As most of you can probably tell from my sporadic post times, I tend to be a last minute person when it comes to baking. With my packed schedule, my recipes often sadly get shoved farther and farther back in the week until it’s 2pm Sunday afternoon and I haven’t yet shot photos of my recipe let alone taken the last batch out of the oven (I’ll let you be the judge of how hypothetical that example was…). Sometimes it just seems like I need more hours in the day!
Now the me a few years ago would have allowed this type of potentially stressful timeline to ruin my attitude–and likely my recipe with it. After lack of time yielded far too many frantic, reality-tv worthy episodes, though, I’ve grown to understand just how much easier it is to be calm when every bone in my body is telling me I shouldn’t be.
That mentality must have been what gave me the questionably rational idea to attempt vegan macarons when I knew good and well I’d only have half a day to perfect them and create a blog post about it. When the third failed tray came out of the oven, I’ll admit I started to wonder whether I’d have to disappoint my modest but very supportive group of followers by going recipe-less this week. Thank goodness I decided against quitting and ended up with a bake I’m quite excited to share!
These macarons are a twist on the classic pistachio flavor so dear to many. Filled with a sort of strawberry dessert hummus, they take advantage of both the aquafaba and the chickpeas themselves to avoid waste. This is my first time using pink peppercorns, and I absolutely fell in love. The citrusy, peppery addition was a perfect way to top of the bite. You’ll be shocked how easy they are to make too!
It’s because I decided not to panic that I was able to not only successfully complete this recipe, but meet a friend for tea, catch up with a cousin on the phone for a few hours, and still make it to Bible Study. I’m so thankful that the older I get the more I’m able to see the benefit of just forgetting to look at the clock every once in a while. We can never match the pace of time–it never stops. So why not lag behind a bit to enjoy what is happening around us, no matter how uncomfortably slow the pace? Today’s post is brief, but that’s ok because today I was able to pause, was able to “stop and smell the roses” as they say (not the most applicable reference given the snowy situation outside). Next time you lose your watch, don’t sweat it.
So I commend the enjoyment of life, because there is nothing better for a person under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany them in their toil all the days of the life God has given them under the sun.
Pink Peppercorn-Dusted Pistachio Strawberry Mini Macarons (V)
- 1 cup almond flour
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar (vegan if desired)
- 1 TBSP Jello pistachio pudding mix
- 1/4 cup caster sugar (vegan if desired)
- aquafaba from 1 can of chickpeas
- 1 tsp cream of tartar
- pink peppercorns, ground (for topping)
STRAWBERRY “HUMMUS” FILLING
- 1/2 cup halved strawberries
- 1 1/2 cups chickpeas
- 1/4 cup vegan butter (earth balance is great), softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar (vegan if desired)
- Put aquafaba in a skillet over medium heat; when simmering, reduce to low-medium heat and reduce by about 1/3. Allow to cool in fridge overnight.
- Whisk together almond flour, pudding mix, and powdered sugar.
- In a separate bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, place 1/4 cup of the reduced aquafaba, and discard the rest. Whip on high speed until soft peaks form (you can do this with a hand mixer as well).
- Add cream of tartar and caster sugar. Mix again on high until soft peaks form.
- Sift all of the almond flour mixture on top of the whipped aquafaba. Using a rubber spatula, begin folding it into the aquafaba, cutting through the center of the mixture and then wrapping around the edges of the bowl until all of the almond flour mixture is incorporated.
- Press the mixture into the sides of the bowl as you continue folding until the mixture is shiny and gradually begins to sink into itself after being dropped from the spatula back into the bowl.
- Put mixture into piping bag and pipe small circles on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. I did circles slightly large than a quarter.
- Drop the trays onto the counter a few times gently. Lightly water your fingertip, and smooth the tops of the macarons down if there are still peaks. Leave them on the trays at room temperature for two hours.
- Preheat the oven to 250°F. Bake the trays one at a time: bake for 15 minutes; turn off the oven but leave the door shut for 10 minutes, and then crack the door open for another 5 minutes before taking them out to cool completely on the trays.
- Add all filling ingredients to food processor or Nutribullet. Blend until smooth.
- Chill in fridge until ready to use–then place in piping bag.
- Pipe filling onto the flat side of a macaron shell. Grind pink peppercorn on the exposed filling before topping with another shell. Top with more pink peppercorn if desired.