The macaron fad is still very much alive. Maybe it’s here to stay, like fellow sweet stuff – the cupcake. Maybe.

For now, I just like the way it looks, tastes and not to mention the joy you get when your macaron has feet! For those who think I may be bonkers – to achieve the standard beauty of a macaron, it has to have a smooth shell and a ruffled bottom edge which is otherwise known as the feet. A macaron with no feet is like having creme brulee without the caramelised crisp sugar top layer – tastes okay, looks meh and totally unsatisfying to the person making it. A macaron with no feet is also otherwise known as a meringue cookie isn’t it? Which can be a major let-down if you’ve set your mind on making macarons. Trust me, I’ve been there.

I have found that the french method (macarons au blanc monte) of making macarons (which is what I learnt at a course last year) is very unstable and you’re never guaranteed feet success. The italian method (macarons au sucre cuit) which requires the use of hot sugar syrup produces a more stable meringue base for the macaron and success (feet and all) is much more achievable.

Piped and ready...

Yay for feet!

There are so many do’s and don’ts when it comes to making macarons, here are a few which I have come across:

1. Humidity is not a friend. Apparently it causes the mixture to be too damp.

2. No overmixing. When there’s over enthusiasm in mixing the batter, it will cause the macaron to collapse in the oven. Not pretty.

3. Beauty nap. The piped batter needs to be rested before baking. This allows the shells to form a layer and that’s what produces the smooth tops.

4. A clean bowl is a good start. If there’s oil in the mixing bowl, your meringue may not be happy and will not co-operate. It’s a clean freak. What a diva.

5. Age is a good thing. Egg whites that have been aged (left out for a few hours or a day or two – eew) produces meringue that holds their shape better as there’s less moisture in them.

I have also found that rotating the oven trays halfway through baking helps produce more evenly baked macarons. Maybe it’s because I have an oven as temperamental as the macarons. But it’s worked for me so I’m sticking to it.

Generally, the flavour from the macaron is from the filling. I used marmalade and marscapone (just because I had them) for my filling. The bits of orange rind from the marmalade was a nice citrus-y surprise when you’re lucky enough to get them in your little macaron.

Just a few simple ingredients and a whole load of fingers-crossed peering through the oven door and you get these pretty babies. What fun.

MARMALADE CREAM MACARONS

200g almond meal
200g confectioners’ sugar
200g sugar
50g water
150g egg whites, divided into two 75g portions

1. Stack two baking trays on top of each other. Line with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.

2. Process almond meal with confectioners’ sugar in a food processor. Sieve out any large bits of almond.

3. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan. Heat on medium until all the sugar is dissolved.

4. Continue cooking until the sugar syrup reaches 118 C/245 F. While the sugar is cooking, begin whisking the egg whites. They should reach stiff peaks by the time the syrup is at 245 F. If it whips too fast, turn down or turn off the mixer.

5. Turn the mixer speed to low. Carefully pour the sugar syrup in a slow stream into the mixer.

6. Turn the mixer speed to high and whip the meringue for several minutes until it has cooled and appears glossy and firm.

7. In a large bowl, combine the almond meal mixture with the remaining 75g of egg whites until partially combined. It’d look a little gloopy here, but it’s okay.

8. Scoop the meringue on top of the almond meal mixture. Using a spatula , carefully fold the meringue in, trying not to deflate it. The final batter should be thick and flow slowly like magma. Do not overmix.

9. Scoop the batter into a piping bag fitted with a ½” diameter plain tip.

10. Pipe 1 ½” rounds of batter onto the prepared baking sheets. Let the sheets sit for about 20 minutes before baking.

11. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 160 C/320 F.

12. Bake one set of macarons for 15 minutes, rotating once. The cooked macaron should lift off the parchment easily.

13. Let tray cool for a few minutes before removing from the silicone mat or parchment. Let finish cooling on wire racks.

Marmalade Cream Filling

180g marscapone
4 tbsp fine cut marmalade
2 tbsp icing sugar
drop of food colouring (optional)

Simply mix all the above ingredients together well. Taste and adjust sugar amounts if necessary.

Let it chill in the fridge while the macaron shells are cooling to help firm it up a little.

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Join the conversation! 8 Comments

  1. Very nice, great tips.

    Reply
  2. They look so good. You have a beautiful blog!

    Reply
  3. […] for making macarons can be found here, along with tips and tricks. With the cocoa powder, sift it together with the almond meal and […]

    Reply
  4. Hi Vinna :)

    Macarons in the oven, looking OK so far. fingers crossed!!

    Just a question for you… if my macarons always end up with a tail at the end of the piping, and it looks like a nipple (LOL!), does that mean I have over beaten the egg whites?? I always end up having macarons that look like boobies! hehe…

    (You don’t have to reply now, I know you are busy packing for oz!! yay!!)
    XX
    Grace

    Reply
    • Hi Grace, it could possibly be overbeating of the egg whites or it could be the way you pipe them. Do you also bang the tray after piping to get it levelled and release some air bubbles? Sometimes if I have obvious peaks, I use a damp finger to squish it down. Don’t overdo that though. Might turn out ugly :) good luck!!

      Reply
  5. I love marmalade, will definitely be trying this one out!

    Reply
  6. Hi! I’m Anjo from Munchcraft, and I just wanted to let you know that I posted a picture and link of your macaron as part of my eatpraylove series. Because your macarons are awesome and deserve lots of love. And eating. Hope it’s okay? If not, let me know and I’ll take it down ASAP. Thanks! :D :D :D

    http://munchcraft.anjosblogzine.com/2013/02/eatpraylove-day-2.html

    Reply

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About droolfactor

It's all about my gastronomical journeys, and sometimes an inedible thought or two. One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating. ~Luciano Pavarotti and William Wright, Pavarotti, My Own Story This is my personal journey where I devote my attention to eating, cooking, experimenting and taking chances. Anything I come across with a droolfactor worth sharing, it's here. I hope you'll enjoy this journey with me.

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Recipes, Sweet Bakes, Sweet Stuff

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