January 15, 2013

macarons finally

I've made macarons before, both at school and at internship. But making it at home was a whole other deal. Thanks to recipes and detailed explanations from this blog, I was finally able to make them successfully at home.

stiff peak meringue

Here are the key ingredients: almost-stiff peak meringue (mine was a little too stiff) and sifted almond meal + powdered sugar.

The meringue was made with the swiss meringue technique: cooked over a double boiler. 105g of egg whites (roughly 3 eggs worth) and 110g of sugar heated to 110F, then whisked with the kitchenaid.

The sifted dry mixture was 140g of almond meal (Trader Joe's!) 90g of powdered sugar.

macaron "dough"

The dry mix was carefully folded into the meringue with a couple drops of red food coloring. The resulting dough is supposed to be a little more liquid than this, since my meringue was a little too stiff. But it's better to err on the side of too stiff than too soft with this.

macarons piped

Piped the macarons with a pastry bag fitted with a round tip. Then left them on the counter for half an hour to develop a "skin" (basically when you touch the rounds and nothing sticks to your finger).

chocolate for ganache

While the piped macarons were sitting, I made the ganache filling. Melted 4oz dark chocolate, 1/4 cup of nutella (can be omitted) and 2 Tb of butter in a double boiler.

cream for ganache

Then whisked 1/2 cup of heated cream into the chocolate mixture. The ganache mixture was left to cool and solidify a bit. I popped it in the fridge to speed up the process.

macarons baked

Once the macarons were ready, I baked them in a 275F oven for 15-20 minutes. They're ready when they are hard, almost-golden and come off the parchment nicely.

macarons with filling

I paired the macarons based on matching size, then piped the chocolate ganache onto half of the pairs.

macarons finished

Now that I've successfully made macarons, it's time to experiments with colors and flavors!