French macarons, what can I say? I haven’t really jumped on the bandwagon for these little circles of enchantment. After failing once before trying to make them I’m a little embarrassed to say I kind of gave up which is not like me. They came out all wrinkly on top and just looked more like a meringue than a macaron.
I like to try and post as frequently as I can to my blog and now I’m understanding I feel like that because I actually really enjoy it, so this morning I was racking my brain to come up with a post for today. The macaron came into my thoughts and after doing some reading about them I found a recipe and got started. I must admit to rushing the recipe and again they came out of the oven peaked and as they cooled cracks appeared. Failed again….
It was still fairly early and this time I felt like trying again! I looked for another recipe and found a great tutorial about making macarons from AmberLee. Her blog, Giverslog is packed with great recipes and her own macarons looked awesome. After reading her list of tips and troubleshooting I set out once again to try to conquer my macaron misgiving. I’m happy to say that third time lucky worked for me. The biggest change I made was to leave the macarons out to dry far longer than I had been doing previously. This is the stage where after piping them onto your cookie sheet they will become dull looking and develop a skin on top. This skin prevents the insides pushing up when baking and helps keep the bubbly part called the foot around the bottom of the macaron. Previously I had been leaving them out to dry for about 15 minutes but this time I waited almost a full hour before putting them into the oven.
I feel now that I can go on and experiment with some more flavors and unique fillings without the cracked meringue cloud following me. I used a white chocolate ganache flavored with peppermint as a filling for these and they were pretty darn good!
Here’s the recipe adapted from Giverslog: Yield about 20 shells,
1 Cup of confectioners sugar
3/4 Cup of almond flour
2 Large egg whites at room temp
A pinch of cream of tartar
1/4 Cup of superfine sugar (I used granulated)
Sift the confectioners sugar and the almond flour. Whisk the whites on medium until they get foamy, add the cream of tartar and mix a little more.
Add the sugar gradually and when all added crank up the mixer to high and whisk until you get stiff peaks. If you want to color your macaron’s this is where you would add the coloring, a couple of drops.
Take your bowl from the mixer and sift the flour/sugar mixture again into the egg whites. Start folding the mixture with a large flat spatula gently turning about fifty times.
Transfer the mix to a piping bag with a half inch plain tip and start piping onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. I piped to about the size of a quarter and then drag the tip to the edge quickly to avoid leaving a peak on the macaron.
Once they are all piped, leave them sitting at room temp for at least 45 minutes until you see them become dull on top. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and when your ready to put them in drop the temp to 325 degrees. Put them in the oven making sure the door is cracked open with a wooden spoon handle. Bake for 10 minutes turning once after 5 minutes. Leave to cool for a couple of minutes when they come out of the oven and then gently lift the whole paper sheet form the tray to your counter.
Have your filling ready and fill once they are cool.
Recipe for white chocolate ganache adapted from The LA Times:
10 oz of white chocolate chips
2/3 Cups heavy cream
1 1/2 tbs of butter divide into 3 pieces
Peppermint to flavor
Heat the cream in a pot until just boiling, add it to the chocolate chips in another bowl and let sit for 2 minutes. Stir with a spatula until smooth. Add the butter and stir again until smooth and shiny. I added 1/4 tsp of peppermint extract at this point. Keep stirring periodically to avoid lumps until cool and ready for piping.
Grab two shells and pipe the ganache on one shell, you wont need a lot as these are really sweet. join the two sides together and eat!
I’m a horrible scratch baker… How about you just whip up about 2 doz of these bad boys and I’ll be by with some $$ and a big glass o’ milk!!
Fantastic color and taste of them..perfect.First crunchy and than soft.Yummy:)
Wow, these are really beautiful!
I have yet to attempt these. Now I am motivated
Those are gorgeous, Gerry! I do want to try macarons, even though I can’t really eat them. I am so glad you worked up the courage to try again.
They look amazing! I don’t have the patience to wait when I’m making them. Next time I’ll try the long wait. Thanks for sharing.
Gerry…these are gorgeous! I love it when our blogs push us to confront our personal food/cooking challenges. Peppermint is my favorite flavor during the upcoming holiday season.
Third time is a charm. They look great and I love you photos. The delicate pink and white cookies look great next to the dark wood.
I have yet to try my hand at macarons. In fact I had never even eaten one until this summer. Do you store them in the fridge? How long do they keep?
Gloria, Thanks! I didn’t store these in the fridge and I probably wouldn’t due to the moisture. I might be wrong but I think they’d get soft. The web site I linked to gives great storage instructions though and even mentions freezing them!
Gerry Can I please have this whole box……..Love the pink cuties.
Are you kidding me?? THESE ARE GORGEOUS!!!!!!!! Macaroons is one thing I’d rather leave to the “experts”! I’m BEYOND impressed…GORGEOUS JOB!
These pastel pink macarons look so delicate Gerry, the opposite of your macho self! LOL. Well done, my friend, for mastering these temperamental babies. I made them 8 or 9 times before I even got my first perfect feet. Next challenge up for you – bad boy-flavored macarons!
I’m so glad you posted this because your experience with macarons mirrors mine. I was just talking with someone about how I paid $2 each for these tasty morsels. I am definitely giving them another go after Thanksgiving. Yours look professional. Well done.
Looks like you have shaken off whatever caused the other mishap. Love macarons and the mint so so perfect for the holidays. What’s next beer flavored ones perhaps, lol.
Arlene, $2!! whoa..
Gina, maybe not beer but you got me thinking now about some kind of booze that might work..
Alpana, theyre gone :(
Donna, thanks!! :)
OMG! These are amazing! I had the same experience as you the first time I tried making Macarons. But, unlike you, I haven’t mustered up the courage to try again. They look absolutely perfect.
Thanks for the link to Giverslog. And, I think you have mastered the macaron!
I’ve recently decided that white chocolate ganache is THE best filling in macarons.
I love the pale pink colour and peppermint ganache sounds wonderful. Lovely feet too !
Wow, those look so professional!
Macarons is something I have never tried. Yours look so professional. I am really tempted I am telling you to try them myself!
Oh my goodness, my mouth dropped open when I saw these beauties! I love them and you’ve given me the confidence to try them myself! Thanks!
Congratulations! These look fantastic. I have not tried making them yet but appreciate your insight – helpful tips are the best! They are beautiful – and I bet they’re delicious too.
Holy cow! Make us all look like poop cooks, why don’t you :) I’m still terrified to even try. Yours look beautiful
those are are some beautiful macarons. thanks so much for the shoutout! your blog is amazing by the way. and making me very hungry.
Those look pretty dang delicious and professionally baked!
Oh, my gosh, these are PERFECT!!! I need to attempt these again…and try your fabulous flavor combination. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving~
Ooh – I adore chocolate peppermint and in pretty pink like that, these are beautiful. Your macarons are so well executed, gorgeous to look at. Good idea on letting them dry out longer. Thanks for your lovely comment on le blog and glad you liked the STV demo, even if I was unbelievably nervous. No stopping you now – you’ll have so much fun experimenting with an infinite combinations of flavours. Enjoy yourself!
Have a super Thanksgiving – sounds great if there are plenty macarons chez vous! :-)
How gorgeous. The chocolate and peppermint combination is a favorite of mine and I would show no restraint if they were in my kitchen. They are perfect. I hope youhave a great holiday. Blessings…Mary
They are beautiful! Love the peppermint.
Oh my gosh, these are beautiful! I admit I haven’t attempted to make macarons because so many people say they’re so hard and I’m intimidated… these look so pretty though. And the peppermint is perfect for the holidays. Great job!
Clark says he doesn’t want to go to Restaurant Club anymore…’too much estrogen.’
These macarons are gorgeous. Would love for you to share this with us over at foodepix.com.
Gerry these look amazing! I have never tried making macarons, and to be honest before I started blogging I wasn’t even sure what they were!
I’m so impressed by your macarons – they look absolutely professional. I adore a good macaron (my dad introduced me to them as a kid), but I’ve never actually tried making them. I have so many flavor combinations in mind but I think I’ll start taking notes from you… they look and sound amazing.
These look so perfect! I’m not the biggest hero at making macarons myself :( But a new year is approaching and I’m going to find new courage!
They look too pretty to eat!
I am way too novice a baker to even attempt these. Yours are just lovely.
would it be alright if I use vanilla extract instead or would it be better without any flavoring? I plan on having like crushed peppermint candy cane or something on top (like you would find on a white chocolate peppermint pretzel) and having a round pretzel in the center too. My way of re-defined holiday pretzel… could really use your help thanks!
Hi Morgan! you could use vanilla but be careful if you sprinkle crushed candy on top and then bake, I tried that and the candy dissolved :(