several of my readers have benefited from my thing about trying out obscure, results-driven baking, which has included such weirdos as the buche de noel, spatchcocked turkey, and last but not least, the macaron cookie (not to be confused with the macaroon, a coconut heap).
after two or three recipes and watching a youtube video on the proper macaronage (the technique to get the feet to do their thing), i found one that worked for me. so first, the recipe, because we all know how annoying it is to read someone’s life story and 40 million food sponsor ads just to get to the recipe:
- 120 grams egg whites
- 35 grams sugar
- 150 grams almond flour
- 150 grams powdered sugar
- Sugar syrup:
- 150 grams sugar
- 50 grams water
- Leave the egg whites out overnight. Prepare your pans by lining them with parchment paper. I use one large and one medium cookie sheet.
- Sift the almonds and powdered sugar.
- Whip 60 grams of the egg whites to soft peaks. Add the 35 grams sugar. Beat to stiff peaks.
- While that's beating, make the sugar syrup. Mix the sugar and water in a small saucepan and boil it to 230º F. Slowly add it to the egg whites in your mixer. Beat another 10ish mins to cool a bit.
- Mix the remaining 60 gram eggs whiles into the almond flour/powdered sugar mix. It will look like pasty ecru sludge.
- Mix the egg whites into the sludge til it comes together. At this point, add food coloring or flavorings that you want (more almond, peppermint, vanilla, etc.) then macaronage until it looks like magma when you drip it from your spatula.Macaronage by beating the batter against the side of your bowl, spreading it thing against the side.
- Fill a piping bag with your batter, then pipe circles onto the baking sheets. After the first couple, make sure the batter flattens out to a smooth top. If it doesn't, you need to macaronage more. Let your pans sit while your oven preheats to 320º.
- Bake 15-25 mins - it will depend on how big your cookies are. Check by lightly grabbing the top of your cookie to see if the foot moves with it. If yes, it's done.
some BIG TIPS tp make your macarons better:
- buy a kitchen scale and weigh all your ingredients. my recipe has no measurements, just weights. (this also helps find package weights so you can buy your postage at home and stick it in the mailbox.)
- once you start, you’ve gotta go. boom boom boom – all things happen right after another, especially with the eggs whites beating and making the sugar syrup.
- you will need a thermometer to watch the temperature of your sugar syrup.
- if your feet suck, no biggie. still tastes the same!
- make sure your filling is on point. i’ve just got the recipe for the base cookie, so you can customize flavors how you wish. my favorite is adding lemon zest and extract to the cookie, then having a lemon curd and lemon cream cheese filling. my most recent batch was peppermint mocha.
on a related note, other items that have helped me in the kitchen:
- a good knife
- an electric knife sharpener
- a LARGE jellyroll pan. 18×24?
anyway, the technique for making macaron is basically making a meringue and then mixing it with sugar and almond flour. i tried a straight up meringue with eggs and sugar, then found that a swiss meringue (sugar syrup instead of just sugar) makes a better macaron.
one of the things that took a couple tries was figuring out the consistency of the batter. i looked at the macaronage method, which is beating the batter against the side of the bowl, and read somewhere that your batter should be the consistency of magma. once i figured those things out, i liked the results of the feet of the macaron better.
because the feet is what the macaron is mostly about! it’s this little lift in the bottom of the cookie where the air puffs out and makes a little holey base.
and i have FINALLY made a video of the process! here’s the short process, then watch the sped up video.
- line your cookie sheets with parchment paper. i use one large and one medium.
- sift flour and powdered sugar
- measure out egg whites and throw into mixer to come to soft peaks
- once there, add sugar, whisk to stiff peaks
- while that’s whisking, make sugar syrup
- pour syrup slowly into meringue while it’s whisking, then let it keep going for another 10ish mins
- during this time, mix the rest of your egg whites with the flour/sugar mix. it’ll look pasty beige. yum.
- mix/fold the meringue into the beige paste with a spatula, then add in flavorings and food coloring
- then macaronage until magma consistency
- put into a piping bag and pipe circles onto the cookie sheets
- let it sit while your oven comes to 320º
- put in oven for 10-20 mins
- check if done by moving the cookie around and see if the foot moves easily with the cookie
- let them cool, then match up two the same-ish size to make little sandwich fillings with your filling of choice!
here is a 3-minute quicklapse of macaron making!