Monday, June 30, 2014

Lemon Raspberry Macaron Recipe!

Lemon Raspberry Macaron Laduree Recipe

Thought Macaron Mondays had ended last week? So did I... until I made some more!


I had intended just to make lemon macarons when it hit me as the meringue was whipping... what if I added... raspberry! *evil laugh*. I did. And it was good.
Lemon Raspberry Macaron Laduree Recipe

Time for the recipe.
It's from this fabulous book: Laduree: The Sweet Recipes.  Let's get started. 
Three recipes today: The macaron shells, the lemon filling, and the raspberry filling.
GET THE PRINTABLE RECIPE HERE

Materials needed:
  • a food scale (yes, you need this. I use this one)
  • a piping tip and piping bag (I like the ateco #806, I use these tips and piping bag
  • Food coloring (the gels or dry powder works best, not the liquid store stuff)
  • A macaron template (either make one or get one here or here. It makes piping easier)
  • food processor (for the cream filling, I use this one)
Laduree Macaron shell Recipe
275g ground almonds  
250g powdered sugar   
210g egg whites          
210g granulated sugar 

1.  Mix almond meal and the powdered sugar in a food processor. Be careful not to grind too long, otherwise it will form a paste.

2. Sift the almonds and powdered sugar. Set aside.

3. Weigh out granulated sugar.

4. Weigh the egg whites.  Beat them slowly on a low speed until foamy. SLOWLY add the granulated sugar to the egg whites as you beat.  Once all mixed, increase speed to medium and beat until a firm meringue forms.  You want a firm meringue with glossy peaks but not stiff peaks.  They should defy gravity and remain in the bowl if you turn it upside down.  If you tilt your bowl to the side and they are sliding out, keep beating.

5. Add the food coloring gel and mix.

6. Then fold in 1/3rd of the almond/sugar mixture into the meringue with a silicone spatula.  Once combined, add another third of the almond mixture. Add last bit.  This batter requires more deflation during this step since it creates such a poofy meringue.

7. Add the batter to a piping bag.  Pipe in rows using your template onto parchment paper.

8. Pick up the pan and beat until the counter.  The cookies need to rest on the counter between 30-60 minutes.  They are ready to go in the oven when they are dry to touch (the shell shouldn’t stick to your finger)

9.  Set the oven to 300F.

10. Bake the cookies for 13-15 minutes, one sheet at a time. They are done when they look kind of matte and seem firm when you lightly tap on them.  You can always rescue a slightly overcooked one with the maturation process that comes later, but you cannot rescue an undercooked one!!   


11. Remove from paper once completely cool. If they stick to the paper, they aren’t cool yet. Or you undercooked them.

Lemon Filling Recipe
Ingredients
  • 160g granulated sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon, grated (approx. 5 grams)
  • 5g cornstarch (cornflour)
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 110mL lemon juice (use fresh lemon juice)
  • 235g butter, softened
Directions
1. Prepare the lemon cream one day in advance.

2. In a bowl, mix together the sugar and lemon zest. Then add the cornstarch.

3. Add the eggs one at a time and then the lemon juice.

4. Pour this mixture into a saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring with a spatula until it simmers, allowing the cream to thicken.

5. Remove from heat.

6. Allow the cream to cool slightly for approx. 10 minutes so that is hot but not scalding (approx. 140 degrees Fahrenheit).  (Now, if you got egg white chunks in it like I did one time, just strain the lemon mixture before adding the butter).

7. Add the softened butter.

8. In a blender or food processor, blend the butter and cream together until mixed. 

9. Keep in airtight container for minimum of 12 hours so that the cream may become firm.

Raspberry Filling Recipe
Ready for this recipe: go buy seedless raspberry jam. Done!

Filling the cookie shells:
1. On one side of the cookie shell, fill one-half of the shell with lemon cream.  On the other cookie shell, fill one-half the shell with raspberry jam.  Twist the two shells together to get them to stick. 

2. Let cookies rest in the fridge for a minimum of 12 hours but preferably 24 hours.  This allows the "macaronnage" to occur. (basically, the ingredients all soak in together and make the cookie taste amazing!).
Lemon Raspberry Macaron Laduree Recipe
Lemon Raspberry Macaron Laduree Recipe
This is the end of Macaron Mondays (for now).  To check out my other macaron recipes, either click on the "recipe" link above or the macaron link below!

written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com
 I've linked up with:The Scoop! at Confessions of a Plate Addict/Stone Gable, Inspire Me Tuesday at a Stroll Thru Life, Do Tell Tuesday at a Vintage Zest,  Tickle my Tastebuds Tuesday,  Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, What's it Wednesdays at Ivy & Elephants, Centerpiece Wednesdays at The Style Sisters Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage,   Home Sweet Home at the Charm of HomeG'day Saturdays at Natasha in Oz Sunday Best Showcase at Twigg Studios.and worthwhile Wednesdays! Be sure to check out all of these fabulous blogging parties! A big thank you to all of the wonderful hosts!


This post was featured at The Scoop!, Tickle my Tastebud Tuesday's feature at A Kitchen Hoor's Adventure, and Do Tell Tuesday at Diane;s Vintage zest!  Thank you all for the features!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

French Baskets

I've been meaning to blog about my French basket find for a little while now.

I purchased all three of these for $20 total.  Aren't they cute?

These reminded me of some baskets I have seen at Restoration Hardware.

They have replaced my ugly plastic waste baskets in the house!

I've linked up with:The Scoop! at Confessions of a Plate Addict/Stone Gable, Metamorphosis Monday's at Between Naps on the Porch,  Inspire Me Tuesday at a Stroll Thru Life, Do Tell Tuesday at a Vintage Zest,  You're Going to Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E,  Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, What's it Wednesdays at Ivy & Elephants,  Treasure Hunt Thursday at From My Front Porch To Yours, Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home Sunday Best Showcase at Twigg Studios. Be sure to check out all of these fabulous blogging parties! A big thank you to all of the wonderful hosts!

Written by http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com

Monday, June 23, 2014

Fourth of July Fruit Flags

With Fourth of July just around the corner, I thought I'd share some of my favorite fruit flag desserts that I have found throughout the internet!  I was inspired to search after I posted my flag dessert from Memorial Day, seen HERE.


Browsing through pinterest... I found all of these wonderful flag desserts.  Let's look at them all!

First up though is my fruit flag I made this time for the Fourth of July.  I used golden raspberries, blackberries, and raspberries.  As most of the fruit flags I saw were made with strawberries, I thought mine was a little different.  Now grab a spoon and serve up with ice cream!

Fourth of July Berry Flag with raspberries and black berries

Watermelon, blueberry, and pineapple flag tray...
www.pinterest memorial day food | memorial-day-recipe
4th of july flag dessert source
Strawberry, blueberry, and white chocolate (or yogurt) covered pretzels...
4th of July Snack Idea. great idea  this i could do.
4th of july flag dessert source
Brownie, marshamallow, strawberry, and blueberry flag kabobs...
Brownie Kebabs
fourth of july flag dessert source
Okay, so this isn't in the shape of a flag but it looked so good!  A strawberry, blueberry cheesecake!
Fourth of July!! would be adorable and much healthier over an angel food cake! Just have to figure out how to fix the hole in the middle :)
strawberry blueberry patriotic cheesecake source
Strawberry, blueberry, banana flag kabobs
Fruit flag made of fruit kabobs on a serving tray for 4th of July! #patriotic red white and blue
flag kabobs
Cheese, watermelon, strawberry, blueberry fruit flag
Cheese and fruit flag!  So easy!
fourth of july flag kabob
Blackberry, raspberry, pineapple, strawberry flag...
Fruit flag
fourth of july flag
Fourth of july fruit cake... fruit salad below with cool whip and then strawberries and blueberries.
Layered Fruit Flag Salad
patriotic fruit salad and cake source 
Strawberry, blueberry, marshmallow fruit flag...
Fruit flag!
marshamallow, blueberry, strawberry fruit flag
Strawberry, blueberry, marshmallow fruit flag kabobs!
Fourth of July fruit flag!
marshamallow, strawberry, blueberry fruit kabobs
Fruit tarts!
Cute Food For Kids?: 4th of July Party Food Ideas
flag fruit tarts source
Flag pizza cookie cake
Patriotic Pizzas Recipe
flag pizza cookie cake source
Flag cheesecake bites...
Fruited-Cheesecake Flag
fourth of july cheesecake bites source
Fourth of july flag, this one has cherries!
Serious eats 4th of July flag fruit salad recipe.  Serve with dollops of Truwhip.
source
Ok, not in the shape of a flag... but a deconstructed flag. Had to include this one, a flag tart!
With ready-to-roll sugar cookie dough, fresh fruits, and lemon-cream filling, this dessert is quick to make.
fresh patriotic berry tart source
A sheet cake from the store that someone added fresh cherries and blueberries on top.
Order a sheet cake with white frosting from the bakery. Add blueberries for the stars and cherries for the stripes.
flag cherry and blueberry cake source 
The fruit flag I made for memorial day weekend... golden rapsberries, strawberries, and blueberries! Perfect with ice cream or whipped cream. Or just eat plain!
Fourth of July fruit flag with blueberries, golden raspberries, and strawberries!
Fourth of july raspberry and blueberry cake!
fourth of july flag cake source

UPDATE: Thank you to Posed Perfection for featuring this post at Creative Ways Thursdays! 
Check out my Fourth of July board and follow me on pinterest:


 I've linked up with:The Scoop! at Confessions of a Plate Addict/Stone Gable, Inspire Me Tuesday at a Stroll Thru Life, Do Tell Tuesday at a Vintage Zest,  You're Going to Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E,  Tickle my Tastebuds Tuesday,  Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, What's it Wednesdays at Ivy & Elephants, Centerpiece Wednesdays at The Style Sisters Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home Say G'day at Natasha in Oz Sunday Best Showcase at Twigg Studios. Be sure to check out all of these fabulous blogging parties! A big thank you to all of the wonderful hosts!

linking up at: Metamorphosis Monday's  Wow us Wednesdays! Creative Ways  Share Your Style Thursday Favorite Things Your Turn to Shine Foodie Friday & Everything Else The Inspiration Gallery 2 Bees in a PodMy Romantic Homeamaze me monday,

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

French Country Tablescape Ideas!

I've had my Summer tablescape up since, well, early May. However, down here it's been feeling like Summer since April!

Let's take a look at my French country table setting:
French country table with French rooster placemats, lavender, and green plates - Peonies and Orange Blossoms
French Country Table Setting
The dried lavender is from my parents' garden. Smells great!
My Mother made me these great placemats quite some time ago.  I was putting the Easter green plates away and set one on top of these placemats, and, voila! Turns out the green looked really good on them!
French country table with French rooster placemats, lavender, and green plates - Peonies and Orange Blossoms
French Country Tablescape with lavender and hens
The faux-lavender in the Anduze pot is from my favorite little store in St. Helena in Napa Valley.
French country table with French rooster placemats, lavender, and green plates - Peonies and Orange Blossoms

I love this French country table setting.  Don't know when I'm going to take it down!! 
Do you have any French country table settings to share?

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com/


Monday, June 16, 2014

Cherry Almond Macaron Recipe!

Sharing yet another macaron recipe as part of Macaron Mondays.  Today's recipe is Cherry Almond macarons.  They are really good!

Cherry Almond Macarons Recipe

Cherry Almond Macaron Recipe - click HERE FOR THE PRINTABLE RECIPE

For the macaron cookie shell recipe, I use the Laduree macaron recipe.
Materials needed:
  • a food scale (yes, you need this. I use this one)
  • a piping tip and piping bag (I like the ateco #806, I use these tips and piping bag
  • Food coloring (the gels or dry powder works best, not the liquid store stuff)
  • A macaron template (either make one or get one here or here. It makes piping easier)
  • food processor (for the cream filling, I use this one)

Laduree Macarons Recipe -
275g ground almonds  
250g powdered sugar   
210g egg whites          
210g granulated sugar 

1.  Mix almond meal and the powdered sugar in a food processor. Be careful not to grind too long, otherwise it will form a paste.

2. Sift the almonds and powdered sugar. Set aside.

3. Weigh out granulated sugar.

4. Weigh the egg whites.  Beat them slowly on a low speed until foamy. SLOWLY add the granulated sugar to the egg whites as you beat.  Once all mixed, increase speed to medium and beat until a firm meringue forms.  You want a firm meringue with glossy peaks but not stiff peaks.  They should defy gravity and remain in the bowl if you turn it upside down.  If you tilt your bowl to the side and they are sliding out, keep beating.

5. Add the food coloring gel and mix.

6. Then fold in 1/3rd of the almond/sugar mixture into the meringue with a silicone spatula.  Once combined, add another third of the almond mixture. Add last bit.  This batter requires more deflation during this step since it creates such a poofy meringue.

7. Add the batter to a piping bag.  Pipe in rows using your template onto parchment paper.

8. Pick up the pan and beat until the counter.  The cookies need to rest on the counter between 30-60 minutes.  They are ready to go in the oven when they are dry to touch (the shell shouldn’t stick to your finger)

9.  Set the oven to 300F.

10. Bake the cookies for 13-15 minutes, one sheet at a time. They are done when they look kind of matte and seem firm when you lightly tap on them.  You can always rescue a slightly overcooked one with the maturation process that comes later, but you cannot rescue an undercooked one!!   


11. Remove from paper once completely cool. If they stick to the paper, they aren’t cool yet. Or you undercooked them.

Cherry-Almond Filling Recipe:

Makes enough for 40 small sandwiched macarons.
  • 4 ounces of almond paste***
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into cubes, at room temperature
  • 1/2 pint of cherry preserves or cherry pie filling (I used cherry preserves from Trader Joe's)
  • a pinch of salt
  • cinnamon 
  • nutmeg
  1. In a food processor, place the contents of the cherry preserves and start to grind until the large chunks of cherries are gone.  
  2. Add a little bit of cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg to taste.  Add more if you want it to be spicier tasting.  Set mixture aside.
  3. Now, in the bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the almond paste on low speed to break it up.
  4. Slowly incorporate the butter while the mixture is running.  When the butter is completely incorporated the mixture will be smooth.
  5. Add the ground cherries in and a pinch of salt.  Mix until it appears well-mixed.
  6. You may store this cream if it is covered and in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Assembling the cookies:
  1. Add the filling to the macarons. I used a piping bag to pipe the filling in.
  2. Store the filled cookies in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours for the best results.

***If you don't have any almond paste, here's my recipe for almond paste:

Almond paste recipe:
  • 4 ounces of almonds (blanched. I used the pre-ground almonds from Trader Joe's)
  • 4 ounces powdered sugar
  • 1/2 an egg white
1. Grind the almonds in a food processor.
2. Add the sugar and grind again.
3. Add the egg white and continue grinding. Keep grinding until it looks like a paste.

I adapted the cherry almond filling recipe from this wonderful book:
Les Petits Macarons: Colorful French Confections to Make at Home

I want to point out below the different between not folding the almond mixture in enough and folding it in perfectly.  Notice the first ones I piped look like ice cream cones?  They are not mixed enough.  I then remedied the problem and folded my batter a few more times in order to get my cookies to lie flat.
macaron piping

See the difference?  These ones below are now perfectly folded and therefore lie nice and flat.

The cherry preserves I used:
The finished product...

cherry almond macaron recipe
Yum yum!
Cherry Almond Macaron Recipe
For my favorite product recommendations for making such delicate cookies, check out my amazon store

 I've linked up with:The Scoop! at Confessions of a Plate Addict/Stone Gable, Merry Mondays at my pinterventures, Inspire Me Tuesday at a Stroll Thru Life, Do Tell Tuesday at a Vintage Zest,  You're Going to Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E,  Tickle my Tastebuds Tuesday,  Creative Ways at Posed Perfection,   Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, What's it Wednesdays at Ivy & Elephants,  Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage, Sunday Best Showcase at Twigg Studios. Say G'day  Be sure to check out all of these fabulous blogging parties! A big thank you to all of the wonderful hosts!

Written  at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com
This post may contain affiliate links.

Friday, June 13, 2014

What's on your desk?

I like looking at other people's desks and seeing how they keep them organized.  I recently updated mine.

We recently got a new tv as the other one was not working all of the time.

The thing is though, the old tv is still working... it just takes a few minutes to warm up.  So we didn't want to just get rid of it.

Then a lightbulb went off!

"Lightbulb!" - Gru, from Despicable Me

How about... a GIANT monitor for my laptop! Brilliant!!
giant tv as a computer monitor! GENIUS!

 Now for a desk tour.  I have some pictures of cats and dogs painted in front of Parisian store fronts.


My ipad mini, iphone, and glasses...


My cute monogrammed kleenex box cover I got in St. Helena over in Napa valley!

 My new Royal Crown Derby donkey sits on my desk


Pen and paper always out to jot down notes
Tiffany silver pen!

The thing I hate most about my desk is my chair.  It is soooo ugly. I'm not even sharing a picture of it.

I need a new desk chair. Maybe this one...
Ballard Designs Louis XVI Desk Chair

Or maybe just a regular French chair.
Vintage French Flour-Sack Desk Chair
Restoration Hardware GrainSack French Desk Chair
Some day I want to get a partner's desk instead so my husband and I can sit across from each other.
Restoration Hardware French Partner's Desk
However, an antique partner's desk would be preferred!
Louis XVI Style Mahogany Partner Desk
What's your desk look like?

 I've linked up with:The Scoop! at Confessions of a Plate Addict/Stone Gable, Merry Mondays at my pinterventures, Metamorphosis Monday's at Between Naps on the Porch, Inspire Me Tuesday at a Stroll Thru Life, Do Tell Tuesday at a Vintage Zest,  You're Going to Love it Tuesday at Kathe with an E,  , Cottage Style Party at Lavender Garden Cottage  Wow us Wednesdays! at Savvy Southern Style, What's it Wednesdays at Ivy & ElephantTreasure Hunt Thursday at From My Front Porch To Yours, Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage, Sunday Best Showcase at Twigg Studios. Be sure to check out all of these fabulous blogging parties! A big thank you to all of the wonderful hosts!

Written at http://peoniesnandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com