Sarah bernhardts

Yield: 4 servings

Measure Ingredient
⅔ cup (3 1/2 ounces) whole
\N \N Blanched almonds
¾ cup Sugar
3 tablespoons (1-2) egg whites
½ teaspoon Almond extract
\N \N Chocolate Ganache, made and
\N \N Chilled at least 5 to 6
\N \N Hours in advance,
\N \N Recipe follows
\N \N Sarah Bernhardt Chocolate
\N \N Glaze, recipe follows
\N \N Gold leaves or 2 tablespoons
\N \N Minced unsalted shelled
\N \N Pistachios
\N \N Special Equipment:
\N \N Pastry bag fitted with a
\N \N Plain #9 tip (5/8-inch)

To Make Macaroons: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, grind almonds and sugar until fine. Add egg whites and almond extract and process to a paste.

Transfer mixture to the pastry bag. Pipe 1½-inch high, leaving about 1-inch between macaroons on the parchment-lined baking sheet.

Let stand for 30 minutes. Meanwhile preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Bake macaroons until they begin to color, about 20 minutes. Cool on baking sheet on a wire rack. When cool, carefully peel each cookie from the parchment paper. Macaroons may be completed up to 3 days in advance. Wrap well and refrigerate.

To Assemble and Finish Pastries: Wash and dry pastry bag and tip, then re-assemble. Beat chilled Chocolate Ganache until the color lightens and mixture becomes stiff enough to hold its shape. Do not overbeat or ganache will have a granular texture. Transfer ganache to pastry bag. Pipe a 2-inch high kiss-shaped mound on top of each Macaroon.

Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 1 hour.

Meanwhile, prepare Sarah Bernhardt Chocolate Glaze. Strain glaze through a fine strainer. Allow to cool until a small dab on your upper lip feels barely cool, about 88 degrees. Transfer glaze to a narrow container tall enough to dip the pastries. Hold the cookie part of each pastry carefully and dip each one, upside down, into the glaze, reaching deep enough just to cover ganache. Set pastry upright and top with a pinch of pistachio, if desired. Refrigerate pastries immediately; keep chilled until ready to serve. If you are decorating with gold leaf, omit pistachios. Before applying gold leaf, chill pastries until glaze is set.

Apply gold leaf by touching the thin gold sheets with a tiny artist's brush; the gold will come off in tiny pieces and stick to the brush.

Touch the brush to the pastry to transfer the gold to the pastry.

Pastries may be completed up to 2 days in advance of serving.

Refrigerate in a covered container.

Yield: 20-24 pastries

*edible, real gold and silver leaf is available from Indian Grocery stores where it is called Vark. It is also available from art supply stores. It must be a least 23 carats to be considered edible.


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