Just before Christmas my friend Nora invited me to a charity event in Elephant and Castle in South London. She and a couple of friends have joined forces to set up a charity called The Cake Committee and their facebook fan page can be found here. The idea behind the group is get together and enjoy the simple pleasures of eating whilst sharing your recipes with friends. The committee meets every couple of months and simply operates a £5 cover charge which is donated to charity and offers you the opportunity to try as many pieces of cake possible whilst washing them down with multiple cups of tea.
On saturday afternoon I was sat on my sofa catching up with the weeks news in The Times and came across a lovely article in the saturday magazine all about the cake committee and included some of the groups recipes, one of which was Nora's recipe for her famous macarons! Below are some of the photos used in the article and I have also included Nora's fantastic recipe! Next time the committee meet, I will be sure to post the invitation, as it is a great cause and what can be better than raising money whilst eating cake!
Makes about 40
25g icing sugar
125g ground almonds
110g egg whites
Pinch of salt
30g granulated sugar
For the ganache
230g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
60g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 Sieve and mix together the icing sugar and almonds. Using a food mixer, whip the egg whites with the salt until foamy, then increase the speed and slowly add the granulated sugar, continuing to whip until stiff. Fold in the sugar and almonds until the mixture is shiny and flowing, and small peaks settle flat.
2 On parchment-lined baking sheets, pipe the mixture into rounds and leave to sit at room temperature for 1-2 hours. Bake at 160C/Gas 3 for 10-11 minutes, rotating after 5 minutes to ensure they bake evenly. When cooked, transfer to a rack until cool, then remove from the parchment.
3 To make the ganache, heat the cream and stir in the chocolate. When melted, leave to cool for a minute, then stir in the butter. Allow to cool at room temperature or chill in the fridge until it can be spread or piped.
4 Pair macaroons of similar size and sandwich with ganache. Refrigerate overnight so the flavours can blend. Bring back to room temperature before serving.