I made these little treats as the dessert for our citrus-themed Friday Night Dinner and they were a hit! We seriously just sat outside passing the box around the table eating them. It was great!
I made my own lemon curd for the filling (we’ve been making it in class, so I figured I’d whip some up at home) but if you would rather buy the curd instead of making it, that will totally work too.
These bite size little treats are a lemon explosion! There is lemon zest in the shells and you bite into the macaron and hit the lemon curd and BOOM!, more lemon. I’m literally trying not to drool all over my keyboard as I write this. They were gooood.
This recipe is different from my others because it isn’t in cups. I was talking with an instructor at my school and he said because macaron making is so precise, it’s better to use grams as the measurement for the shells. The lemon curd is in ounces because its a recipe from my class and that’s how it was given to us. I bought a cheap digital scale from Target (you don’t need anything fancy, just something that will work) and I’m pretty sure it will become a very well-used appliance in my kitchen.
I used gel food colouring to make the shells yellow because it was what I had on hand, but if you can get your hands on some powdered food colouring I would recommend that. The gel colours get darker as they cook so these didn’t end up being the bright, vibrant yellow I had envisioned. It was more of a golden, sunset yellow which was fine just not what I was looking for.
The lemon zest needs to be completely dried out before you use it. If you can leaving the zest to dry out overnight is ideal but as long as it can sit for 2-3 hours you should be fine. The egg whites will also produce a macaron if they’re left out overnight but if you can’t they only need about 30 minutes to reach room temperature.
Now the curd. It’s a pretty straightforward process. The only thing you have to be careful with is tempering the eggs with the hot lemon juice. When you temper the eggs you are pouring the hot lemon juice into the egg-sugar mixture. This needs to be done slowly, whisking as you pour in the liquid, so the eggs don’t scramble. There is nothing worse than scrambled egg lemon curd. Yuck. I pour in a little lemon juice at a time, whisk it together, then add it little by little, continuously whisking, until all of the juice has been incorporated. If you can get the down, the rest of the curd making process is easy.
I hope you all enjoy making these little guys. If you have any questions about the macaron making process or tempering your eggs, feel free to contact me!
Lemon Macarons with Lemon Curd:
Makes 25-30 macarons
- 110g almond meal
- 200g powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp. lemon zest, dried
- 90g egg whites, room temperature
- 30g sugar
- Yellow food colouring, gel or powder
- 1.6 oz. lemon juice
- 2.6 oz. sugar
- Lemon zest, to taste (optional)
- 1 egg yolk
- 1.6 oz. egg
- 2 oz. butter
- Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.
- In a food processor, process almond meal, powdered sugar and lemon zest. Sift into a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with whisk attachment, combine egg whites and sugar. Whip until stiff peaks form, adding food colouring about a minute before they reach the stiff peak stage (usually after 4-5 minutes).
- Add the dry ingredients to the whipped egg whites. Fold together until combined – thick ribbons should fall from the spatula back to the mixture.
- Transfer batter to a piping bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe into 1-inch circles on your prepared baking sheets, about 1-inch apart.
- Bang baking sheets on the counter 3-4 times to release any air bubbles. Let the macarons sit for at least 30 minutes before baking.
- Heat oven to 300°F. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 15 minutes, rotating the pan about halfway through for even baking. Remove from oven and place on top of a cooling rack to cool. Once cool, remove from sheets and pair up macarons.
- While the macarons are baking and cooling, make the lemon curd. Heat the lemon juice in a saucepan. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar.
- Once lemon juice is hot temper the eggs with it, pouring slowly and whisking constantly. Transfer back to a saucepan and cook until thick. Remove from heat, add butter, combine, and chill until ready to use.
- Place a small amount of lemon curd on one half of each macaron pair and gently sandwich together. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator; allow to come to room temperature before eating.