Macaron (pronounced as ma-kah-rhon) is a meringue based sandwich cookie. When I initially read the recipe of Macarons, I thought it was a piece of cake. On reading more, I realised that it wasn’t as it easy as it sounds. Nailing it at the first attempt seemed to be more of a distant dream. Now that’s what I call a “Challenge”. I wanted to nail it at my first try. So I read more….and more…and more..and learnt a few things along the way.
I had saved a few Macarons for my parents who were coming two days later. I knew that Appa would really gorge on it as he is fond of sweets. What surprised me was the sight of Amma tasting a bit and helping to a few more Macarons. Yippeee !!
There are two ways to make the Macarons; the French way and the Italian way. The Italian way involves making sugar syrup and mixing with egg whites, whereas the French Macarons involves mixing dry ingredients into the meringue. Quite a lot people vouch for the Italian technique, but I am yet to try that one. Why did I chose the French one? I felt that was more easy.. 🙂
Quite a lot of French Macaron recipes call for aging the egg whites. There are quite a few who votes against it. I used 2 days old eggs.
PATIENCE is the key to being successful in making Macarons.
Another factor is precision. The precision in measurements, beating, mixing etc leads to a Macaron success story.
I followed the recipe from The Macaron Diaries.
- 130 gms Almonds Powdered
- 160 gms Icing sugar
- 3 Egg whites (room temperature) (90-100 gms total weight)
- 65 gms Caster sugar
- Combine almond meal with pure icing sugar and sift three times. Set aside.
- Take egg whites in a bowl.
- Beat egg whites until foamy.
- Add food colour and add caster sugar, a tablespoon at a time.
- Continue to beat till you get glossy, stiff peaks. You should be able to hold the bowl upside down above your head.
- Fold in half the sugar- almond mixture into the egg whites.
- Mix well.
- Add 80% of the remaining mixture and mix lightly in a circular motion.(This is to make sure that the batter doesnu2019t end up being too dry).
- You may add the remaining almond-sugar mixture if you feel the batter is too thin.
- Spread out the batter against the bowlu2019s sides and then scoop the batter from the bottom and turning it upside down.
- Plop, swipe against side of bowl and repeat.
- To check the consistency of the batter, scoop a spoonful of the batter and let it drop.
- If it slowly drops back into the bowl, lands on the rest of the batter in a small mound and slowly sinks back into the batter, then you are done.
- Do not over fold as this will result in runny batter and consequently, flat macarons without feet.
- Transfer the batter into a piping bag.
- Line the trays with double layers of baking paper.
- If you want to be precise, you may draw circles of 2.5 cms diameter.
- Pipe small mounds of batter onto the paper.
- Tap the tray firmly against the counter. This will dislodge the air bubbles.
- Set the trays for drying. This will take approximately 45 minutes to an hour. I told you. Patience is the key 🙂
- When you touch on top of the mound, it shouldn't stick to your finger.
- Preheat the oven to 150C.
- Once preheated, bring down the temperature to 120-130C.
- Place the tray in the oven and bake for 15 - 20 minutes. The timing may vary.
- To test if they are done, try lifting a macaron from the sheet. If it comes off easily, it is done. If not, place it back in the oven and bake for a few more minutes.
- Transfer them to a cooling rack and cool.
- Once cool, pipe the filling of your choice onto the flat side of a cookie and place another cookie on top.
- The macarons can be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated.