Macarons

That was one time when everybody put colourful macarons photos in their facebook that they have just eaten. I was attracted to their shape and expensiveness that I decided to try to make it myself. I waited until the autumn break before spending my whole day working on it. My first trial was an epic fail. I used a totally wrong method of mixing the egg whites so I ended up having a ‘cotton-candy like biscuit’ rather than a perfectly crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside macarons.

Basically, the basic macaron recipe is relatively easy. However, there are few steps u need to consider to make perfect macarons. Mine is not perfect yet.

The recipe is from fr Chef Keiko.

The Basic Macaron Recipe
Gives 20 pieces

INGREDIENTS:
Egg white 80 g (~ two large eggs)
Sugar 110 g
Icing sugar 100 g
Almond powder 100 g

METHOD:
1. Whisk the egg whites in a large clean bowl with your electric mixer. When foamy, add 1/3 of the granulated sugar and continue whisking for a few minutes. Add another 1/3 of the sugar and whisk until the egg white is stiff. This takes a few minutes, so be patient. Add the remaining sugar and keep whisking until you have a perfectly firm and shiny meringue.

2. Next, sift the almond powder and icing sugar and gently fold half of it into the meringue. A rubber spatula is the right tool for this.

3. Add the remaining almond powder and icing sugar and fold them into the meringue, as well.
Then, mix more rapidly until the batter is smooth and shiny.

4. I just wanted to stress that the consistency is really important. There’s not much you can do wrong with macarons, but if you don’t get the consistency of the batter right, you will get chewy or flat, dry and crispy “cookies”. As described before, fold the dry ingredients into the meringue. Then, mix more rapidly. If you beat too much, the batter will be too runny and the result will be chewy macarons. If you stop too early, the macarons will have an irregular surface and may even tear during baking.
You can subscribe to Keikos website to watch the amazing macarons videos made personally by Chef Keiko.

5. Fill your pastry bag with the batter and pipe out the macaron shells onto a silicon baking sheet (6 mm = ¼ inch pastry tube, macaron diameter 2.5-3.0 cm = 1 inch). I recommend using a silicon baking sheet. If you don’t have one, use a non-stick baking paper, instead. Put the shells aside and let them dry at room temperature.
The shells are ready for baking, when the surface no longer sticks to the finger when touched. You can speed up this process by using a hair dryer if you don’t want to wait so long or if you live in a country with very humid air. If you don’t wait long enough and no skin has formed, the macarons will tear during baking. Another reason for this kind of “defect” is that the bottom temperature in the oven is too high (compared to the upper temperature).

6. Bake the macaron shells in the pre-heated oven for 13-15 minutes at 160°C (320°F). Let the macarons cool down and use a spatula to carefully remove them from the baking sheet. Sort the macaron shells into pairs of similar size.

NOTE: To make the pink macaron shells, mix food coloring into the meringue, i.e. before adding the dry ingredients, until you get the desired color.

To make the chocolate macaron shells you need to slightly change the basic recipe as below:

Egg white and granulated sugar (see basic recipe)
Icing sugar 90 g
Almond powder 80 g
Cocoa powder 30 g
Sift the dry ingredients together twice before folding them into the meringue

Macarons Filling

1. Jam
Spread your favorite raspberry jam on one macaron shell and sandwich with another shell of similar size.

2. Dark chocolate ganache

INGREDIENTS:
Dark couverture chocolate 50 g
Heavy cream 50 g
Butter 15 g

METHOD:
1. Bring the heavy cream to a boil, then gently stir it into the chopped chocolate.
2. Stir until the chocolate is fully melted. Next, add the butter to the chocolate and mix until fully incorporated.
3. Put the ganache aside for cooling.

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