For the shells
175g icing sugar
10g cocoa powder
100g egg whites ( 2 large or 3 medium) at room temp
45g granulated sugar
For the ganache filling
25 cardamom pods
300 ml double cream
300g 70% chocolate
1.Preheat oven to 150degrees
2.To make the shells, sift the icing sugar and cooca powder together, then stir in the ground almonds. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until foamy, then add half the caster sugar and continue whisking, When the egg whites are firm add the remaining caster sugar and whisk it in until the mixture is thick and glossy. Add the dry ingredients to the egg whites and fold them through carefully and thoroughly. This is called the ‘macaronade’.
3. Spoon the macaronade into a large piping bag. Once filled snip off the end.
4. Leave the baking sheets to one side for at least an hour before baking- you can leave them overnight if needed. This allows the macarons to develop a skin, which prevents them rising with a crack in the top and encourages them to create a ‘foot’, which is characteristic of the way finished macarons should look.
5. Bake the shells for 12-13 mins until they are well risen , crisp and have well-defined ‘feet’. Allow them to cool completely before removing them from the baking sheets.
6. To make the ganache filling, crush the 25 cardmamom pods in a pestle and mortar to reveal the seeds inside. Add to a small pan with the 300 ml double cream and place over a low-medium heat to heat through without boiling. Take it off the heat and then leave it to infuse for half an hour.
7. Break the 300g dark chocolate into small pieces so that it has the best chance to melt evenly and place in a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream back up until it is just steaming, then pour the cream through a strainer onto the chocolate, gradually stirring the chocolate as it melts, to create your ganache.
Would probably leave the cardamom out of the ganache next time.