Macaroons

Macaroons… I have been striving for perfection with these little buggers for a long time now. And I mean a loooong time. There have been days where I have literally made 3 batches, because they just weren’t PERFECT (see Troubleshooting).

Last week, I reached macaroon happiness. Then I dropped the box I was carrying. And achieved macaroon squash.

Here are a couple of my success stories:

Chocolate and raspberry macaroon

Lemon macaroon – approximately 10 minutes pre-drop

  • 110g egg whites (whites from approx 3 large eggs)
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 125g ground almonds
  • 175g icing sugar

METHOD

  1. Weigh the egg whites. I try to use Two Chicks when I can find it, so I don’t end up with a million egg yolks to use.
  2. Whisk the egg whites like you would a meringue.  As the mixture comes to soft peaks begin adding the caster sugar a third at a time until it’s all worked in and smooth and glossy.
  3. At this point, add your food colouring. I prefer to use gel colours, so it doesn’t change the consistency of the mixture too much.
  4. Sift half of the almond and icing sugar into the meringue mixture.
  5. Fold this in using a metal spoon or spatula.
  6. Sift and fold in the final half of the almond and icing sugar.
  7. Fold until the mixture has just combined.
  8. Pop the mixture in a piping bag with a wide nozzle, and pipe onto a baking sheet with circles drawn on it. OK you don’t have to draw circles on the baking sheet, but I’m a fuss pot.
  9. Now the fun part – bang the baking trays on a surface to remove the air pockets in the macaroons.
  10. Leave the UNBAKED macaroons on the side for between 30mins-1hr. A type of ‘skin’ will form on the top that you can lightly touch.
  11. Put the macaroons in a pre-heated oven at about 120-140C (depending on your oven) for about 15 minutes. If the macaroons don’t look done, don’t be afraid to pop them in the oven again with the door slightly ajar, so they don’t burn. I prefer to go for a lower oven temperature, and a longer baking time than that which is always prescribed in the recipe information.
  12. Remove the macaroons from the oven and allow them to cool, still on the tray.  Good macaroons should be smooth and glossy with a good foot and not flat (See photos above and below!)
  13. CAREFULLY peel them from the baking sheet.
  14. Sandwich together with a buttercream or ganache of your choice.
  15. I know its tough, but you should try to leave the macaroons in an airtight container in the fridge for 24 hours. Advice from Laduree should never be ignored!
Slightly adapted from The Pink Whisk – Thanks P!

TROUBLESHOOTING

You can see a few of my errors as they unfolded. Would I ever succeed?

Mixture was too sloppy (I folded it too many times)

Oven too hot, egg whites not stiff enough, and very under baked

Oven was too hot

Mixture too sloppy and the oven was too hot

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