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2000s Recipes + Menus

Espresso-Blackberry Macarons

Makes 2 1/2 dozen sandwich cookies
  • Active time:1 hr
  • Start to finish:4 1/2 hr
September 2008
These cookies should set for a while before serving. The fillings help soften the meringue—and your patience will be rewarded with a wonderfully chewy texture.

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For macarons

  • 3 oz almond flour (2/3 cup) or blanched sliced almonds (3/4 cup) or slivered almonds (2/3 cup)
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant-espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature 30 minutes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar

For filling

  • 3 About 1/2 cup blackberry jelly
  • Equipment:

    a food processor with a sharp blade or an electric coffee/spice grinder; a large pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch plain tip or a qt-size sealable bag with a corner snipped off; an offset spatula

Make macaron batter:

  • Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Grind almond flour or almonds with confectioners sugar in food processor until powdery, 30 seconds for almond flour, about 2 minutes for almonds. (If using grinder, grind in small batches.) Sift through a medium-mesh sieve into a bowl (if not fine enough for almost all of nuts to go through sieve, regrind). Sift again into a large bowl.
  • Stir together espresso powder and vanilla in a cup until powder has dissolved.
  • Beat egg whites with salt in a bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until they just hold soft peaks. Beat in granulated sugar, a little at a time. Increase speed to high and beat until meringue holds stiff, glossy peaks, about 1 minute. Add espresso mixture and mix at low speed until incorporated. Fold meringue into almond mixture with a rubber spatula until completely incorporated. (Meringue will deflate and batter will be loose.)

Pipe and bake macarons:

  • Put small dabs of batter under corners of parchment to secure to baking sheets.
  • Spoon half of batter into pastry bag. Holding bag vertically just above baking sheet, pipe 1 1/2-inch-wide mounds of batter about 1 inch apart, stopping pressure and flicking tip sideways to avoid peaks (tamp down any peaks with a wet finger). Refill pastry bag and repeat. Let macarons stand, uncovered, at room temperature until a light crust forms, 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat oven to 300°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.
  • Bake macarons, switching position of sheets halfway through, until crisp and interior does not give easily when a macaron is gently pressed, 22 to 28 minutes total. Cool completely on baking sheets (for residual heat to harden bottoms) on racks, about 30 minutes. Loosen macarons from parchment with offset spatula (they will be fragile).

Assemble cookies:

  • Sandwich flat sides of macarons together with a thin layer of jelly.
  • Layer macarons between sheets of parchment in an airtight container and let stand at room temperature at least 2 hours to soften before eating.
Cooks’ note: Filled macarons can be kept in an airtight container wrapped in plastic wrap, chilled 2 days or frozen 1 month. Bring to room temperature in wrapped container (to avoid condensation), about 1 hour if chilled or 2 hours if frozen.