Notes before beginning:
Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.
To make powdered sugar place 2 cups of granulated sugar in a blender and blend until powdered, about 2 minutes. Do not use commercially prepared powdered sugar, as it contains cornstarch which will cause the macarons to crack.
Ingredients (makes about 2 dozen):
2/3 cups finely ground almonds. I recommend Trader Joes.
1 and 1/2 Cups powdered sugar (see note above)
3 large egg whites
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
Seeds from half a vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a food processor grind the almonds and powdered sugar together for about 45 seconds. Sift the combined mixture through a medium mesh sieve; set aside.
Using a stand mixer beat the egg whites on high until they are foamy. Gradually add the granulated sugar and beat until they are stiff, white, and shiny. Add the vanilla bean seeds or the vanilla extract and combine. Add half of the almond/sugar mixture to the egg whites using a spatula and scraping the sides of the bowl as you go.
Add the rest of the flour mixture to the egg whites and combine, using a spatula to spread it along the sides of the bowl and flipping it over as you go. Continue this procedure until the batter is firm and drips slowly from the spatula.
Pipe the batter, using a pastry bag, onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or a silicone SILPAT, the circles should be about 1″ in diameter. Hit the side of the sheet pan sharply to remove any air bubbles.
Let the macarons rest, at room temperature, until you can touch the surface without having batter come off on your finger. A soft “skin” will have developed on the surface.
Bake for 11-13 minutes, turning once during baking to ensure even browning. Let cool on a cooling rack and remove from sheet with a spatula.
Espresso Cream Filling
3 cups of powdered sugar (in this case store bought is fine)
1 cup of unsalted (sweet) butter at room temperature
1 tablespoon heavy cream
2 tablespoons Kill Devil Quattro brewed espresso
Using a stand mixer combine the powdered sugar and butter and mix on high speed until combined. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl several times while mixing.
Gradually add the heavy cream, continue beating. Add the brewed espresso, combine at medium speed. You may adjust for thickness using small amount of espresso and cream as desired.
Once the macarons are cooled spread the espresso cream on the bottom of the macaron and top with a second macaron, creating a sandwich. The macarons can be stored, covered, for 2-3 days. They can also be frozen for up to 3 weeks.