Macarons anyone???

I can’t believe Masterchef competition is over…  I just love every single series that they have… I watch them religiously.  But I can never watch them live..  I always have something on..  Let it be cake decorating or baking… Mostly my work is in my way so I can only watch the recorded show… Having said that also made me already know sometimes who’s in or who’s out even before I watch them but that’s ok..  I still watch them. lol  Anyway this show has inspired me a lot.  Not only the dessert but also the main course since my husband is a meat lover.  Talking about the dessert there is 2 particular desserts that drive me crazy and make me keep on trying until I succeed…  One is the crème brulee and two is the French macarons.  These are the two of my favorites dessert at all time.  It took me 3 goes for each of the recipes until I succeed…   The crème brulee I made from Masterchef recipe so if you’re interested you can have a look at http://www.masterchef.com.au/creme-brulee.htm

As for the macarons, I’ve tried 3 different recipes each with different results, which taught me a lot. This recipe is the result of those lessons, in a way it is a combination of the best of the techniques and ingredient mix of the 3.  I will give you the recipe in the minute but I just want to point it out to you what’s the most important things in baking macarons.

  1. You have to use the right temperature.
  2. Use aged egg white will give you better result (Age egg white by leaving your egg white in the room temperature for 1 day)
  3. Please make sure you leave the piped macaron in the room temperature for 15 minutes before you put them into the oven.

Here is the recipe:

Makes 35 macarons

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 2 large aged egg whites, room temperature
  • Pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar

MACARON VARIATIONS

  • Chocolate: Substitute 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder for 1/4 cup of the almond flour.
  • Vanilla Bean: Add 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped, pod reserved for another use.

SUGGESTED FILLINGS FOR MACARONS

  • Chocolate: Dark Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache recipe that I learnt from Planet cake…

– 50ml pure cream

– 100gr dark couverture chocolate ( I use couverture chocolate but you can substitute with

cooking chocolate)

– Put the chocolate pieces in the stainless steel bowl.

– Put the cream in a saucepan and bring to boiling point.  Pour the cream over the chopped chocolate and mix with hand mix until the ganache is smooth.

  • Vanilla Bean: white chocolate buttercream (You can find the recipe in my red velvet cupcake recipe).

Directions

  1. Put icing sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 3 times.
  2. Preheat oven to 140 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add caster sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.
  3. Transfer batter to a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain round tip, and pipe 2cm round and 2.5cm apart on baking sheets, dragging piping tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.
  4. Put the macarons in the oven for 15 minutes.
  5. Let macarons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack. (If the macarons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macarons.)
  6. Sandwich 2 same-size macarons with the filling.

There are a few photos from my experiment.  As you can see below that the macarons cracked since I lost track of time I didn’t leave the piped macaron in the room temperature for 15 minutes.  That’s what happens when you’re trying to do multi-tasking… lol…  So make sure you time it.

Happy baking and don’t forget to let me know how you go.