Many people are saying that to make Macaroons ( or french spelling Macarons) is very difficult, so difficult, that they would not even dream to try making them.
Well, I thought to myself, it cannot be impossible: in the end of the day it was a person, who made it up first all those years ago, when the cooking thermometres, mixers or food processors were not even on a horizon.
It’s worth a shot.
A few hours researching on the internet and reading carefully each recipe ( you would not believe how many different recipes and methods there are!), finally I decided to try one.
I called it the wet method
You will need a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain round nozzle, electrical wisk or free standing mixer, sieve.
If you don’t have a nozzle for piping bag, don’t worry, just get hold of the piping bag itself .
125g icing sugar
125g ground almonds
40g +50g egg whites
3 tbsp water
110g caster sugar
food colouring (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 170°C and line 2 large baking trays with baking paper.
- Mix well icing sugar and ground almonds together and sieve the mixture 3 times (Important!)
- Put the icing sugar, ground almonds and 40g of egg whites together in a large bowl and mix to a paste.
- Put the water and caster sugar in a small pan and heat gently to melt the sugar, then turn up the heat and boil until the mixture starts to go syrupy and thickens. If you have a thermometer it should read 115°C
- Whisk the remaining 50g of egg whites in a bowl until stiff peaks form Continue to whisk and gently pour in the hot sugar syrup , whisking until the mixture becomes stiff and shiny. For coloured macaroons, add a few drops of food colouring, if using.
- Add a couple of spoons of meringue mixture to the almond paste to loosen it up a bit, then tip the rest of the meringue mixture into the almond paste mixture and stir gently until it becomes stiff and shiny again.
- Spoon the mixture into the piping bag. If you don’t have a right type of nozzle, just cut the tip of the piping bag, so the cut makes around 1 cm across. Smudge a little mixture under each corner of the baking paper to stop it sliding. With the bag held vertically, pipe 3cm flat circles onto the lined trays, about 2cm apart, twisting the bag after each one.
The mixture should be quite loose to give a smooth finish. When finished piping, give the trays 2–3 slams on a flat surface to flatten circles. If the small tips on the top of each circle have not dissapeared, smooth them gently with a tip of a finger.
- Leave the trays to stand for 30 – 45 minutes to form a skin, then bake in the oven for 12–15 minutes with the door slightly ajar ( I put a wooden spoon onto the top of the oven door )
- Remove from the oven, lift the paper off the baking tray and leave the macarons to cool on the paper.
- When cool, sandwich the macarons together with filling of your choice. Put them in the airtight box and keep in the fridge.
They taste better the next day and can be kept in the fridge up to 5 days.