Today was an adventurous baking day in the kitchen!
I’ve been wanting so badly to attempt to make these cute little french deliciousnesses for a few months but didn’t have all of the ingredients I needed to even try to begin.
Months ago, I bought a book, Les Petits Macarons, to try to learn how to make macarons, but it wasn’t a surprise when I opened the book and had absolutely no clue where to start.
I attempted to use the book for the first batch, which ended with some yummy-tasting, mishapen, slightly burnt, cracked, flat cookies. They were good but they were NOT macaron shells. FAIL.
There were a few things I did wrong that I realize would have (and did) changed the outcome of my shells:
- I used almond MEAL which needed to be ground up into a finer, more powdery texture.
- My egg whites were not meringuened (I think that’s a word?) but rather I just folded them into the almond meal mixture. This made the batter EXTREMELY runny.
- I piped the shells WAY BIGGER than I had meant to due to the runny-ness of the batter.
SO after this failed attempt #1, I looked to the internet. Bloggers are always writing about their trials and errors and posting the recipes that actually worked for them. I found The Tart Tart.
This shell recipe is A THOUSAND TIMES EASIER to understand than the $15 book I had purchased, and makes macarons feel so much less complicated to follow.
The only ingredients I really ended up needing was:
- 3/4 cup of Almond Meal,
- 1 cup Confectioner’s Sugar
- 2 Large Egg Whites, and
- 3 tbsp Granulated Sugar.
SUPER EASY, RIGHT?! CLICK HERE to follow the recipe I used for my Almond Macaron shells!
If you’re feeling too lazy to click on the link, I will quickly summarize the recipe.
- Combine the almond meal and confectioners sugar into a food processor or by using a handheld immersion blender. (A food processor most likely works better/faster, but I (and coincidentally the blogger on The Tart Tart, only own an immersion blender, which happened to work quite well anyway).
- Sift mixture into a large bowl.
- Using a standing mixer w/ a whisk attachment, whisk egg whites in mixer bowl at speed 4 for 3 mins, speed 7 for 3 mins, and speed 8 for about 1-2 extra mins
- Add almond mixture to the now meringue in mixing bowl and combine using a J-stroke (up through the middle, over to the side, turn bowl, repeat). At first it will feel like the meringue and the almond mixture isn’t combining at all. Just keep going :)
- Once fully combined, it’s time to pipe the mixture onto your baking sheets.
A few piping tips when making your macaron shells:
- DEFINITELY use a piping bag with a tip if you can get your hands on one.
- Before piping, print out a shell template to help with your spacing. I used this one.
- Pipe the shells from the inside out. Meaning DO NOT use your piping bag and create little circles and fill it by spiraling in. (I made some pretty silly shaped shells by doing it this way). Start in the middle, and squeeze until the circle is full and about 1/4 in in height.
- After you are done piping your shells, place them in a 300-degree F preheated oven for 15 mins. When they have finished cooking they will be a dome-shape with little “feet” (shown in picture below).
Needless to say, I perfected my macaron shells in my second attempt!
After your shells have been baked into perfect little circles, it’s time to choose your filling.
There are SO MANY options for the filling of macarons. You can google pages and pages of recipes or you can use something ready-made! For my first time, I used Nutella because it tastes good with just about anything & everything. You can also use pre-made frosting or even fruit jams to fill yours! I recommend piping your filling onto the shells so that they look pretty. Don’t overfill unless you want some messy cute little delicate pastries!
That’s about all I have to say about my adventure today. Post comments or ask questions if you’d like!
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