Recipe: Chocolate Orange Fudge Macarons

The last time I tried making macarons, they failed…miserably. It may have been my crappy oven in my student house, it could have been a duff recipe, or perhaps just my lack of baking prowess. Who knows, they were flat,  cracked and actually altogether pretty poor (other than the taste, which was gooooooood!). This time around, about 5 years after completely avoiding them, I was attempting macarons again – fully equipped with everything I needed!

Using a tried and tested recipe from my friend and fellow blogger Hannah at A Bond Girl’s Food Diary, I was certain that if anyone would give me insider knowledge into perfecting macarons, she would (after winning the Bake Off Bake Along 2015 and studying at Leith’s, she’s got the credentials!). I adapted her Saffron Macarons with Chocolate Ganache recipe to fit with my Chocolate Orange Fudge theme that allowed me to experiment with the delicious packet of fudge I’d been sent by The Devon Fudge Company last week. Determined not to let macarons defeat me again, I carefully followed Hannah’s instructions, substituting a few flavours here and there, and hey presto – they worked!

Recipe Chocolate Orange Fudge Macarons 4

Notes (Hannah’ standard macaron notes):

  • This recipe will make 25 paired macarons, although this obviously depends on how big you pipe them. I halved the quantities and managed to make 12 pairs.
  • You don’t necessarily need to age your egg whites, just maybe don’t use your own chicken’s eggs, or ones you bought within the last day or two. Do however start with them at room temperature.
  • To make the piping easier, use lots of space between your macarons, draw circles on your baking paper around an egg cup or cookie cutter and then flip it over to give you a guide. The mixutre will settle out a bit so try to pipe them slightly smaller than your circles using a 1cm round nizzle.

Recipe Chocolate Orange Fudge Macarons 2



for the shells

200g white caster sugar
75ml hot water (from a hot tap is fine, but boil a kettle if you like)
200g icing sugar
200g ground almonds
1 tbsp cocoa powder
160g egg whites (divided into two bowls of 80g each)
Pinch of salt

for the ganache filling

200g good quality 70% dark chocolate (I used Green & Black’s)
300g double cream
100g The Devon Fudge Company Chocolate Orange Fudge
a good pinch of sea salt

to decorate

50g Fudge, cut into small squares

Tiny bit of icing sugar mixed into a smooth paste with water (for sticking your fudge to the top)


Recipe Chocolate Orange Fudge Macarons 5


Method (In Hannah’s words, as they were really helpful!):

  1. Get out three baking sheets and line them with parchment (or silicone). Pop your water and caster sugar in a saucepan, stir it gently together with a wooden spoon, and put the pan on a low heat to dissolve the sugar (starting with hot water speeds this up). While that’s happening, pop your almonds, icing sugar, and cocoa in a food processor and blitz for 1 minute. Scrape the sides down, then blitz for an additional minute. Pass the sugar, nut, and cocoa powder through a sieve into a large bowl. You might be left with some chunkier almond mixture in the sieve. Chuck this away, don’t force it through – you want smooth macarons.
  2. If your sugar has dissolved into your water (the liquid shouldn’t feel gritty), turn up the heat on your syrup, stick your thermometer in it, and start to bubble it up to 115 degrees celsius (which is your target). Meanwhile, mix 80g of egg white into your sieved almond mixture with a spatula to make a thick, stiff paste. It will look like there isn’t enough liquid, but keep working it and it will come together. Pop the other 80g of egg white into a clean glass bowl with the pinch of salt and whisk to stiff peaks.
  3. When the sugar syrup hits 115 degrees, pour it into the whisked egg whites in a thin stream while still whisking them on high speed. The mixture will become shiny. Once all the sugar syrup is in the whites, keep whisking for five minutes or so while the bowl cools until you have your stiff meringue mix. Whack 1/3 of the meringue mix into the almond paste and beat it in any old how to loosen it.
  4. Now gently fold the remaining meringue into your macaron batter with a spatula. You need to make sure it’s well incorporated and there are no streaks, but the more you mix it the more air will be knocked out, and the looser the batter becomes. If you don’t mix enough, there will be unincorporated meringue and the batter won’t smooth out when piped. If you go too far, it will run everywhere when piped. You want to be able to lift the spatula up and draw a trail of batter across the surface of the bowl and leave a line which stays there for around 10 seconds, but then gradually disappears back into the body of the mixture. People say it is supposed to look like lava but that’s totally unhelpful to me as I don’t know what lava looks like. Go slowly, one fold at a time, and keep checking it. If in doubt, go for under rather than over mixing, as the process of piping the batter will knock more air out too.
  5. When you are happy with your batter, put half of it into your piping bag and begin to pipe out your rounds. I find it easier to only use half the mix at once or the weight of it makes it come out of the bag very fast, which is tricky to pipe. Piping these just takes practice. Give yourself space, pipe directly down rather than at an angle, move quickly and get into a rhythm. Your batter will spread a little so aim for batter circles slightly smaller than your template circles. Once you have finished piping, pick up each tray, lift it a good few inches off the surface, and drop it straight down. Do this a couple of times. You need to knock out any air bubbles that have accumulated. After this is done, leave your macarons to rest for around half an hour. Once rested, they should have a slight skin. Leaving them for longer – up to a couple of hours – shouldn’t hurt them.
  6. Recipe Chocolate Orange Fudge Macarons 3

    While they are resting, make the ganache. Break your chocolate and fudge into small pieces and pop it in a bowl. Heat your cream in a pan until it’s just steaming and little bubbles are appearing at the edges, then take off the heat, and re-weigh your cream – you need 200g, and some of it will have evaporated in the heating process. Reheat the weighed cream until just bubbling. Pour it onto the chocolate and fudge, add the salt, and leave it alone to sit for a couple of minutes. Beat the mixture until smooth. Leave to firm up to a pipeable consistency in the fridge

  7. When your macarons have rested, heat your oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Bake your macaron shells for around 20 minutes. This is obviously dependent on your oven and the size of your macarons, so keep an eye on them. Check after 17 minutes. When your shells are cooked, they should lift off your baking parchment without leaving much residue behind. If they are leaving lots of very sticky mixture or not lifting off, give them more time. If they are completely dry and hollow then they are over-baked (but will still be yummy when filled). When they are done, get them on a cooling rack and once they are cool enough to touch, take them off the parchment.
  8. Get your ganache out the fridge – it might need a couple of minutes at room temperature to become pipeable, depending on how long it’s been in there. Match the shells of your macarons into pairs of similar sizes. Pipe a circle of ganache onto the base shell of each pair and gently sandwich on the top shell. Mix up your icing, spread a tiny bit on the top of each pair and stick on your fudgey squares.

Really, you should store macarons in the fridge in an air-tight container for 24 hours before eating them to let the shells soften into the filling but my willpower isn’t always up to this.

I was SO impressed that they came out as they did as at points I was convinced it wasn’t going to work (mostly the point where you have a thick almond paste that you are trying to fold egg whites into!!) The flavour of the chocolate orange really came through and the fudge gave the ganache the smoothest tastiest consistency! Thank you to Hannah for the wonderful recipe, and to The Devon Fudge company for the fudge inspiration. 


***This post is in collaboration with a brand, and I stole most of the recipe from Hannah at A Bond Girl’s Food Diary, but the macarons were baked, photographed, and eaten, by me!***