French Macarons

A couple months ago I went to my aunts house for dinner. For dessert she made french macarons from scratch, these were a test run for an event she was going to and wanted to make sure that they would work. I must say that they were  AMAZING. They were these adorable little pistachio macarons and I feel in loooooveee.

About a month later I remembered that I was going to a baby shower that my bf’s mom was hosting and I thought that these little gems would be perfect to add! Now I’m not stupid, I asked her to teach me how to make them as opposed to making them for me because these things are time consuming to make. Not only that, there is no guarantee that they will even turn out. Which is why I decided to not tell any one that I was making them for the baby shower, because if they didn’t turn out then no one would be disappointed (I like to think ahead hahaha).

So the week before the baby shower, I went to my aunts house to learn to make macarons. And I have to say it was fun and almost soothing in a way. But it also took a lot longer than I thought … damn triple sifting! hahaha. I’m also a fool and didn’t think to take photos during the beginning process.

My aunt used a basic recipe, almond flour, aged egg whites, sugar.. the usual suspects. Now, aged eggs whites help reduce the level of moisture which is keeeeeey. So do it because every blog and tutorial that I watched has said to do it. Also weigh your ingredients. What I learned from making these is that, basically all the ingredients are measured by weight, so get a kitchen scale!

Also, I used my aunts Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. It is a god send in the kitchen. I have one back home but this one is much closer and it sure as hell beats my crappy little hand held mixer that is like 15 years old at least. You have to beat the egg whites with the sifted ingredients, adding them gradually to the mix, once it starts to form soft peaks you fold in the eggs and if you choose to colour them then this is when you would add the gel. I recommend the gel over the liquid colour as the liquid could add too much moisture to the mix.

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Once everything is mixed get it in to  piping bag with either a large round hole tip OR just cut the bottom of the piping bag. Now, my aunt has a silicon macaron baking sheet which has ridges to make sure that each one is the same size. I have also seen people trace circles on to parchment paper. When piping try to keep it uniform and with as little air bubbles as possible. After you finish piping out all of the macarons, use a toothpick (or something similar) to pop and smooth over all of the air bubbles. After all the bubbles are popped and smoothed over you have to leave the macarons to “dry out”.

 

The Macarons have to be “dry” to the touch. Basically not sticking to your fingers. This helps to create the beautiful shell like exterior and he cute little “feet” on them. The time for this can range from 30 minutes- 1 hour, and sometimes even longer! It really depends on the environment ie. heat, humidity, etc. Once they are dry they are ready for the oven. I think it a good idea to use a kitchen thermometer to test your oven before putting the macarons in. This just makes sure that it is accurate and you won’t over cook them. My aunt oven runs hot so we reduced the temperature. I know that mine are definitely uneven and not even close to as smooth as they should be, but once I get better at piping they will be even more amazing.

When they have a nice shell and cute little feet on them they are ready to take out! Make sure you let them cool before you try to take them off the pan. Once they have cooled you will be able to test and see if they are done by removing them from the pan. They should come off clean with little to no sticking. If you were to break one open they should be softer on the inside than the outside. Once they are cooled you can fill them! I have seen them filled with all kinds of stuff. You can do jam, ganache, whipped cream, nutella, buttercream, the list is really endless. I chose to do a pistachio buttercream filling to go with the green macarons.

I have to say that I even impressed my self with how well these turned out! 🙂 I am still getting compliments on them and the baby shower was over a week ago! I loved making these and I definitely can’t wait to try it on my own, but first I need to pick up a few kitchen tools.

What are some of your favourite things to make in the kitchen? Or what would you like to see me *attempt next?

 

Here is a link to a a basic recipe which is basically the same as the one that I used to make these: basic macaron recipe

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