I don’t know if any of you have tried to make these finicky cookies, but man they are good. I’ve tried a few recipes and this seems to be the easiest. Oh, and if you happen to curse while you make these, it doesn’t count. Cursing is excused while making these, it’s part of the language of the French Macarons.
I’ve included tips that I have learned along the way as well as some that were included with the recipe.
3 Egg Whites*
1/4 cup White Sugar
2 cups Confectioners Sugar (powdered sugar)
1 cup Almond Flour**
Pinch of Salt
1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
*Eggs need to be at room temperature before beginning this recipe.
**Almond flour is better to use than almond meal, although you can still use almond meal if that is all you have or can find.
Let your eggs come to room temperature. This could take a few hours, I like to take the eggs out of the fridge the night before, if I am making them in the morning. If you don’t have time for that, you can submerse them in warm water for 10-15 minutes. Make sure the water isn’t too hot to avoid cooking them. I also take more out than I need because I don’t know what is in the egg and if I goof up on the recipe, I have the eggs ready to go for the next batch.
Place three egg whites in the mixer and whip until fluffy or foamy. Then add granulated sugar, salt, and cream of tartar. Whip in the mixer until very stiff peaks form. This could take 8 – 10 minutes.
While the mixer is whipping the eggs, sugar, salt and cream of tartar, place the almond flour and the confectioners sugar in a sieve and sift it together. You may be left with larger bits of the almond flour. You can eat those or throw those away.
When the egg whites have reached their stiff form it should look something like this.
Then add the food coloring. The coloring will fade slightly while it is baking so add a little more, if you’d like. With this recipe, I added red food coloring and got a pinkish peach color. Mix the color in, it doesn’t have to be completely blended as you will do that with the next step.
When the color is blended in, add the almond flour/powdered sugar mixture. Take out your spatula and fold the almond mixture into the egg white mixture with the spatula. You have been super careful with this step. If you don’t blend it enough your macarons will be lumpy and cracked, or if you blend it too much then your macarons will be flat and not form their “feet”. Beth (the creator of this recipe) says 65-75 turns of your spatula should be about the right amount of time. You want it to look like lava coming out of the volcano. Do NOT use your mixer for this step.
Once you have reached the right consistency, spoon the mixture into a piping bag and pipe out smaller circles, 1-2 inches, onto a cookie sheet that has been covered with either a silpat or parchment paper. It is best not to use Pam Spray or anything like that as it will change the consistency of the mixture and ruin the macarons.
Once the circles have been piped out, bang the cookie sheet against the table, 3-5 times to get air bubbles out of the macarons. This will help prevent cracking on the top of the cookie.
At this point, we let the macarons sit on the table and set for at least 20 minutes – up to about an hour. This will allow them some time to dry out. You want them to be slightly tacky but not sticky. When they dry out it prevents them from spreading while in the hot oven and this helps to create the feet on the cookie. While they are setting, get the oven preheated to 300 degrees F.
Bake the cookies for no less than 20 minutes. If you under bake them, they will stick to the parchment paper. I like to bake them for about 21-22 minutes – yes, you need to be that picky about the timing. After a few tries, you should be used to your oven and how it bakes the macarons and you’ll know for sure the best timing for them. It is also best to bake them one tray at a time. Yes, they like to have the whole oven to themselves.
After they have baked, take the macarons out of the oven and allow them to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes. They should peel nicely and quickly off the cookie sheet. If, however, they do stick to the pan a little, you can use a spatula to take them off or leave them for a little longer on the cookie sheet. Place them on a cooling rack to completely cool.
When they have completely cooled, turn half of them over. Pipe a small amount of buttercream frosting on them and top with another cookie.
Recipe for frosting is below this picture.
RASPBERRY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
1 1/2 cup Salted Butter
3 cups Powdered Sugar
2 cups of Raspberries, worked through a sieve to extract about 6 tablespoons of juice.
Mix altogether in a mixer. Place in a piping bag.