The Most Complicated Recipe That Will Probably Make You Vom

August 9, 2011 § 2 Comments

This is my interpretation of David Lebovitz’s interpretation of Pierre Herme’s recipe for Ketchup Macarons. Yes, French cookies made of ketchup. And they think Americans put ketchup on everything?

Great with cookies!

First, buy a food scale because converting grams into cups & teaspoons did not happen nicely. Be prepared to eyeball the lines between ounces a lot.

Disclaimer: All measurements and temperatures were converted. They are approximate and likely wrong.

You need to make the cookies in 3 parts- mixture, meringue and filling. Clear your schedule. Macarons are more about technique than knowing how to bake. They’re easy to mess up, hard to fix and these particular ones probably won’t taste good anyway. Feel free to scratch this now and invest in a tube of Tollhouse.

Still here, really? Ok…

The almond mixture:
5oz powdered almonds
5oz powdered sugar
2 egg whites
1/2 oz red food coloring

The meringue:
5oz granulated sugar
1.5oz water
2 egg whites

1. Sift together powdered almonds and powdered sugar. Add one set of egg whites and food coloring, but do not stir them together for some reason.

2. Grab a saucepan and a candy thermometer. Cook the granulated sugar and water to 240°F. Whip the whites in a mixing bowl until they form “soft peaks” or until they at least stand up on the end of the mixer because we’re making cookies, not doing a Bob Ross landscape. Once the syrup hits a skin grafting 245°F, pour it over the remaining egg whites and keep on whipping.

3. Whip, whip, whip the whites until the temperature drops to 120°F.

4. Fold in almond mixture.

5. Using a pastry bag with a plain tip, pipe 3.5cm rounds onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Once piped, let the rounds sit for 30 minutes to develop a crust.

6. Pre-heat the oven the 350°F. I forgot until just now.

7. Bake the macarons for about 12 minutes, during which time, Lebovitz says to “rapidly open the door twice.”

According to Lebovitz:

The instructions said to Laissez cuire 12mn en ouvrant rapidement 2 fois la porte du four, which seemed to be right before they’re done.

What the hell, French chefs? Is it really necessary to take a heat blast to my face and startle the poor cookies?

8. Remove from oven. Once cool, remove cookies from baking sheet. Keep them out of reach of the dog while you make…

The filling:
1.5oz cornichons (French for Gherkin… pickles. The cookie recipe wants pickles.)
3 sheets of gelatin
2.5 cups Heinz ketchup
4-5 drops hot sauce

1. Rinse pickles and pat dry. Dice pickles into tiny cubes.

2. Soak the gelatin in cold water for 15 minutes.

3. Remove the gelatin and melt it in a saucepan over low heat or zap it in the microwave until just until melted. Mix in 1/4 of the ketchup. Now add the rest. Stir in the pickles and a few drops of hot sauce, to taste.

4. Pipe filling onto one macaron cookie and sandwich another on top. Give it a little twist to seal it nicely.

5. Chill for an hour, until the filling is set.

You should get something that looks like this:

Ketchup Macarons by David Lebovitz

Lebovitz said he “could imagine these as a savory-sweet hors d’œuvre.”

I can imagine them as super pretentious dog treats or one of those foods you run up to your friends raving about and then film them spitting the cookies out all over each other.

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