Plum Macarons

by Kate on September 26, 2012

Plum Macarons -

When I heard there was a new MacTweets macaron challenge I headed on over to check it out. The inspiration for our macarons this month is seasonal fruit. As summer fades into fall, we welcome a bounty of new flavors. As I’ve mentioned before, this season holds some of my very favorite. Naturally, my mind immediately went to pumpkin and apple. Then I stopped a moment to think about what else is in season now. I had to look no further than our fruit basket to know which road I wanted to take with this challenge. I had a beautiful bowl full of plums.

I decided to make a plum reduction and then fold it into swiss buttercream. I left the shells plain not only because I had flavored the filling but because I am still a novice at making macarons. I have yet to figure out how to flavor shells and not screw up the whole make up of the macaron which would inevitably end in footless disaster. The only flavor I’ve managed is chocolate but I need to get more experimental. Note to self: Figure that out and challenge yourself to make flavored shells next time!



One Year Ago: Carrot Apple Spice Muffins

Plum Macarons

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 10 minutes

1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: 18 cookies

Plum Macarons


    For Macarons:
  • 1 1/2 cups (7 oz) whole almonds, with skins
  • 2 1/4 cups (10 ounces) powdered sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 cups plum buttercream
  • 1-2 drops purple gel food coloring, if desired
  • For Plum Reduction:
  • 2 cups Swiss Buttercream
  • 2 plums, diced
  • 2-3 tablespoons honey, depending on sweetness of the plums


    Make the macarons:
  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Draw 1 inch circles on the paper, about 1 inch apart as a template. 18 circles per sheet.
  2. Place half of the almonds and half of the powdered sugar in a food processor. Process for 30 seconds until finely ground. Pour the mixture into a bowl and repeat with remaining almonds and powdered sugar.
  3. In a bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with a whisk attachment combine the egg whites and cream of tartar. Whisk on high until very stiff peaks form, 3-5 minutes.
  4. Gently fold the almond mixture into the egg whites with a rubber spatula just until combined. Add gell food coloring and fold just until evenly distributed.
  5. Fit a pastry bag with a 1/2 inch round tip and fill the bag with the batter.
  6. Pipe 1-inch circles onto the prepared baking sheets, using the circles as a guide.
  7. Let the cookies stand at room temperature for 2 hours.
  8. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and bake until set but not browned, 10-12 minutes.
  9. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and cool completely on the sheets.
  10. Once cooled, gently lift the cookies off the parchment and flip half of them over.
  11. Make the plum buttercream:
  12. Prepare the Swiss Buttercream
  13. Measure out 2 cups and reserve the remaining buttercream for another purpose. (It freezes great!)
  14. In a small saucepan, simmer the plums and honey until the plums soften.
  15. Stir occasionally, breaking the plums up into small bits. Simmer until the mixture becomes thick and syrupy being careful not to burn it.
  16. Coll the syrup completely to room temperature.
  17. Fold into the 2 cups of swiss buttercream.
  18. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch round tip with the plum buttercream.
  19. Pipe a nickel-size dollop of filling onto half of the cookies and then top with another macaron.
  20. Store refrigerated in an airtight container. Serve at room temperature.
  21. Enjoy!


Plus two hours rest time.

Adapted from Miette

{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristina September 26, 2012 at 10:11 am



Kate September 26, 2012 at 7:30 pm

Thanks Kristina!


ChristineM September 26, 2012 at 3:03 pm

wow, good job!!!! I am scared with the humidity in my house… I hear that will affect the macarons. Love the plum flavor!


Kate September 26, 2012 at 7:27 pm

You know, I’ve heard so many horror stories and had some bad experiences myself but I think if you just have good instruction that makes it easier. BraveTart’s recipe has been almost 100% positive for me and the macaron recipe from the cookbook Miette has been 100%. You should give it a try!


Mardi (eat. live. travel. write) September 26, 2012 at 5:19 pm

They look lovely! LOVE plum. I know what you mean about flavouring the shells, until you feel super confident about the technique it’s risky. I like to use freeze dried fruit powder – adds colour and flavour without changing the recipe too much. I can’t wait to see what you try next.


Kate September 26, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Thanks so much for your comment and the help with how to add flavoring to the shells. I was wondering how I might accomplish that and haven’t looked into it yet. Perhaps for my first attempt I’ll give freeze dried fruit powder a try!


Diana October 4, 2012 at 9:43 pm

Yes, I was going to suggest this. I also use tea. My last macs had a tea bag of rise earl grey and 8g freeze dried raspberry. 🙂


Diana October 4, 2012 at 9:46 pm

Rose not rise


Kate October 5, 2012 at 6:46 pm

Thanks so much for the flavoring tips! I need all the help I can get 🙂 Love the use of tea and raspberry. Sounds divine!


Erika September 27, 2012 at 10:36 am

These are too gorgeous! Your photos are stunning and plum sounds like such a unique, delicious macaroon flavor 🙂


Kate September 27, 2012 at 8:01 pm

Wow! Thank you so much for your lovely comment Erika! I really appreciate that.


Kristen September 27, 2012 at 11:21 am

I just purchased the Miette cakebook and saw the macaron recipe. I’m so excited to see that you’ve had success with them! I’m crossing my fingers that I don’t get hollow shells.


Kate September 27, 2012 at 8:02 pm

I don’t think you will. I’ve used other recipes and had mixed results. The Miette recipe has been 100% successful for me and I’m no pro 😉 Let me know how yours turn out!


Kristen September 27, 2012 at 10:20 pm

I just finished baking them but I don’t think I processed the almonds long enough. Was the batter thicker than other recipes that you’ve made before?


Kristen September 27, 2012 at 10:21 pm

Oh, and the other recipe I did today was the peanut butter cookies but as thumbprints with plum preserves. Those came out perfectly!


Kate September 28, 2012 at 10:51 am

Ooo! I bet that was amazing! I love the sound of peanut butter cookies with plum preserves. I’ll have to give that a try myself!

Kate September 28, 2012 at 10:51 am

Hi Kristen! YES! The better was definitely thicker than other recipes I’ve used in the past. The first time I used this recipe I was surprised. In fact, I said to my husband “I think I screwed something up.” But then feet appeared and no hollow shells so I declared success! I’ve also used almond meal with success in the recipe instead of processing my own. It’s definitely a thicker consistency which had me questioning things but it’s been 100% successful every time so I’ve stuck with it. How did yours come out?


Megan @ The Pink Flour September 27, 2012 at 1:09 pm

Plum macarons…they sound so good! I just posted about how I want to learn how to make macarons – any tips?


Kate September 27, 2012 at 8:06 pm

Thanks Megan! I’m so glad you like them. I have made macarons a few times now and since I started using the Miette recipe for shells I’ve had fantastic results. I’m certainly no pro at making macs yet 😉 I joined MacTweets so that I could practice and get better at them. There’s a lot of good resources on their site too. Mostly, I would just say practice and have fun with it! They’re a stressful little cookie but once you’ve made them a few times you’ll get the hang of it in no time! Oh! And don’t overmix your batter 😉


Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom September 29, 2012 at 12:10 pm

OMG, these look perfect! I’ve always wanted to try baking macarons! These are just beautiful!


Kate October 2, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Thanks so much Alice! I really appreciate that. And you should definitely give macaron making a try. It takes a bit to get the hang of it but they’re so good and well worth it 😉


Lora October 4, 2012 at 11:55 am

I love the color. So beautiful! Plum is always a winning flavor. Flavoring the shells has caused me my share of headaches. It still makes me nervous.


Kate October 4, 2012 at 7:01 pm

Thanks so much Lora! I really need to bite the bullet and experiment with flavoring shells. Nerve wracking indeed! Considering your success with macarons, I feel better knowing it even makes you nervous 😉


RollerScrapper October 9, 2012 at 7:52 pm

What a pretty color, and they sound delicious!


Kate October 11, 2012 at 2:53 pm



Patricia October 13, 2012 at 11:09 pm

One word — no, two: Oh, Yum!! These look amazing! Been wanted to use plums for something, and this is certainly a creative use for them!


Kate October 15, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Thanks Patricia!


Marcie December 17, 2015 at 9:26 am

Hey, My daughter and I want to make this like today. But, we can’t figure out how you got the shells to be lavender. Did you use a food dye? We didn’t see it mentioned in the recipe. Thanks.


Kate December 17, 2015 at 3:46 pm

Yikes!! Yes, I did. I just used a drop or two of gel food coloring. I’m so sorry for the oversight! Thanks for bringing it to my attention.


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