Macaroon shells made by an Italian meringue filled with a sweet chestnut cream
Preheat the oven to 145'C.
Make the macaroon shells: place the ground almonds and the icing sugar in a food processor and mix to give a fine, lump-free powder.or use a fine sieve.
Place the water and the caster sugar in a saucepan and heat to 118'C. Whilst this mixture is heating, whisk 75g of egg whites. Once the sugar has reached 118'C, add it to the egg whites and whisk until the mixture cools down. Add the food colouring and mix gently.
Add the remaining egg whites to the icing sugar and almond mixture and mix well until you obtain a paste , Add a spoonful of the meringue mixture at the time and fold it in. Once the mixture reaches the ribbon stage, place it in a piping bag and then pipe the macaroons on to a lined baking sheet. Gently tap the baking tray down on to the work surface. Transfer to the oven and cook until the macaroons feet are created, after that keep on opening the oven door every minute or two to turn the macaroons. Macaroons are ready when they don't stick in the paper anymore , it'll take around 12/15min.
Split the vanilla pod in half, scrape out the seeds and place both in a saucepan and add the milk and the chestnut puree. Bring to the boil.
Beat together the eggs and the sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the flour and the hot milk. Mix and return to the pan. Bring the mixture back to the boil and cook for a further 3 minutes, stirring continually. Pour into a bowl and cover with cling film. Set aside in a cool place for 1 hour then whisk the pastry cream until smooth. Transfer to a piping bag and set aside.
«Oven temperatures can vary quite dramatically.try difference temperatures until you get it right. »