French-style macarons-a mixture of egg whites and ground almonds sandwiched together with a flavoured filling-are among the most decadent of desserts. Test your cooking skills with this delicious chocolate macarons recipe.
Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F/Gas 2). Line 2 baking trays with baking (parchment) paper.
In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat the almond meal, icing sugar and cocoa on low speed until combined. Pass the mixture through a sieve onto baking paper.
Whisk eggwhites until foamy. While beating, gradually add the caster sugar and beat until soft peaks form and the sugar is dissolved. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the almond mixture into the eggwhites, one-third at a time.
Transfer the mixture to a piping (icing) bag fitted with a 1 cm (½ inch) plain nozzle. Pipe 4 cm (1½ inch) rounds onto the prepared trays, allowing room for spreading. Leave to rest for 30–60 minutes to allow a skin to form.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until puffed, firm to touch and crusted a little. Cool for 10–15 minutes on the trays, then transfer to wire racks.
For the filling, bring cream to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat, add the chocolate and stand 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Let stand at room temperature or chill for 10 minutes until the mixture is spreadable. Sandwich cooled macarons together with the filling.