Blackcurrant macarons

Blackcurrant macarons

B.I.Y. Bake It Yourself

A delicious treat. I never had a macaron as a child, as I don’t think they were popular in this country back then. But now I can make them, there’s no looking back. They’re not difficult to do once you’ve got the knack. I avoided them for ages, thinking they’d be too hard, but was surprised by how straightforward they are. And you can modify them in loads of fun ways.


Quantity Ingredient

For the shells

Quantity Ingredient
3 large egg whites
30g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
purple gel food colour
210g icing sugar
150g ground almonds

For the filling

Quantity Ingredient
100g mascarpone
75g double cream
100g icing sugar
2 tablespoons creme de cassis

Tool kit

Quantity Ingredient
electric whisk
2 piping bags
4 cm round cutter, (optional)
2 baking sheets or trays


  1. To make the shells, first whisk the egg whites with the caster sugar and vanilla bean paste, using an electric whisk, until very soft peaks form. Add the food colour and whisk until stiff peaks form; these look good with a strong colour, but add as much as you like. (Gel colours won’t alter the texture of the mixture too much.)
  2. In a separate bowl, sift the icing sugar and mix in the ground almonds. Fold in the whisked egg a couple of spoonfuls at a time. Once the mixture is smooth, load it into a piping bag and set aside.
  3. Prepare 2 sheets of baking parchment by drawing around a 4 cm round cutter, or similar-sized template, to give a guide for piping. Draw 20 circles on each sheet, with the circles at least 2 cm apart. Turn the baking parchment over and put each on to a baking sheet or tray, so the pencil markings are on the bottom side, but still visible.
  4. Pipe the mixture on to the parchment, within the circles. Try to keep the piping bag as still as possible when piping and to leave a single dimple in the centre of each blob as you pull the piping bag off.
  5. Firmly slam each baking tray on to a worktop a few times to flatten the dimples caused by the piping, and set aside for 45–60 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 150°C. Bake for 18–20 minutes. Leave to cool completely before peeling away the baking parchment.
  7. Make the filling by beating the mascarpone and cream together with the electric whisk until fully combined. Add the icing sugar and beat together until the mixture just begins to thicken. Add the cassis and continue beating until thickened, then load into a piping bag.
  8. Pipe the filling on to a shell, then gently pop on another shell. Be careful when pressing the top shell on, as they are fragile. Repeat until all the macarons are sandwiched together.


  • This recipe has a level 3 (advanced) difficulty.


  • Once you have got the hang of making the shells, you can flavour them in any way you want. The choices are endless, so experiment away…

    For the shells, try replacing one-quarter of the almonds with ground pistachios.

    Sprinkle the shells with desiccated coconut before cooking.

    Make flavoured creams using different liqueurs or other flavourings.
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