So this is my last week of biscuits and second attempt at making Parisian macarons.
I will preface this by saying that this blog is about learning – so that means that not everything works our perfectly every time.
My first attempt, as part of a ganache post, was an absolute disaster. They totally bled out during the cooking process and browned too much on the top. I can only put this down to having the oven too hot and also not letting them sit long enough to form their “feet”.
There are so many posts and articles out there about how to make the perfect macaron and one of the best is this ebook – http://issuu.com/helened/docs/demystifyingmacarons
This has basically every tip you’ll ever need to I won’t try to sound like an expert rehashing it all – I’ll just tell you my actual experience.
Starting with basics, macarons are made from almond meal, icing sugar, plain sugar, eggs whites and food colouring. They are essentially meringues, and are derived after the Italian word for meringue “macarone”
The flavour usually comes from the filling which can range from chocolate ganache, jam or buttercream. I had some coffee buttercream leftover from a cake I’d baked over the weekend so decided to make chocolate flavoured macarons to go with it.
Chocolate adds another dimension to macarons because of the cocoa so the recipe is slightly different to the traditional macaron which just incorporated powdered food colouring.
I followed Helene’s advice and adapted the recipe, then set about making the batter.
The first time I made the macarons, I did a lovely job of marking out perfect circles on my baking paper to make sure I had perfectly consistent macarons.
This time I wasn’t expecting them to work so just piped freehand. I let them rest for 1 hour before baking at 150 degrees for 18 minutes.
They looked pretty good going into the oven, but unfortunately didn’t give me the rise I was after. Did I overwork the egg whites? Or perhaps knocked too much air out of them when I mixed in the dry ingredients.
They were also crunchy rather than chewy which was disappointing – overcooked? Too high heat?
While a better outcome that my first attempt, these are far from perfect so I can only hope that practice makes perfect.
Does anyone have any tips for me? I’d like to give them another go sometime soon so would appreciate any advice (over and above Helene’s of course).
On to mousses next week so hopefully they will work out better for me 🙂