Jump to content


Welcome to the eG Forums!

These forums are a service of the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancement of the culinary arts. Anyone can read the forums, however if you would like to participate in active discussions please join the Society.

Photo

Macarons: Troubleshooting & Tips

Confections

  • Please log in to reply
231 replies to this topic

#181 pquinene

pquinene
  • society donor
  • 96 posts

Posted 26 November 2013 - 04:59 AM

Hello every body!!

 

Please have a look at the attached photo to see the difference between my macaron and the one from a cafe. Mine was hollow and unpleasantly crunchy, unlike the one on the right which was very creamy.

Can someone please explain to me how to get the layer "right right under the thin shell" to be creamy like the one in the photo?

This is the recipe I used:

  • 90 grams (3 ounces) of egg whites (equal to whites of 3 large eggs), at room temperature
  • 125 grams (4 ½ ounces) of ground almonds or almond flour
  • 125 grams (4 ½ ounces) of icing sugar
  • 25 grams (1 ounce) unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)
  • 125 grams (4 ½ ounces) of caster sugar (superfine sugar) divided into two equal portions

 

Thanks in advance for any help

 

detkxu.jpg

 

2j466nr.jpg

 

Did you "age/mature" your macs in the fridge? I find that once you fill the macs, they have to go in the fridge to become soft and creamy. In general, ganache-filled macs take a day or two to mature compared to macs filled with a cream cheese mixture or just plain jam. I love how the macs go from soft and chewy to soft and creamy the longer they are in the fridge. Depending on the filling, if they age too long, they become too soft. Hope this helps.



#182 pastrygirl

pastrygirl
  • society donor
  • 1,136 posts
  • Location:Seattle, WA USA

Posted 12 December 2013 - 09:32 AM

Quick question on storage - troubleshooting too many macarons!

I had a catering yesterday that ordered 400 macarons, so I started production four days ago. They barely touched them. If I wanted to serve them a week from tomorrow, should I freeze them, or will they be fine in the walk-in? I'll make fresh ones next week if I have to, but it would be nice to not have all that piping and sandwiching go to waste! They are filled with Italian meringue buttercream.

What would you do?

#183 judiu

judiu
  • participating member
  • 2,245 posts
  • Location:South Florida

Posted 12 December 2013 - 01:49 PM

375 ( %) ) untouched macarons? Send 'em to me!
"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

#184 pastrygirl

pastrygirl
  • society donor
  • 1,136 posts
  • Location:Seattle, WA USA

Posted 12 December 2013 - 04:55 PM

375 ( %) ) untouched macarons? Send 'em to me!


After I set aside enough for the next three parties this weekend, I still had about 70 extra, so I put them in the freezer and will see if they survive well enough to be sold next week. I'm sure I've seen frozen macarons in grocery stores. I'll try to remember to report back on how well they thaw out.

#185 JeanneCake

JeanneCake
  • participating member
  • 1,334 posts
  • Location:greater boston area

Posted 12 December 2013 - 05:23 PM

Depending on the conditions in your walk in (humid or not) the shells might change color (this happened to me in the summer when I moved and got a new walk that needed to be tweaked a bit); I would put them in fish buckets lined with parchment or deli paper and go from there.  Herme ages his macs in the cooler for a day; and I've stored completed ones in the freezer (in fish tubs but I wrap them with plastic wrap) for a week so I think you'll be fine!



#186 DianaM

DianaM
  • participating member
  • 272 posts
  • Location:Ontario, Canada

Posted 21 December 2013 - 09:27 PM

After I set aside enough for the next three parties this weekend, I still had about 70 extra, so I put them in the freezer and will see if they survive well enough to be sold next week. I'm sure I've seen frozen macarons in grocery stores. I'll try to remember to report back on how well they thaw out.


Pastrygirl, I am very interested in the results of your experiment. I am planning to make macs as favours for my son's baptism, and being able to make and freeze them ahead of time would save me from this last-minute baking frenzy. Especially since they are so temperamental.

Also, if anyone has experience freezing the shells only, and cares to share what they know, I would greatly appreciate it.

#187 JeanneCake

JeanneCake
  • participating member
  • 1,334 posts
  • Location:greater boston area

Posted 22 December 2013 - 05:47 AM

I freeze the unfilled shells all the time; I put them flat sides together in a fish tub (think tupperware or rubbermaid airtight container) and line them up and then freeze them.  I fill them immediately after taking them from the freezer and then store the filled ones in the cooler (same way, in the fish tub, airtight) for a day.  I tell the customer the shelf life is 3 days max. 



#188 DianaM

DianaM
  • participating member
  • 272 posts
  • Location:Ontario, Canada

Posted 22 December 2013 - 11:47 AM

I freeze the unfilled shells all the time; I put them flat sides together in a fish tub (think tupperware or rubbermaid airtight container) and line them up and then freeze them.  I fill them immediately after taking them from the freezer and then store the filled ones in the cooler (same way, in the fish tub, airtight) for a day.  I tell the customer the shelf life is 3 days max.


Sounds great! Do you think 2 weeks is a reasonable time to keep them frozen?

#189 pastrygirl

pastrygirl
  • society donor
  • 1,136 posts
  • Location:Seattle, WA USA

Posted 22 December 2013 - 02:57 PM

After I set aside enough for the next three parties this weekend, I still had about 70 extra, so I put them in the freezer and will see if they survive well enough to be sold next week. I'm sure I've seen frozen macarons in grocery stores. I'll try to remember to report back on how well they thaw out.


Pastrygirl, I am very interested in the results of your experiment. I am planning to make macs as favours for my son's baptism, and being able to make and freeze them ahead of time would save me from this last-minute baking frenzy. Especially since they are so temperamental.

Also, if anyone has experience freezing the shells only, and cares to share what they know, I would greatly appreciate it.


Diana, Jeanne is right, they freeze fine. The ones I froze had already been in the fridge for a few days and were a bit soft, but I don't think they were changed or harmed at all after a week in the freezer. I still have one more tray frozen. I'm sure 2 weeks would be fine.

#190 Alleguede

Alleguede
  • participating member
  • 116 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 04:53 PM

If the Macarons are well wrapped up, you can keep them for a little while frozen. Pierre herme and la duree ship them abroad over the world.

#191 pjm333

pjm333
  • participating member
  • 103 posts

Posted 29 December 2013 - 08:21 AM

Been using this recipe for years with great success, I use frozen egg whites/thawed right out of the fridge.

 

Macaroons           300 Degrees Convection Oven

 

2 # 10X

1 # Blanched Almond Flour

2 Cups egg whites

1 Cup Superfine Sugar

Coloring either dry or wet

                         Sift 10X & Almond Flour, Beat whites till stiff and add sugar & beat till sugar is dissolved & add color. Fold in 10X mixture in 3 stages, pipe out onto silpat & I let sit about 10 minutes and bake for 13 to 15 minutes. 

Attached Images

  • Chocolate Macaroons !.jpg
  • mac 2.jpg

  • judiu likes this

#192 pquinene

pquinene
  • society donor
  • 96 posts

Posted 08 January 2014 - 07:05 AM

 

375 ( %) ) untouched macarons? Send 'em to me!


After I set aside enough for the next three parties this weekend, I still had about 70 extra, so I put them in the freezer and will see if they survive well enough to be sold next week. I'm sure I've seen frozen macarons in grocery stores. I'll try to remember to report back on how well they thaw out.

 

I have frozen both filled and unfilled macs for as long as 5 to 6 weeks. How fast they soften depends on the filling. I use primarily cream cheese and butter flavored with jam, just jam or a soft chocolate ganache.  I don't use buttercream because it is too sweet and can take several days to soften the shells. I have found that filled and frozen macs thawed out in the fridge mature more quickly than macs that are filled then placed immediately in the fridge. I freeze mine in freezer storage bags and plastic food storage containers. I would freeze at least 6 to 12 pieces of every batch you make and takes notes of filled, unfilled, the type of filling, how long your freeze them......then you have a more confident idea of how long they keep well for future event planning.



#193 bripastryguy

bripastryguy
  • participating member
  • 688 posts
  • Location:Long Island, NY

Posted 05 February 2014 - 02:56 PM

i've been making macarons for the past few months and have no issues. We make the shells (common meringue, not Italian), no issue. Bake great, feet and all. We store the shells in the walkin freezer overnite. Next day, take them out and fill. Then they get stored in a chest freezer in airtight box until needed. my store staff loads the trays the night before. Then for the past two weeks weve come in and they are actually wet, almost soggy. I have not changed my recipe or any of the ingredients. They are being stored in a Leader bakery case on the top shelf. There is nothing that can be leaking on them. I have even put perforated containers of desicant and still not helping. I have had the refrigeration unit checked and its working perfect. Please help, these are a big seller for me. i would hate to stop making them cause of this, but I cant afford to keep throwing them away. Plese send replies to: bripastryguy@gmail.com

 

Thank you


"Chocolate has no calories....
Chocolate is food for the soul, The soul has no weight, therefore no calories" so said a customer, a lovely southern woman, after consuming chocolate indulgence
SWEET KARMA DESSERTS
www.sweetkarmadesserts.com
550 East Meadow Ave. East meadow, NY 11554
516-794-4478
Brian Fishman

#194 Kerry Beal

Kerry Beal
  • participating member
  • 9,868 posts
  • Location:Ontario, Canada

Posted 05 February 2014 - 04:09 PM

Brian - any change in the way you are removing them from the freezer?  Thereby encouraging condensation on the surface.



#195 Alleguede

Alleguede
  • participating member
  • 116 posts

Posted 05 February 2014 - 07:31 PM

Hi, what filling do you put in them? That could be the origin of the issue. Because even if you under baked your shells they shouldn't get soggy. I suspect your filling to absorb a lot of humidity and release as well.

#196 Drafty82

Drafty82
  • participating member
  • 4 posts

Posted 14 April 2014 - 09:42 PM

I have been baking Macarons at home pretty successfully for 6 months or so, and have recently upgraded to larger aluminium baking sheets & silpat (from traditional Steel trays & baking paper) after a class with Adriano Zumbo (I am in Australia). My 1st batch turned out perfect (chocolate shells - replaced 10% of almonds & icing sugar with cocoa powder as per his recipe)., however 90% of the next 2 standard batches turned out as pictured below. Does anyone have any ideas? I just tried another batch this morning, the 1st two trays came out perfect, and the 3rd did this again.

 

I have made the following changes since my class;

 

- 2mm thick aluminium sheet with Silpat

- grinding my own blanched almonds (in lieu of Almond Meal)

 

With the 2 completely failed trays, I developed a theory, that I had rapped the trays a little over zealously, I did take care this morning with just some gentle tapping, maybe by the third tray I wasn’t so gentle...

 

Has anyone had a similar experience? Or any ideas, I just find my theory lacking substance

 

DSC_0362_zpsc7488a49.jpg



#197 Volition

Volition
  • participating member
  • 42 posts

Posted 15 April 2014 - 05:47 AM

Is the bottom still on the Silpat? If so, I found this happens because of either or both of two things. Not baked long enough and/or and what I suspect to be the main problem. Not left to cool long enough before taking off the tray. This should help.

#198 Drafty82

Drafty82
  • participating member
  • 4 posts

Posted 15 April 2014 - 02:08 PM

No, I know what you are saying, but the base isn't left on the Silpat. There is a fine powdery residue where the base used to be, like the base was massively over cooked to the point it disintegrated.

 

I think I might do a pure test batch next time, and reduce the oven temp further, as the outer shell is pretty crisp.



#199 pquinene

pquinene
  • society donor
  • 96 posts

Posted 15 April 2014 - 02:57 PM

I have been baking Macarons at home pretty successfully for 6 months or so, and have recently upgraded to larger aluminium baking sheets & silpat (from traditional Steel trays & baking paper) after a class with Adriano Zumbo (I am in Australia). My 1st batch turned out perfect (chocolate shells - replaced 10% of almonds & icing sugar with cocoa powder as per his recipe)., however 90% of the next 2 standard batches turned out as pictured below. Does anyone have any ideas? I just tried another batch this morning, the 1st two trays came out perfect, and the 3rd did this again.

 

I have made the following changes since my class;

 

- 2mm thick aluminium sheet with Silpat

- grinding my own blanched almonds (in lieu of Almond Meal)

 

With the 2 completely failed trays, I developed a theory, that I had rapped the trays a little over zealously, I did take care this morning with just some gentle tapping, maybe by the third tray I wasn’t so gentle...

 

Has anyone had a similar experience? Or any ideas, I just find my theory lacking substance

 

DSC_0362_zpsc7488a49.jpg

If all else is the same, then the new pans you used transferred heat either too quickly or too slow.  If you went from parchment paper to silpat, the silpat is thicker and the heat gets to your macs slower -- try using your new pans with parchment paper.  If heat is getting to your macs too fast, nest two exact pans together -- pipe your batter on one pan then put that pan into a second pan...then put both in your oven.

 

Since your first two trays on your last attempt came out perfect and the third did not, then your batter could be sitting out too long.....could you bake them all at once or fit as much batter onto one pan as possible? Somewhere in this thread, another member changed the brand of parchment used....and the macs come out radically misshapen.

 

The only time something like this happened -- with a handful of macs -- was during one of my experiments. I used the freshest eggs I could get at the store and separated the whites the same day I used them. I've learned that if you use an electric oven without a fan/convection feature, then old egg whites that have sat on the counter a couple of days work best.

 

Chocolate shells using cocoa powder tend to be more stable than plain shells because cocoa powder has starch, hence they tend to be less hollow. The only way I make macarons now is with aged egg whites AND tapioca starch -- via French/basic meringue! I never get hollows and they all come out perfect. I use  5 oz. fine almond flour, 8 oz. powdered sugar, 4 oz. aged whites, 1.5 oz. caster sugar, 0.5 oz. tapioca starch, and 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar.. I whip the meringue on about medium-low for 6 minutes, medium for 9 minutes...then if needed, high for 30 to 60 seconds.

 

mint_chocolate_macarons.jpg

 

coconut_strawberry_n_cream_french_macaro

 

 

Hope this helps!


Edited by pquinene, 15 April 2014 - 03:16 PM.

  • DianaM likes this

#200 Drafty82

Drafty82
  • participating member
  • 4 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 03:18 PM

If all else is the same, then the new pans you used transferred heat either too quickly or too slow.

 

Hope this helps!

 

I have done some experimenting, and I am now confident the problem is the Heat is too slow to the Base of the Shells. It is just going to take some more trial and error to find that butter zone between not enough and too much.

 

It is incredibly frustrating, because the one in the picture I posted above is so aesthetically pleasing until I remove it from the Silpat, and the ones I have since managed to cook thoroughly, have all the typical too much heat symptoms (protruding uneven feet & hollows).

 

I did try pre-heating a tray, and sliding the silpat across, but had 54 volcanoes in a matter of minutes. This is something I might continue to experiment with, but with a reduced pre-heat time (maybe 2 minutes instead of 10).



#201 Drafty82

Drafty82
  • participating member
  • 4 posts

Posted 22 April 2014 - 03:03 PM

Ok, I have worked out the problem, to get enough heat into the tray, it is warping/buckling. I guess the 1st awesome batch was because the sheets were new and never used.

 

Time to find some proper 2/3 sized sheets (and knock an inch off both of the short sides of my silpats).

 

I did a batch last night on my old trays with baking paper and they came out awesome (should have listened to my wife a few batches ago - probably wouldn't have come to this realisation though).



#202 Axelth

Axelth
  • new member
  • 1 posts

Posted 24 April 2014 - 08:00 AM

Two questions about macarons.

 

1. what is the best way to store macarons?

 

2. How can i imprint logo or a text on a macaron?

 



#203 Lisa Shock

Lisa Shock
  • society donor
  • 2,198 posts
  • Location:Phoenix, AZ

Posted 24 April 2014 - 12:58 PM

1) plain, unfilled, in a dry container with desiccant packets then fill to order

 

2)  Chocolate and a stencil, however, it will be very delicate handwork as they break very easily....

 

You could print using one of the sugar icing printers and attach a printed sheet with a dot of chocolate.



#204 Matthew Kirshner

Matthew Kirshner
  • participating member
  • 84 posts

Posted 27 May 2014 - 02:45 PM

So recently I have been dealing with an issue with my macarons.  The formula I have been using years has not be producing the shells I like.  Nothing has dramatically change with ingredients except when I was at my last employment and they were an organic bakery, so the sugar was very corase.  with that I changed the meringue to a swiss.  the place I am at now I am back to regular sugar but the resting time is taking longer than usualy to dry out, when it does and comes out of the oven it does not create feet it stays how it was piped.  I know with the weather changing is it possible I should add more egg white powder to the meringue? I am use to classic French meringue. 

 

Any thoughts?



#205 Volition

Volition
  • participating member
  • 42 posts

Posted 27 May 2014 - 08:37 PM

I suspect your batter is drier then previously used. Do you use digital scales to measure out your ingredients. If yes, are they accurate? How did you measure ingredients previously? The answer to these questions will help. If you were using egg whites and measuring by no of eggs. The egg supplier might have changed and maybe not enough white in the mix as previously. Any thoughts?

#206 Volition

Volition
  • participating member
  • 42 posts

Posted 27 May 2014 - 08:40 PM

Two questions about macarons.

1. what is the best way to store macarons?

2. How can i imprint logo or a text on a macaron?


Some bakeries do a different coloured dot or dots in their shells to identify that it is their macarons. You need to make a second colour shell batter and pipe a small dot into the main macaron she'll. if the goal is to have an identifiable macaron as from your bakery. In Melbourne their is a guy who has a red dot on all of his macarons.

#207 Matthew Kirshner

Matthew Kirshner
  • participating member
  • 84 posts

Posted 28 May 2014 - 01:24 PM

I suspect your batter is drier then previously used. Do you use digital scales to measure out your ingredients. If yes, are they accurate? How did you measure ingredients previously? The answer to these questions will help. If you were using egg whites and measuring by no of eggs. The egg supplier might have changed and maybe not enough white in the mix as previously. Any thoughts?

 

I use my digital scale.  it is very accurate, I keep it calibrated normally.  the egg supplier does change job to job, but I rely on the measurement on the scale.  Today the shells came out great, because it was less humid in the kitchen, I am just wondering if I should use more egg white powder in the meringue for those humid days, or would that be an overkill 



#208 pquinene

pquinene
  • society donor
  • 96 posts

Posted 29 May 2014 - 04:38 AM

So recently I have been dealing with an issue with my macarons.  The formula I have been using years has not be producing the shells I like.  Nothing has dramatically change with ingredients except when I was at my last employment and they were an organic bakery, so the sugar was very corase.  with that I changed the meringue to a swiss.  the place I am at now I am back to regular sugar but the resting time is taking longer than usualy to dry out, when it does and comes out of the oven it does not create feet it stays how it was piped.  I know with the weather changing is it possible I should add more egg white powder to the meringue? I am use to classic French meringue. 

 

Any thoughts?

Try adding tapioca starch. I know, it's a bit different......but I also dry my whites and rest the piped macarons before putting in an electric oven (not a professional/convection oven).

 

Here is my basic recipe so you can see the ratio of whites to powdered sugar to almond flour to tapioca starch to caster sugar. I've used egg white powder before without much success. Using enough tapioca starch, drying the whites, and mixing properly, I've never had a failed batch. I do a lot of extra steps because I don't have a convection oven.

 

Set 1

6.0 to 6.3 ounces egg whites*

You will ultimately use only 4 ounces of three-day old whites (4 oz. = 113.40 g / 6.0 oz. = 170.10 g / 6.3 oz = 178.60 g).

*If aging the eggs for five days, you’ll need 6.8 ounces, or 192.78 grams, of whites to start with.

Set 2

5 ounces almond flour/meal (141.75 grams)

8 ounces powdered sugar (226.80 grams)

Set 3

1.5 ounces caster sugar (42.52 grams)

0.5 ounces tapioca starch (14.18 grams)

¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

Hope this helps!



#209 Matthew Kirshner

Matthew Kirshner
  • participating member
  • 84 posts

Posted 29 May 2014 - 10:47 AM

Try adding tapioca starch. I know, it's a bit different......but I also dry my whites and rest the piped macarons before putting in an electric oven (not a professional/convection oven).

 

Here is my basic recipe so you can see the ratio of whites to powdered sugar to almond flour to tapioca starch to caster sugar. I've used egg white powder before without much success. Using enough tapioca starch, drying the whites, and mixing properly, I've never had a failed batch. I do a lot of extra steps because I don't have a convection oven.

 

Set 1

6.0 to 6.3 ounces egg whites*

You will ultimately use only 4 ounces of three-day old whites (4 oz. = 113.40 g / 6.0 oz. = 170.10 g / 6.3 oz = 178.60 g).

*If aging the eggs for five days, you’ll need 6.8 ounces, or 192.78 grams, of whites to start with.

Set 2

5 ounces almond flour/meal (141.75 grams)

8 ounces powdered sugar (226.80 grams)

Set 3

1.5 ounces caster sugar (42.52 grams)

0.5 ounces tapioca starch (14.18 grams)

¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

Hope this helps!

 

Thank you for the formula, I am working out of a professional kitchen when I do make them.  I try not to make them at home because I always had a fear they will not rise without a convection fan.  If I were to make them at home I will definitely try your formula, would a baking stone help with the baking process? 

 

Thanks!!



#210 pquinene

pquinene
  • society donor
  • 96 posts

Posted 29 May 2014 - 01:51 PM

Thank you for the formula, I am working out of a professional kitchen when I do make them.  I try not to make them at home because I always had a fear they will not rise without a convection fan.  If I were to make them at home I will definitely try your formula, would a baking stone help with the baking process? 

 

Thanks!!

Yes, I double the baking pans (nest an empty pan under the pan of piped macs) and put them on a baking stone. Above, I actually just meant to say try adding tapioca starch to your egg whites....so I used slightly more than 0.1 oz of tapioca starch per 1.0 oz of aged egg whites.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Confections