Macaron Party

About a year ago, a friend and I decided to make macarons in preface to a group dinner party.  After reading through the recipe when she showed up, it was one of those moments where I realized exactly how much of a production macaron making could be.   The macarons turned out… okay — I mean, they were pink and tasted good, but if we’re being perfectionists, the shells had started to crack and they weren’t exactly sized very evenly.

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A year later, in my own kitchen, we decided to celebrate that same friend’s birthday by doing macarons part deux.  This time I assiduously studied allll the steps, read them a few times through, printed out the directions and made notes.  It was like prepping for finals.

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I aged the whites, made sure we had all the pastry bags and tips and even made an extra filling (chocolate ganache) instead of the one that was in the recipe I’d read.  Food Nouveau has a wonderful recipe that has step by step instructions on how to make the perfect macaron.

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I basically used this one but added some vanilla extract, and then used both buttercream and dark chocolate ganache fillings.

I didn’t quite manage to capture all the steps since I was rather nervous about making sure the eggs white peaks did not collapse and that the shells didn’t crack while baking.

But the rest of the baking went well and the macarons were so good that we couldn’t stop eating them!

Ingredients

3 egg whites (from large eggs), separated at least 24 hours in advance and kept in the refrigerator
210 g powdered sugar
125 g almond meal
30 g regular granulated sugar

Directions

  1. Measure the powdered sugar and almond meal and put them in the bowl of your food processor. Finely grind the two together for a minute or two. Stop the processor, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, and process again for a minute.
  2. Put the egg whites in a cold stainless steel bowl. Start beating them at medium/high speed with your mixer. Once they start to get bubbly and white and you see the whisk is lightly leaving marks, add a tablespoon of the granulated sugar.
  3. Continue beating and add the remaining sugar slowly over the next minute or two. The eggs will now be white and fluff but not stiff enough. Continue beating at high speed until peaks form.
  4. Fold the dry ingredients into the egg whites, slowly a bit at a time.
  5. Transfer the batter into a pastry bag with a 1/2″ tip, and pipe into 1″ circles on a parchment sheet covered baking sheet.  Let them rest for at least 20 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Once the maracons have rested for 20 minutes, bake for 14 minutes.
  7. Let the macarons rest for at least 10-15 minutes out of the oven, and then fill with whichever filling you would like!

Adapted from Food Nouveau.

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