Step 1: Sift the confection sugar and almond flour into a bowl.
Step 2: Put the room temperature egg whites into a very clean bowl.
Step 3: Using a mixer, whisk egg whites. Once they begin to foam add the cream of tartar and then SLOWLY add the granulated sugar.
Step 4: Add the food coloring (if desired) and vanilla then mix in. Continue to beat until stiff peaks form.
Step 5: Begin folding in the 1/3 of the dry ingredients (sugar and flour).
Step 6: Be careful to add the remaining dry ingredients and fold gently.
Step 7: The final mixture should look like flowing lava and be able to fall into a figure eight without breaking.
Step 8: Spoon into a piping bag with a medium round piping tip and you are ready to start piping.
Step 9: Pipe one-inch dollops onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (this should be glued down with dabs of batter).
Step 10: Tap on counter several times to release air bubbles. Allow to sit for about 40 minutes before placing in oven.
Step 11: Bake at 300F for 12-15 minutes, rotate tray after 7 minutes. Allow to cool completely before removing from baking sheet.
Step 12: Assemble them with any filling you would like. I enjoy lime curd or simple chocolate ganache.
Step 1. Place chopped chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl.
Step 2. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until it begins to gently simmer. (Do not let it come to a rapid boil– that’s too hot!)
Step 3. Pour over chocolate, then let it sit for 2-3 minutes to gently soften the chocolate.
Step 4. With a small rubber spatula, very slowly stir until completely combined and chocolate has melted. The finer you chopped the chocolate, the quicker it will melt with the cream.
Step 5. Ganache can be ready to use as a drizzle or you can let it sit at room temperature to cool and thicken. It will fully cool within 2 hours. Refrigerating speeds this up, but the ganache will not cool evenly. Stir it a few times as it sets in the refrigerator, so it remains even and smooth.
Step 6. Once completely cool and thick, the ganache can be piped with a piping tip or scooped with a spoon. You can also beat the cooled thickened ganache with a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment until light in color and texture, about 4 minutes on medium-high speed.
Step 7. Store the ganache: cover tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Once ganache cools completely, you can cover it tightly and freeze it for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator.
Step 1. Get organized: Once you start making the lemon curd, it is best not to pause. Make sure all your ingredients and equipment are prepped and ready so you can quickly grab each as you need it. Set a fine mesh sieve over a medium sized bowl and set this next to your stove. Have a whisk and a rubber spatula ready to go.
Step 2. Heat the curd on the stovetop over a double boiler: In a proper size bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together. Set over medium heat. Continue whisking until fully combined and uniform in consistency.
Step 3. Continue whisking and the add the juice, zest and a pinch of salt. Once that looks well incorporated and at a hollandaise style consistency remove from the heat.
Step 4. Incorporate the butter a piece or two at a time while whisking continuously. Let each piece partially melt before adding more.
Step 5. Optional Strain the curd: Strain your curd through the fine mesh sieve to remove the zest. Use a spatula to push the curd through, then stir for another two minutes to help it cool down more quickly.
Step 6. Cool and refrigerate: Transfer the curd to a jar with an airtight lid, but leave it uncovered as it cools on the countertop for about 15 minutes. Once at room temp, cover tightly with the lid and transfer to fridge or freezer.
Step 7. Store the curd: Lemon curd will keep in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. You can also store it in the freezer for up to 1 year. To thaw, transfer your curd from the freezer to the fridge 24 hours before you need it.
Patrick Turcot, Executive Chef