Monday, June 25, 2012

The challenge

A fellow blogger, Nicola, @ Growing Berries, put the "challenge" to me .....

"try making Macarons with the extra egg whites."

Never being one to pass up a good challenge, or good suggestion, I said, "Yes, bring it on."

For those of you who don't read food blogs, making macarons isn't the same as turning out a batch of cookies.  There are hundreds of recipes with each one containing its own set of rules to follow for being successful.  One wrong turn, et voilà, try, try again.

This was my first attempt, would I whip the whites correctly?  Could I fold in the almond flour and powdered sugar without deflating the mixture?  What about all the other "rules",  would I pipe the rounds just so, or let them sit just so long to form a crust?  The list goes on, and on, and on.  Chef Nini even says to put the baking sheet in the fridge (without the macrarons) while the oven is heating, it's suppose to facilitate the rise...give them a thermal shock, no less!

I located a blog, Chef Nini, who detailed her version of the right way to proceed in making a successful macaron, plus she had a video to watch.  It's all in French, so those of you without that language skill, you can read David Lebovitz's directions.

For a first try, I think mine turned out "ok"....well, maybe better than just myself a pat on the back.

I did some things wrong, but I did succeed in getting the "pieds" on some of the rounds.  They were all crusty on the tops and soft inside, too.  Several of them cracked as they cooled...that's a bad thing!
Perhaps my oven was a bit too hot, I'll have to read up on how to correct that for my next batch.

One of the reasons I chose Chef Nini's recipe was that it made just 8 macarons....not too much to discard if I failed completely.

I didn't have to throw any away,  yay!  I made chocolate macarons (David says these are the most difficult to make, but I always have chocolate in the pantry), and filled them with a wonderful chocolate caramel ganache.  Basically, I heated some cream, poured it over the chocolate pieces, then stirred in a little of my homemade caramel already available in my fridge. 

I ate one today...after eating a healthy breakfast, of was very good.  In fact, I just ate a second one now, as writing about them got my defenses down!  It, too, was good ---lots of calories--- but nonetheless, good.  I suppose I'll have to skip the bowl of ice cream I was thinking about, on this, another one of our beautiful, hot, summer days.

These are aprox. 4 cm. in diameter., before going in the oven....I waited 40 minutes for them to dry on top.

Two of my favorite friends, now frolicking in doggy heaven, but not forgotten... Casey and Marzipan.

This is a good example of the "pieds".  

What do you think?   Not bad for a first attempt?

No matter how they appear,  they sure taste rich and decadent.

Now, I'll have to try some other flavors....hmmm, pistachio sounds good.

Thanks for dropping by!



  1. Yeah! you did it :) They turned out brilliantly and they look delicious. One of my friends in France showed me how to make them last year and made it seem so easy. You just need patience I think. Looking forward to seeing how your pistachio ones turn out - they're my favourite.

    1. Thanks, Nicola, for your kind words. I'll just hope that the pistachio macarons turn out well. On verra!