K’s Kitchen – Macarons

I’ve been making a lot of ice cream this year, and I usually make them with a custard base. My usual ice cream base recipe calls for 3 egg yolks.  What to do with the egg whites?  I decided to try my hand at making macarons!  They are very popular in Japan right now and sold at many “hip” stores, but I wanted to see how they would turn out if I made them myself.

 

Macarons are notoriously hard to make.   This is not a recipe I suggest for beginner bakers, nor for people who are pressed on time.  Google was a great resource while I made this, and I often googled things such as “why do my macarons crack/become lopsided/not rise”  to see what people suggested.

 

Tools necessary for making macarons

  • kitchen scale (this is a must, as egg yolks differ in size)
  • piping bag and nozzle
  • parchment
  • standmixer or hand mixer

 

This recipe is from Cookpad, a popular Japanese recipe site. This recipe also includes many tips on what could happen with your macarons and how to fix them.

 

Ingredients:

Egg whites (Weigh the egg whites. The amount of all other ingredients depend on the weight of the egg whites. I used 2 egg whites which were a total of 70g)

Granulated sugar, 85% of egg white weight (in my case, 60g)

Powdered sugar, 115% of egg white weight (in my case, 80g. Use powdered sugar which does not contain added corn starch)

Powdered almonds, 107% of egg white weight (in my case, 75g)

If using cocoa for chocolate macarons, 5g. (reduce powdered almond weight by 5g)

 

Instructions:

1. Freeze the egg whites overnight, and defrost at room temperature. Apparently this makes the meringue more stable. Weigh the egg whites after defrosting, and use that weight to calculate the rest of the ingredients.

2. Sift together powdered sugar, powdered almonds, and cocoa if using

3. Whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form, adding sugar gradually while doing so.

4. Mix together the dry ingredients with the egg whites.

5. Now you need to continue mixing until it becomes the appropriate texture. Scrape batter from around the bowl, turning it over and over, until the mixture falls continuously from your spatula.  This is the most difficult step, because too much mixing will cause your macarons to not be able to rise, and too little will make the tops crack.

6. Pipe your macarons onto a parchment. Then leave the macarons out to dry for at least 1 hour. This is essential to make the “foot” of the macaron.

7. Bake your macarons in a preheated 160 degree Celsius oven for 1 min, then reduce the temperature to 130 degrees and continue to bake for 18 minutes.

IMG_5609_final

 

 Notes:

  • Yes, this is an incredibly labor-intensive recipe!
  • I found that my macarons had lopsided feet.  Apparently this is a sign of uneven drying. Because my apartment has a window only on one side, I found that that side dried faster.  Now I am sure to rotate my macarons half way through the drying process.
  • If you are not familiar with how to use a piping bag and nozzle, be sure to check out some youtube videos before trying.
  • I like to put some sour jam between the macarons, to give the sweet macarons a different flavor profile.

 

Hope you enjoyed this recipe!

xoxo, K

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