Eating Your Brew: Green Tea Macarons with Lemon Balm White Chocolate Ganache

“Tea … is a religion of the art of life.” Kakuzō Okakura

Tea is an ancient treat of life that hosts a variety of joys among the nations of the entire world… tea is about warmth, about needs, about social togetherness, about refreshment, vitalization, and – for some might surprisingly – tea is about health…especially unwilted, unoxidized green tea.

No matter how green tea leaves are consumed, whether brewed, in powdered form or in capsules, the evidence stands that tea is a very potent source of antioxidants. Most significantly, the catechins found most abundantly in green tea are the antioxidants that give tea leaves their health-boosting punch. Consuming tea helps people to slow down and relax, Reardon says. A natural chemical called theanine found in green tea can provide a calming effect.

“A cup of tea would restore my normality.” Douglas Adams

That, itself, would be enough excuse to eat food with tea as colouring, flavour infuser or ingredient. The green tea macarons with lemon balm are fragrant, fresh and delightful. Their sexy mixture of sweet, tangy and bitter create heaven on the palette, and once tried, definitely never to be forgotten…

4 egg whites, at room temperature
200 g granulated sugar
130 almond meal
280 g confectioners sugar
3-4 tsp lemon green tea leaves
For the lemongrass ganache
115 g white chocolate
65 ml cream
A handful of fresh lemon balm finely chopped

Sieve the almond meal and icing sugar together, mix in dry green tea leaves (chopped fine) set aside. Beat the egg whites over medium-high speed until they begin to froth, then add sugar, gradually. Continue beating the mixture until eggs whites are glossy and stiff peaks form. In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients until well blended. Add half of the dry mixture to the egg whites, fold slowly until all ingredients are well combined, then repeat with the other half of the dry mixture. It should slowly drip off the spatula into the bowl and easily absorbing back into the batter at the bottom. Transfer batter into a piping bag, than pipe onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. When all the batter is piped out, firmly tap the baking sheet onto a hard surface. Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C and bake macarons in oven for about 15 minutes. Remove from oven, lift parchment paper with macarons onto a wire rack and let cool completely before filling. To make the ganache filling, melt white chocolate combined with cream gradually in the microwave on low power until chocolate has melted. Mix thoroughly and set aside until firmer.Chop lemon balm leaves finely and fold into ganache. Once the macarons have cooled, pipe a generous layer of icing between two halves.

“There is something in the nature of tea that leads us into a world of quiet contemplation of life.” Lin Yutang

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