- In a large bowl, combine the icing sugar, ground almonds, cocoa powder and spices.
- In another bowl, whisk the egg whites with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sugar while whisking until firm peaks form and the meringue is shiny.
- Add the meringue to the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, mix until shiny and sticky. The mixture should be smooth and should drop slowly from the spatula. Let sit for 5 minutes to thicken slightly.
- With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C). Line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.
- Transfer the meringue mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a ½-inch (1 cm) plain tip. On the baking sheets, pipe macarons about 1-inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, spacing them about 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart. Tap the bottoms of the baking sheets on a work surface two or three times to slightly flatten out the macarons. Let sit for 20 minutes to let the tops of the cookies dry out slightly. This step gives the macarons their distinctive smooth tops and protruding rims.
- Bake one sheet at a time for 20 minutes. Let cool completely, about 1 hour. Gently peel the macarons off the baking sheets.
- Meanwhile, place the chocolate in a bowl. Place a sieve over the bowl.
- In a pot, gently heat the cream, maple syrup and spices. Remove from the heat and let the flavours infuse for 5 minutes. Bring to a boil. Strain the cream over the chocolate. Let sit for 2 minutes without stirring.
- Whisk until shiny and smooth. Cover with plastic wrap. Let cool until the ganache is a spreadable consistency, about 2 hours at room temperature or 1 hour in the refrigerator.
- Transfer the ganache into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip. Cover the flat bottoms of half of the macarons with the ganache. Close with another cookie to form into a sandwich. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 8 hours to soften the macarons, or you can freeze the cookies at this step, if desired. Let sit at room temperature before serving.