Beginners Guide to French Macarons

French Macarons. Oh. My. God. They look and taste divine. Take me to France this minute and let me eat all of them and the Eiffel Tower as well. Once you discover how easy French Macarons are to make you can share them with friends, family or munch on them till your hearts content. The key to success is following the recipe and method with exact measurements and have a little patience!

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Macarons should be slightly crunchy on the outside with a slight chew in the middle. You can be as imaginative as you wish with the flavours and colours. For the ones featured I opted for a strawberry flavour buttercream.

I would highly recommend a Silicone macaron tray as it takes the guess-work out of amount of mixture required and cooks the Macarons evenly and ensures removing them a doodle!

Ingredients 

  • 100 grams of icing sugar
  • 100 grams ground almonds
  • 60 grams caster sugar
  • 2 medium sized eggs (whites only)
  • For the Buttercream
  • 150 grams unsalted butter
  • 75 grams icing sugar

Method 

Sieve the icing sugar and ground almonds into a food processor, throw away any lumps left behind. Leave to mix for at least 5 minutes. If you don’t have a food processor fear not as you can mix these two ingredients with a spoon for 5 minutes.

Crack the eggs whites into a clean dry bowl.

Start whisking the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Start adding a little caster sugar at a time and continue to whisk until you have glossy white peaks. If you wish to add a food colouring do so now! I tend to think gels work best as they don’t change the consistency of the mixture.

Slowly add your icing sugar and almond mixture to the egg whites fold on slowly and steadily.

Hold the spoon up from the bowl. You want the mixture to flow down the spoon like a ribbon. If it’s to thick keep mixing.

Pipe your mixture into the macaron silicone mould or make small blobs onto parchment paper.

Gently tap the baking tray or silicone mould to release any bubbles.

Set a timer and leave the macarons to set at room temperature for 20 minutes after this time you should be able to see a shiny film on top.

Time to pre-heat the oven to 140c /300f.

Bake the macarons in the middle shelf for 5 minutes then open up the oven door to release excess heat and bake for another 10 minutes.

You can tell the macarons are cooked when they don’t wobble on their feet are film but slightly risen.

Leave them to cool completely before removing them from the mat or parchment this is the mistake I made on my first attempt so eager to get them off that the broke. So don’t make my mistake be patient!

To make the buttercream mix the butter and icing sugar until completely mixed. If the buttercream is to hard, add a little dash of milk. You can add any flavour to your buttercream. For a chocolate buttercream alternative you can use Nuttella which works a treat.

Pipe buttercream on a macaroon and then gently sandwich together. Grab a cuppa and enjoy.

Top Tips

You can freeze macarons for a month without butercream in (as if you are going to keep them that long!). The Macarons will keep well in the fridge for 3-4 days. If like me you like them at room temperature get them put a little before you want to eat the living hell out of them!

Enjoy and happy baking.

Faye

xoxo

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