Japanese Zen Garden Dessert - Macaron Cake

April 28, 2021

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

This Japanese Zen Garden Dessert is a combination of macarons and brownies, inspired by the peaceful rock gardens in Japan (枯山水, karesansui). While the main part of the dessert consists of macarons, I used brownies for "soil" and matcha ganache as "moss". I decorated it with round macarons for the "rocks", as well as macarons in the design of sakura flowers and leaves.  

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

I hope this Japanese Zen Garden Dessert brings you a sense of peace - much needed in today's tumultuous times. Keep calm, take deep breaths, and welcome some sweetness in your life 🍵

by Sumopocky

Macaron Ingredients
[For Macaron Shells] 
Meringue: 70g of Egg whites + 90g of Castor sugar
80g of Almond flour
80g of Powdered/icing sugar
Food colouring (refer to Step 4)

[For Macaron Filling]
Select your macaron filling here

Macaron Directions
[For Macaron Shells] 
1. Make the meringue. In a bowl, beat the egg whites on low speed using an electric mixer until it is white and frothy (approximately 1 minute). Gradually add the sugar 1/4 at a time. When the first addition of sugar has completely dissolved (approximately 1 minute later), increase the mixer speed to medium and add until all the sugar has been incorporated. Continue to beat until stiff peaks form.
2. Sift the almond flour and icing sugar to the meringue.
3. Begin macaronage. Using a spatula, start the macaronage process by folding and lightly scraping the top of the batter. Continue until the wet and dry ingredients just start to become combined. In other words, you can't see traces/clumps of almond flour/icing sugar in the meringue. At this point, the batter should still be quite tacky.
4. Refer to the table in Step 5 to portion batter in different colours. For decoration, scoop out quantity according to table, add food colouring, continue to macaronage until you get a molten-like mixture and drips down like a ribbon when lifted. and transfer to a piping bag with a small tip. 
5. To the remaining batter, continue to macaronage until you get a molten-like mixture and drips down like a ribbon when lifted. Then transfer this grey batter to piping bags with tip approximately 0.5cm diameter. Note: quantities in table are estimates only, please adjust accordingly if needed
For Decoration

White (1 tsp)
Pink (3 tbsp)
Green (3 tbsp)

Main Batter

(remaining batter)
6. Pipe out shells onto parchment paper. Please refer to video above for demonstration.
7. Let the shells dry in a non humid place or an air conditioned room. You should be able to touch it gently with the tip of your finger without it sticking.
8. While waiting for the shells to dry, preheat the oven to 150°C. Bake the large shells & small shells in separate batches. Remove the smaller shells after 15 minutes, and the larger shells after approximately 20 minutes
 9. Let shells cool and pipe with your desired filling. I piped mine with matcha, dark chocolate and earl grey ganache. 

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

Brownie Recipe
You can use any brownie recipe for this dessert. You will only need one serving of brownie (approximately 8x8x2cm size), so enjoy the remaining brownies separately! 😊 Here's my brownie recipe that I used (without the walnuts). 

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

Watch my video for details on how to assemble this Japanese Zen Garden dessert. 

Japanese Zen Garden Dessert

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