugar together.
Whip the egg whites with the remaining 2-1/2 cups of confectioner’s sugar to stiff peaks.
Drizzle in the molasses and continue to whip until fully incorporated.
Transfer the stiff egg whites to a large bowl and fold in the dry ingredients 1/3 at a time. DO NOT OVERMIX. The batter should be slightly runny, but not too liquid.
Use a pastry bag with a 1/2 inch tip to pipe out 2 inch mounds onto a baking pan prepared with parchment paper or a silpat.
Gently smooth and shape the surface of each mound with your moistened finger or the back of a teaspoon dipped in cold water. Allow them to rest at room temperature until the tops are dry and a skin forms, around 2 hours.
Bake at 325°F for 5 minutes, turn and bake further until they just begin to brown, another 5 to 8 minutes or so.
Cool completely before removing from the paper or silpat. They may be stored in an airtight container up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 weeks.
Make the Smoked Ganache
At L’Espalier they cold smoke the chocolate for a couple of hours, but you will find the cream infused with Lapsang Souchong tea will give you wonderful results as well.
Place the chopped chocolate and bourbon in a bowl and set aside.
Bring the cream just to a boil in a small saucepan.
Stir in the tea leaves and remove from the heat. Let sit until desired level of smokiness is achieved (around 20 minutes).
Strain out the tea leaves, pressing to extract as much of the cream as possible, then return the infused cream to the saucepan.
Bring it back up to just boiling and immediately turn it off. Pour the scalded, infused cream over the chocolate and bourbon in the bowl, stir in the pinch of salt and gently continue stirring until smooth.
Set aside to cool to room temperature. This ganache may be stored covered and chilled for up to 5 days before using.
When ready to use to fill the cookies, let warm to room temperature and pipe or spoon a small portion onto each macaron base before the warm toasted marshmallow is added.
(Photos by Julian Landa).
Pastry Chef Jared Bachelor at times is his own taste tester! Here we find him ‘testing’ a green tea and lemon verbena sorbet that he served as a palatte cleanser between courses. He served these little handmade cones standing up in a flower pot with cookie crumb “dirt” and fresh greens!