Macarons of Nancy

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Everyone knows macarons, the little round cookies.They come in pastel colors filled with a ganache or jam in the middle and on sale everywhere.

There is another version of macarons, more rustic, golden brown color. This version is made with almond powder, egg white, and icing sugar. These macarons are from Nancy, the capital of the north-eastern French. They were created 200 hundred years ago by two nones, Marguerite and Marie-Élisabeth to help to fund their monastery. Now, these macarons are popular and became the reputation of the city of Nancy.

They are delicious, crunchy, sticky and smells almond. I love to serve them with a coffee.

This recipe is adapted from the book Gâteaux from Christophe Felder and Camille Lesecq!

Serves: 16

Ingredients:

  • 190g of almond powder
  • 255g of icing sugar
  • 100g of egg white
  • 20g of acacia honey
  • A few drops of Almond extract for me

Procedure:

  1. In a large bowl add the almond powder, the icing sugar, the egg white, the honey and finally the almond extract.
  2. Mix very well all the ingredients together with a spatula.
  3. Cover with a plastic wrap paper and refrigerate for 3 hours (more is better).
  4. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let the dough rest for 15 minutes at room temperature.
  5. Preheat the oven to 180C degrees.
  6. Line a wax paper on a large tray and set aside.
  7. With a teaspoon take a little piece of the dough and drop it on the tray.
  8. Repeat the same way with the remaining dough (don’t forget to late space between them).
  9. Flatten the macarons with a wet teaspoon to try to have a nice circle (6 centimeters).
  10. Bake for 2o minutes (more or less depending on the oven).
  11. Remove from the oven when they are golden brown and allow to cool for a few minutes.
  12. Serve with a hot strong coffee.

Bonne Dégustation!

PS: If you want to have perfect macarons use a piping bag.

 

Galettes with Orange Blossom Water

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IMG_4989I think we all love cookies (including biscuits and galettes). Simple, flavored, aromatic, sweet, or salty. Here is an easy recipe of Galette made with flour, almond powder and of course with orange blossom water to enhance the aroma. We used to make them all the time when I was a child. Perfect recipe to bake with children.

I have a large basket of galettes for Fiesta Friday #96 hosted by our fantastic Angie from The Novice Gardener.

Serves: 30/35 pieces

Ingredients:

  • 200g of almond powder
  • 400g of flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 180g of caster sugar
  • 125g of sunflower oil
  • 11g of baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons of orange blossom water
  • Egg yolk for the brush
  • Sliced almonds

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Procedure: (easy)

  1. In a large bowl add the flour, the almond powder, the pinch of salt and the baking powder.
  2. Mix with a wooden spoon the four ingredients.
  3. Add the sugar and mix again.
  4. Add the four eggs at the same time and mix all the ingredients.
  5. Pour the orange blossom water.
  6. Fina, ly pour the sunflower oil.
  7. Mix all the ingredients with your hands until the dough becomes assembled.
  8. Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 180C degrees.
  10. Flour a large baking tray.
  11. Remove the dough from the refrigerator.
  12. Flour a clean surface and flatten the dough with a rolling pin, use a round metal circle cookie cutter to make your galettes, (you can use different sizes of round cookie cutters).
  13. Transfer the biscuits onto the baking tray and proceed the same way for the rest of the dough.
  14. Brush with an egg yolk the entire surface of each galette.
  15. Sprinkle with a few sliced almonds or make lines with a fork on the top.
  16. Bake for 30 minutes, more or less depending the oven, or when the top is golden brown.
  17. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

They are so good with a hot Latte!

Bon Appétit!

Little Palmiers

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Yet another recipe for my puff pastry recipe! The little palmiers are a simple, classic, French little treat. They are very easy to prepare, all you need is a good quality of puff pastry and sugar! They are also called elephant ears when they are on sale in large size.

Serves: 20

Ingredients:

  • 300g of pâte feuilletée/puff pastry (see recipe here)
  • 100g of caster sugar

IMG_2810 Procedure:

  1. Dust generously a clean surface with sugar.
  2. Flatten the pâte feuilletée/puff pastry on the top of the sugar and make a rectangle (25/30 centimeters).
  3. Sprinkle with sugar the top of the dough (be generous).
  4. Put the long side of the rectangle in front of you.
  5. Mark the center of the dough with a small line (at 15 centimeters).
  6. Start folding each side into the middle (start with the long side of the rectangle).
  7. Then repeat the same procedure a second time.
  8. Repeat again for the third and the last time (you obtain six layers, it should look like a closed book).
  9. Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  10. Grease and dust with sugar a large cooking pan.
  11. Preheat the oven to 180C degrees.
  12. Remove the dough from the refrigerator.
  13. With a sharp knife cut slices of 1cm thick and lay them on the cooking pan.
  14. Bake for 20 minutes (more or less depending on the oven).
  15. When they are golden brown, flip the little palmiers with a spatula and bake again for another 10 minutes.
  16. When they are brown and caramelized  (as seen in the picture) remove them from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Crispy, sweet and caramelized! These little treats are perfect for a tea, I opted for a Jasmine tea!

Bon Appétit!

PS: As I am a gourmand, I always choose the elephant ears at the bakery with my cousins  🙂

Palets Bretons

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IMG_2697Palets Bretons are French butter cookies from Brittany (located North West of France). They are crunchy and a little bit salty. They are made with only a few ingredients; sugar, eggs, salted butter, flour and baking powder. They are on sale everywhere in France. This is my surprise for Fiesta Friday with our great hostess Angie from The Novice Gardener.

Thanks to  Jhuls @The Not So Creative Cook and Juju @cookingwithauntjuju for co-hosting this week Fiesta Friday!

If you have not yet joined Fiesta Friday #51. I advise you to come 🙂

Serves: 10 Palets Bretons

Ingredients:

  • 100g of white granulated sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 80g of salted butter
  • 140g of flour
  • 6g of baking powder

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Procedure: Easy

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C degrees.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and the sugar until it becomes pale and creamy.
  3. Add the flour, the baking powder, and the salted butter all at once.
  4. With your fingertips rub all the ingredients together until you obtain a nice dough (as in the picture).
  5. If the dough is sticky, rub your hands with a little of the flour and transfer the dough into a plastic wrap.
  6. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  7. Remove the dough from the refrigerator.
  8. Place a sheet of parchment paper down on a baking cookie pan and set aside.
  9. Dust with flour a clean surface.
  10. Flatten the dough with the rolling pin (1-centimeter épaisseur).
  11. Use metal round circle cutter cookie to make nice Palets Breton.
  12. Transfer delicately the cookie with the metal round circle cutter on the baking sheet (delicate procedure, see in the picture).
  13. Do not remove the cutter cookie (if you remove the cutter cookie the cookie collapses into the oven).
  14. Proceed the same way for the rest of the dough.
  15. Bake for 25 minutes (more or less depending on the oven) or until brown color.
  16. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes.

PicMonkey CollageThe Palets Bretons are crunchy, buttery and a little salted. They are nice served with a hot drink (a hot café au lait for me!).

Bon Appétit.

PS: For this recipe, I used round circle cookie cutters with different sizes. You have another option, you can use straight edge cupcake pan to make a regular and nice shape (as mine is not straight). The Palets Bretons are not flat cookies, they are thick and always round.

PSS: Recipe from my Aunt Mimy, who is amazing in the kitchen 🙂

Strawberry Jam Biscuits

img_0171 img_0163 img_0168Here is my little Strawberry Jam Biscuits for Fiesta Friday #17. I always like simple biscuits, as I find they go so well with a good afternoon tea or coffee. I have always made Biscuits or Sables (in French), and they are very easy to make! Thank you, Angie (from The Novice Gardener), Jhuls (from The Not So Creative Cook), Selma (from Selma’s Table) and Alex (from Dinner Daydreams).
Serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 300g of all purpose flour
  • 150g of soft butter
  • 100g of icing sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 25ml of water
  • Icing sugar to dust
  • Strawberry jam

Procedure:

  1. In a bowl add the flour, the icing sugar, and the salt.
  2. Add the butter and mix the ingredients with your fingers.
  3. Add one egg and mix slowly (always with your fingers).
  4. Pour the water and mix until it holds a softball.
  5. Wrap the dough in a plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge for 15 minutes.
  6. Dust with the flour a clean surface.
  7. Remove the dough from the fridge.
  8. With a rolling pin, flatten the dough (0,5 centimeters thickness).
  9. Grease and flour a baking tray.
  10. Preheat the oven to 170C degrees.
  11. With cookie cutters make a circle shape.
  12. Divide the numbers of the biscuits in 2.
  13. Keep one-half whole (which will serve as the base).
  14. Use small cookie cutters and make a hole in the middle of the other half (you obtain half whole biscuits and half with a hole in the middle, like in the pictures).
  15. Add the biscuits to the baking tray.
  16. Bake for 20 minutes, when the bottom is golden remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes.
  17. With a teaspoon add a little of the jam in the middle of the whole biscuits (the base).
  18. Dust with icing sugar the biscuit with a hole in the middle.
  19. Delicately cover the biscuits with the hole on the top of the whole biscuits.

The biscuits are soft and buttery. You can choose any jam, I opted for a strawberry jam because I like the contrast of the jam and the icing sugar.

Bon Appétit!

PS: When I was younger I used to call them “little mirrors” because the jam in the middle would always shine!

Pistachio Biscotti, Croquets à la pistache

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I have always had a soft spot for anything crispy, crack in the tooth that smells pistachio, the bitter almond or orange blossom with my coffee or tea.

Today I propose you a simple recipe for Pistachio Biscotti and this is what I will be bringing to this Fiesta Friday, hosted by Angie.

Serves 14 biscotti

Ingredients:

  • 300g of all purpose flour flour
  • 200g of ground pistachios
  • 150g of granulated white sugar
  • A pinch  of salt
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 120g of melted butter
  • 1 egg yolk for the brush
  • Sliced almonds for decoration

Procedure:

  1. In a bowl add the flour, the sugar, the ground pistachios, the baking powder and a pinch of salt.
  2. Start to mix with your fingers.
  3. Add the melted butter and mix all the ingredients with your fingers.
  4. Pour 2 eggs and continue to mix gently until the dough becomes firm.
  5. Sprinkle with a pinch of flour a clean surface and roll the dough into a log.
  6. Flour a baking tray and transfer the log to it.
  7. Flatten with your hands and make the shape of a rectangle (35 cm length and 15 cm width).
  8. Brush the top with the egg yolk and sprinkle with the sliced almonds.
  9. Preheat your oven to 180C and bake for 35 minutes.
  10. Remove the tray from the oven and cut very carefully slices of 2 cm and roll it on one side.
  11. Bake for another 10 minutes.
  12. Remove again from the oven and flip the Biscottis into the other side.
  13. Bake for another 5 minutes.
  14. Remove and allow to cool.

The Biscottis are golden with a crunchy texture and  I love to dip it in hot latteė

Store the Biscottis in a metal box, thus protecting them from moisture!

Bon Appétit!

French Meringues.

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There are 3 different types of Meringue: the French, the Italian and the Swiss. I opted for the French, it’s the easy one. Perfect for tarte (pie).

Serves 20

Ingredients:

  • 4  egg whites
  • 200g of granulated white sugar
  • 50g of ice sugar
  • 2 drops of food coloring (green for me)
  • Pinch of salt

Procedure:

  1. Grease and flour a baking pan.
  2. In a bowl add the egg whites and the pinch of salt,  start to beat.
  3. Add slowly the granulated sugar and continue to beat.
  4. Pour the icing sugar and finally the food coloring.
  5. Beat until the mixture forms soft peaks, it looks like green satin.
  6. With a tablespoon take a scoop of the mixture and drop it with the help of another tablespoon on to the baking pan.
  7. Continue until you’re done.
  8. It’s a very delicate process.
  9. Preheat your oven at 90C and bake for 1 hour.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

Meringues are crispy on the outside and hollow inside. It’s very challenging but the result was worth it.

Bon Appétit!