Last night, I found these and knew that my little G would LOVE them!
Today I did it. I really did it! After Big Daddy got home from work, I knew it was time. I had no babies hanging off me and it meant I could stand up straight for a minimum of a half an hour. It was like being at the spa!
Everything that I've read alluded to the fact that these were going to be difficult to make and even more difficult to make right. Finicky little buggers apparently.
Other than over cooking one batch of simple syrup and turning it to crystal, everything turned out beautifully.
I haven't filled them yet, but I know that they won't last long enough to turn into Elmo's. This time.
These will now be a kitchen staple, and hopefully a best seller!!
Here's the recipe I used, adapted from Hi-Cookery's Elmo post.
1 C Ground Almonds
1 C Icing Sugar
3 Egg Whites (Aged at Room Temperature for 24 Hours)
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
1/4 C Water
1 1/2 t. Clear Vanilla Extract
Wilton Red-Red Gel Color (Just enough to reach your desired color)
~Sift almonds and icing sugar together into a bowl.
~Whip egg whites with either a stand mixer or hand mixer until soft peaks form. (Don't over whip)
~In a heavy saucepot, boil sugar and water to 245 degrees on a candy thermometer.
~Whisk the hot sugar syrup into the frothy egg whites until stiff, shiny peaks form.
~Fold the whipped sugar and whites into the almond/icing sugar blend carefully.
~Right before it's fully blended, add in flavour and color without over mixing.
~Mixture should flow smoothly, but not be too thin.
~Place in a piping bag and pipe 1 inch circles onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Tap pan once or twice on the counter to allow discs to take shape.
~Leave pan to sit for at least a half hour to allow skin to form on the shell.
~Bake at 290 degrees for 13 minutes (every oven is different, this is what worked for me) Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before removing shells from parchment.
~Remove and fill with anything delicious! (Ganache, buttercream, jams; the options are endless..)
~Place filled cookies overnight in the fridge to "set", remove and allow to come to room temperature before serving!
I'm rather proud of myself, I feel like I've joined an exclusive club and can't wait to make more.