I am so excited about this post as I have been obsessed with/ practicing macarons for about the last year. I’ve tried Italian and French methods and many different recipes and I’ve finally found what works for me and I thought I’d share it with you.
I came across an amazing macaron blog, with full written tutorials and videos and I have to say that if you follow the recipe to a T, you will be able to make macarons! It’s called Indulge with Mimi and you have to check her out!
While all the details Mimi gives are very important to making beautiful macarons, the top tips I’ve taken away are:
1) Use a handheld beater. I really battled to get the meringue stiff enough in my big Kenwood mixer and my guess is that the bowl is too big and the egg whites were too shallow to beat up stiff enough for what you need. My little, very old handheld beater did it in about 6 mins.
2) Beat the meringue until very stiff, so that when you stop beating it clumps inside the whisk.
3) Practice and test your oven. Every oven is different. I’ve discovered I get the best results if I remove all trays & racks except the one I’m using and it needs to be on the lowest rung.
I hope you will be inspired to take a look at Mimi’s blog, she is an encyclopedia of invaluable knowledge about macron making and I was definitely successful in following it all. Below I’ve rewritten the recipe but there are too many important tips on her blog to fit onto 1 of my posts so check her out.
French Macaron Recipe (makes 12 macarons)
50g aged egg whites
45g caster sugar
65g icing sugar
65g ground almonds
a pinch of salt
Gel food colouring
Ensure your bowl is oil free as egg whites will not whip up if there is any oil or water in the bowl. Age egg whites for at least 24 hours.
Download or draw templates to place under parchment paper to pipe your macarons all the same size.
Sieve ground almonds into a medium sized bowl, discarding any that do not go through the sieve. Sieve icing sugar, ensuring no hard lumps. Mix together well.
Start to whisk room temperature aged egg whites until foamy. Add pinch of salt.
Continue whisking until trails form. Add caster sugar 1/3 at a time.
Once all incorporated add food colouring. A little goes a long way but keep in mind that it will get paler when combined with the ground almonds & icing sugar.
Whisk until stiff peaks and when meringue clumps in the whisk when you stop. About 6 mins by my handheld beater.
Gently fold in 1/3 almond mixture and then fold in the rest. Be gentle folding but going through the middle every few folds. You need some air in the meringue to create the feet while baking.
Once you reach a lava/honey/ribbon state stop mixing. The mixture should flow off the spatula not drop but should not be runny or when you pipe the macarons you’ll end up with one giant macaron tray! (I have done this, still edible but NOT pretty!)
Gently pour the batter into a piping bag and pipe to the size of your template. Remove the template from under the parchment paper and rap the tray on the table a few times to remove any large air bubbles that will cause your macarons to crack when they bake.
Leave to sit for about 30mins until a skin has formed, they should look matte and you can touch one & nothing sticks to your finger.
Preheat your oven to 160°C and bake for 12-14 mins. While you are new to this watch them carefully and keep an eye on your ovens temperature. Using an oven thermometer inside the oven can help you check that your oven doesn’t increase or decrease temp without you knowing.
Remove from the oven and tap a macaron shell, it should be firm and not wobble. If you can peel it off the parchment paper in one piece, they’re done. If not put them back for another minute.
Allow to cool on the tray before filling with buttercream or whatever filling you prefer. I decorated my macarons with edible food markers and a few sprinkles. My bunnies and carrots were filled with caramel buttercream and they went down a treat. Videos of this are on my Instagram & Facebook.
Store filled macarons in the fridge but return to room temperature before eating.
I hope you give these a try and enjoy the process. Have a super Easter!