It’s been a while since I’ve really baked anything, so I decided to go for something a bit more technical. I made French Macaroons! And I didn’t completely ruin them! Well, I didn’t completely ruin the second batch!
I was really excited to try this recipe, even though I’ve only ever had macaroons once (just from a local grocery store). I wasn’t sure of the texture or even if I understood the process, but I pressed on anyway. Turns out, macaroons aren’t as difficult as I anticipated.
I started off with two different recipes because I wanted to compare them to see if I could gather any tricks to make it easier. I ended up using the macaroon recipe from The Telegraph and the filling recipe from BBC Good Food. I think that overall, they worked together quite nicely.
My major blunder was early in the process. I didn’t read the recipe correctly. I read it as essentially, “sift the almond flour with the confectioners sugar and then slowly add it to the egg whites as they’re whipping up”. When in reality, there’s also caster sugar added, and that is what get’s added to the egg whites, but only after they’ve been whipped up. With the first batch, I had just started to get foam from the eggs before I began adding the sugar and flour mixture and proceeded to whip it for about 6 minutes before I realized that I’d just made a sugary goo. I quickly made a new batch and let the whites whip up into soft peaks before adding extra caster sugar to help them get stronger. Now, here’s where I’m not sure if I’ve made them perfectly yet. I had read in an article that you can over-whip the whites and then it’ll clump oddly when you try to add in the sugar and almond flour. That’s what happened to me, but I went with it anyway because I figured that if they were going to be massively ruined, I’d at least know why. The batter ended up pretty gooey, especially when I added a tiny bit of food coloring gel (which I’ve never used and I apparently didn’t use enough of). I then piped it onto a baking sheet and ended up with a variety of sizes.
I think they would have turned out better if I had a bigger piping tip. I didn’t realize that my largest size was a 5, when in reality I needed a 9 or 10. I also realized as I was squeezing the bag with a lot of force (due to the small tip) that the mixture was spilling all over the back of my hand and it was starting to dribble onto the paper. I ended up rushing more than I should have and therefore ended up with major discrepancies in size.
One thing that I was really surprised about was how quickly they cook. The recipe said that it would be about 10 minutes until they were done, and they absolutely were. I took them out and they had a skin and feet and I was so excited. Now, are they technically perfect? Probably not. Was I still proud of how I did? Definitely.
Anyway, for the filling I made a raspberry jam (also from scratch) and essentially a chocolate ganache.
I was way too impatient to let the jam set and the chocolate cool down before assembling so the majority of my finished macaroons look like a mudslide, but I did get one or two beautiful ones!
Overall, I’m super proud of myself. This was a recipe that I had been dying to try for a very long time, but I had been too afraid of ruining them. There’s definitely room to improve them, but I’m still really happy with what I’ve accomplished.