week 10. oreo macs x oreo buttercream

using my base recipe, I subbed out cocoa powder for the equivalent amount of ground up oreo.

these were perfect. and likely my favorite so far. the taste was amazing and they looked really good! none of them had cracks!!
I feel that I finally found the right rhythm as to how long the meringue should mix for; stiff peaks, but not too stiff and the exterior of the bowl cooled down, but not too much. I was also nervous adding crushed up oreo on top, thinking that they might prevent the shells from baking evenly, but they were totally fine and I'm now completely unafraid to top my macs with fun things.

ingredients | shells

mixture a:                  
oreos - finely ground                              37g

almond TPT*                                                300g
powdered sugar                                        38g

egg whites                                                      73g     

mixture b:
egg whites                                                      73g
salt                                                                       0.5g
water                                                                  50g
sugar                                                                  188g
light corn syrup                                          10g

* TPT means equal parts powdered sugar and another ingredient, in this case it’s almond flour, and you will use 150g of each to equal the 300g.

method | shells

bring all ingredients to room temperature.

use a blender (vitamix does a great job) to grind the oreo cookies (just the cookie, not the creme) until it becomes a fine powder.

I ground up one row of oreos from their packaged, used the right amount for the shells, but reserved the remaining powder as well as the cream to throw in the buttercream later.

from “mixture a,” sift together the oreo powder, almond TPT, and powdered sugar into a large bowl and set aside. (it’s important to sift to make sure everything is very fine).

from “mixture b” whisk the egg whites and salt in a standing mixer with the whisk attachment set to 4 and leave it there while you make a syrup.

make a syrup from “mixture b.” first add the water, then the sugar, then the corn syrup into a small saucepan. pour the sugar in very slowly so that it all gets incorporated into the water, being very careful not to get any on the sides of the saucepan or your syrup can crystallize. do not stir!! stirring can also cause crystallization. just let it do its thing.

heat this syrup on medium until it boils and reaches 248°F. really, don’t stir it!

tip: you can take the chill off the eggs if you hold the bowl over the heating saucepan for a few seconds while swirling it around or whisking it (I like to whisk).

turn up the standing mixer to 8 to create soft peaks while the syrup is still heating up to the right temperature.

to create the meringue, slowly pour the hot syrup along the side of the bowl into the mixing egg whites and let it mix until it’s stiff, but still shiny.

take the egg whites from “mixture a,” plus a spatula full of the meringue and mix it into the sifted oreo powder, almond, powdered sugar mixture that you made earlier. fold this together with a spatula until you form a thick paste.

fold the rest of the meringue into that paste until it becomes glossy and slightly runny. (you’ll know when it’s done when the batter slowly falls off your spatula like a thick ribbon and settles into itself in the bowl after a few seconds. you don’t want it to be any runnier than that because you don’t want the mixture to spread once it’s piped).

scoop batter into a pastry bag fitted with about a 10mm piping tip, and pipe quarter sized bulbs onto parchment paper or a silicone baking mat on a sheet pan.

tip: if a little nub from where you released the piping bag doesn’t settle into itself, you can use a small paintbrush to tap it down.

tap the bottom of the pan a couple times to prevent any air bubbles while baking. (i actually tap it like 30 times because it's fun and it really does get the air bubbles out)

top half of your macs with some of the reserved oreo cookie powder/crumbles.

let your macs sit out for at least 10 minutes before going in the oven. this recipe uses the italian method, and I've read that you really don't have to do this unless you're using the french method, but I did it this time and I think it helped make them sturdier before going into the oven. I plan to incorporate this step from now on.

bake on your oven’s convection setting at 280° for 15 minutes. for the first 5 minutes with the oven door closed, and the remaining 11 minutes with a wooden spoon propping the oven door open a bit.

let cool completely before filling.

ingredients | oreo buttercream

unsalted butter                                        1/2 cup
powdered sugar                                       1   1/2 cup

salt                                                                      1/4 tsp
vanilla extract                                             1/4 tsp

oreos (cookies & creme)                  whatever's left from before

method | oreo buttercream

bring butter to room temperature.

use a hand mixer or paddle attachment on a standing mixer, set on medium-high, to cream the butter until light and creamy.

add the powdered sugar and mix on low until totally incorporated.

add the vanilla extract and salt and beat on medium high for a couple minutes until fluffy.

stir in reserved oreo powder and creme until incorporated, then mix on high for a couple minutes until well combined and creamy.

pipe bulbs of buttercream to fill your mac sandwiches.

refrigerate these guys when you're done. they actually taste better after a day of refrigeration than they do right after baking.

tip: the sizes of all of your shells will tend to be slightly different, so make sure you buddy up your shells to similarly sized partners so that the entire cookie is a consistent size.