Learning to make macarons was such a great experience. I've been trying out new flavours sometimes with success sometimes not, but I'm far from admitting defeat....
A few people have asked me for the recipe so here it is, with the tips that I learnt !!
There are lots of things that can go wrong, and there is a lot of trial and error with flavours, oven temp and timings but for me it is all part of the fun of learning what works and what doesn't.
75g aged egg whites
50g fine/caster sugar
135g powdered/icing sugar
90g finely ground almonds / almond flour (sieve the almonds and only use the finer grains)
powdered food colouring (the powdered bit is important !!)
Separate the eggs and age 2/3 days ahead by putting the whites in a bowl in the fridge. Cover the bowl with cling film and pierce the top a few times.
Take the egg whites out of the fridge for 2-3 hours.
Sieve the almonds and icing/powdered sugar together.
Put baking paper over a circular stencil sheet or draw 3.5cm circles on the baking paper, lay out flat on baking sheets.
Whisk the egg whites in a clean, dry and oil free bowl for about a minute and then start slowly adding the fine / caster sugar. Continue whisking until the mixture forms glossy peaks on the whisk. These peaks should stay like peaks when the whisk is turned sideways and shouldn’t droop. Like the first picture - not the second one.
Bake the Macarons at 160C - 180C for about 10 minutes. I know this bit is a little vague but it really depends on the oven you are using. (In my friend's oven it was 180C but in mine at home its 150C with the fan. ) I always bake one sheet at a time as he more things you have in the oven the more difficult it is to get the temperature and timing accurate.
A small foot or ‘pied’ should form on your macaron (if you dried them out properly) and the top should be hard and the macaron shouldn’t move when you press it slightly.
Take the trays out and allow the macarons to cool before sliding the baking paper off the tray.
When they are completely dry you can peal the macarons off the baking paper. This is a better way than plucking them off as it ensures the bottoms stay intact.
Pair the macarons up by side and start filling them with your ganache. Some people like to pipe the filling but I am happier using a small butter knife to spread it as it gives me a bit more control.
They are best eaten the following day but can stay up to a week in a sealed container or up to a month in the freezer.
So Good luck people, have fun with flavours and don't worry, even the disasters taste good, you can always make an Eaton Mess with Ice cream. Let me know how you get along in the comments below.
Add the powdered food colouring to the egg whites and whisk it in so its fully incorporated, this should only take a few seconds, you don’t want to over whisk.
Quickly fold the ground almonds and icing sugar into the egg whites. push the air out of the almonds by spreading the batter around the side of the bowl and removing it again, scooping the batter from the bottom of the bowl every time you do this. (around 15 times) This step is called Macronnage. Stop when the mixture is firm enough it drips slowly from the spatula and moves slightly in the bowl.
Transfer the mixture into a piping bag with a plain 8mm nozzle and quickly pipe out the Macarons on the baking paper. Its is best to just put the nozzle into the centre of the circle and allow the mixture to fill the circle.
Bang the sheet onto a work surface a few times to expel any air from the macarons.
Dry the mixture out until it forms a skin on the surface. This can be anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours in humid conditions.
Chocolate Macarons - you can replace 25g of the icing/powdered sugar with a good quality chocolate powder and omit the food colouring.
Raspberry Ganache Ingredients
70g white chocolate
35g raspberry puree
Simply combine the chocolate and the puree in a bain marie and slowly mix until all the chocolate is melted. Then cool this in the fridge until hardened.
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