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Macarons – The delicate French invention.


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I tried this only once in 2004, to make colored macaroons. It worked, but the macaroons were flatter and seemed more brittle. FWIW, here's what the strawberry looked like:

gallery_23736_355_1100528323.jpg

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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  • 4 weeks later...

I made macarons today. I didn't pipe them out, just used two spoons to drop the batter, because I didn't want the mess. Besides, I wasn't going to fill them anyway.

I'll have pics tomorrow, but I'm quite pleased with the results for my second round, because they do have a bit of feet, they puffed up, and they have smooth tops.

I did sit them out to dry (I think this is critical now) but I plan to up the baking temperature to 160 C the next time. I used nicolekaplan's proportions, but I didn't make an Italian Meringue.

I do have a question though. Does anybody know how much I can reduce the sugar by? I'm willing to up the almond flour, but I'd really like to cut the sugar, because it's already tooooooo sweet without a filling.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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I do have a question though. Does anybody know how much I can reduce the sugar by? I'm willing to up the almond flour, but I'd really like to cut the sugar, because it's already tooooooo sweet without a filling.

Which recipe are you using? Most of the recipes Ive tried have too much sugar, IMHO.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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I do have a question though. Does anybody know how much I can reduce the sugar by? I'm willing to up the almond flour, but I'd really like to cut the sugar, because it's already tooooooo sweet without a filling.

Which recipe are you using? Most of the recipes Ive tried have too much sugar, IMHO.

You probably already read this, but a calculated the sugar ratios for several recipes a couple of pages back:

I also think that most of the macaron recipes I've tried have been too sweet. Lebovitz's recipe, for instance, has 165g of sugar to 125g almonds/whites/cocoa. Herme's recipe, by contrast, has more almonds/whites/cocoa than it does sugar (250g sugar/265g almond+egg whites+cocoa). The recipe posted by Nicole Kaplan is intermediately sweet, with a ratio of 500g sugar/467g almond+egg whites+cocoa (assuming 30g of cocoa).

To put it another way, DL's recipe has a sugar-to-other-stuff ratio of 1.32, PH's has a ratio of 0.94, and NK's recipe has a ratio of 1.07.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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I did read that. I used nicolekaplan's recipe because my brothers were to be my tasters, and they like things on the sweet side.

They loved them.

I'm the one who thinks it's still way too sweet, enough so that I'm reasonably certain that the Herme one will still be the same. But I'll try that next weekend and find out.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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I'm the one who thinks it's still way too sweet, enough so that I'm reasonably certain that the Herme one will still be the same. But I'll try that next weekend and find out.

FWIW, even though PH's recipe only has 13% less sugar than NK's, I've made both recipes and find the difference in sweetness (and texture and appearance) to be readily apparent.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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I'm not supposed to have a 'pocket of air' inside each macaron, right? It wasn't there yesterday, not even after it cooled, but there was one today.

I think this may also be related to the sugar content as well, since I get these with the higher sugar recipes but not the lower sugar recipes. I think what happens is that the outside of the cookie forms a sturdy shell that doesnt shrink when the cookies cools. So when the inside cools and shrinks, it just pulls away from the outer shell, leaving that void. With PH's, I think the shell is not so sturdy, so as the cookie cools, the shell collapses a little bit, and that's why you get a little wrinkling on the top. That's just conjecture on my part, however, and there may be some other explanation.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Pierre Hermé, the originals :

gallery_40488_2237_8799.jpg

from left to right, front to back :

Caramel à la Fleur de Sel

Huile d'Olive et Vanille

Plénitude (Chocolat et Caramel)

Mosaïc (macaron vanille, crème pistache à la cannelle, griottines)

Rose (macaron rose, crème aux pétales de rose)

Chocolat

Edited by filipe (log)

Filipe A S

pastry student, food lover & food blogger

there's allways room for some more weight

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I'm not supposed to have a 'pocket of air' inside each macaron, right? It wasn't there yesterday, not even after it cooled, but there was one today.

I think this may also be related to the sugar content as well, since I get these with the higher sugar recipes but not the lower sugar recipes. I think what happens is that the outside of the cookie forms a sturdy shell that doesnt shrink when the cookies cools. So when the inside cools and shrinks, it just pulls away from the outer shell, leaving that void. With PH's, I think the shell is not so sturdy, so as the cookie cools, the shell collapses a little bit, and that's why you get a little wrinkling on the top. That's just conjecture on my part, however, and there may be some other explanation.

Makes sense to me. Because I can tap the macaroon and there'll be a hollow sound, and the shell doesn't even crack.

But the banging the cookie sheet on the table thing is supposed to deal with it, right? I know I didn't do that, because I figured that since I wasn't piping it, I would not get this problem.

And now I realise why I didn't want to try the PH recipe in the first place. Our Patisserie tried that recipe and made macarons with terribly cracked tops.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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Makes sense to me. Because I can tap the macaroon and there'll be a hollow sound, and the shell doesn't even crack.

But the banging the cookie sheet on the table thing is supposed to deal with it, right? I know I didn't do that, because I figured that since I wasn't piping it, I would not get this problem.

And now I realise why I didn't want to try the PH recipe in the first place. Our Patisserie tried that recipe and made macarons with terribly cracked tops.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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I don't think banging the cookie sheet on the table will make a difference as far as the big voids go, especially if the voids are formed after cooling as I hypothesized above.

I think it might have to do with how much moisture there is in the batter.

If it is too wet, then when you bake it, the outside will get dry, but the inside will not be dry enough. The disparity causes the inside to fall, because it can't cling to a dry, smooth shell.

I was surprised that it worked this time, because it was a rainy day when I made the macarons. I couldn't get the egg whites to stiffen as much as I would have liked.

May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...

Thought I'd share this experiment this thread inspired of me. I like the taste of coconut, but don't like the texture too much of the coconut cookie type macaroons, so I tried making a coconut French macaroon. I toasted some flaked coconut until golden brown, then pulverized it into a powder, using this coconut "flour" instead of almond flour. It turned out pretty well though a bit sweet. I only had sweetened coconut on hand, I'd use unsweetened next time. I'm not very handy with the pastry bag yet, I hope to one day achieve those really pretty looking ones posted in this thread:

macaroons5.jpg

Filled with some coconut ice cream, sorry for blurriness:

macaroons6.jpg

Michelle Pham

I like pie.

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Made Macarons for the first time a couple weeks ago, using PH's recipe (out of his newest book "ph10") for the cookie (but our own ganache). Worked absolutely flawlessly (apart from my lack of piping skills) - crunchy exterior, chewy interior, looked EXACTLY like they do in his books (tasted amazing as well), even after biting into them they looked the same as PH's once you bite into em. Unfortunately I don't have enough time to make some more and post them up here right now :sad:

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Inspired by the rose macarons (above), I did a quick "Google" search to find a rose ganache recipe. I found what I was looking for here

rose ganache

but despite 8 years of French study I am unable to decipher the ingredients. I have some rose water at home that I bought for a Moroccan dessert, but I don't know the difference between sirop de rose (Shah) and d’essence alcoolique de Rose (Sevarôme). One appears to be rose syrup and one rose water, but I'm not familiar with rose syrup. Can someone who knows French better than moi help? I would love to try these.

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Inspired by the rose macarons (above), I did a quick "Google" search to find a rose ganache recipe. I found what I was looking for here

rose ganache

but despite 8 years of French study I am unable to decipher the ingredients. I have some rose water at home that I bought for a Moroccan dessert, but I don't know the difference between sirop de rose (Shah) and d’essence alcoolique de Rose (Sevarôme). One appears to be rose syrup and one rose water, but I'm not familiar with rose syrup. Can someone who knows French better than moi help? I would love to try these.

Sirop de rose is indeed rose sugar syrup - rose-infused simple syrup possibly?. Essence alcoolique de rose translates as alcoholic rose essence - I'm not sure what this might be, maybe it's called something different in English normally?

Cutting the lemon/the knife/leaves a little cathedral:/alcoves unguessed by the eye/that open acidulous glass/to the light; topazes/riding the droplets,/altars,/aromatic facades. - Ode to a Lemon, Pablo Neruda

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I don't have PH10, BUT this post on FOODBEAM describes the macaron recipe in PH10 a little, and the description sounds exactly like the the recipe -- tant por tant, italian meringue, etc -- that Nicole Kaplan posted here. NK says this recipe is actually from Herme. I made a 1/8 batch, and sure enough they came out lookign exactly like Herme's:

250g powder sugar

250g almond flour

30g dutch cocoa

250g sugar

187g egg whites

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Thank you Patrick I just made them with your dose and they came out gourgeus , I never made them before but seems the recepie is great and easy to follow .

Thank you so much :smile:

gallery_44494_2818_10967.jpg

gallery_44494_2818_28871.jpg

Of course far from been even close to perfect , but in total good result.

Vanessa

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Thank you Patrick I just made them with your dose and they came out gourgeus , I never made them before but seems the recepie is great and easy to follow .

Thank you so much  :smile:

gallery_44494_2818_10967.jpg

gallery_44494_2818_28871.jpg

Of course far from been  even close to perfect , but  in total good result.

Good job!

I see you got not only 'feet', but 'hats' as well. I'll give you a tip if you want to try to get rid of them. After you pipe them out, let them dry for a bit, and you can gently press them down with you finger. If they are too sticky and stick to your finger, wait a little longer, or dust them with cocoa powder first.

Edited by Patrick S (log)

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Mmmmm. Okay...so, how does one alter the original recipe to make them "fruity" or whatnot? I read Patrick's post, but he said they got very fragile. Did anyone do any further experiments with them? Yum! *Soooo happpppyyy!*

gallery_23736_355_1316.jpg

I'm kicking myself for not keeping better notes, but I'm pretty sure I made these orange macarons using the base recipe on this page, and adding 1-2t of fine orange zest and some orange coloring. The macarons were very stable.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Thank you Thank you Patrick , these are wonderfull.

I am going to do another batch ( I gave away like 10 boxes ) , and this time make the almonds very very fine ( food processor didnt make a fine almond flour ), and I am going to follow your tips till I get a better results.

Another thing , I didnt let the eggs white out , I actually had some whites in the fridge for quite a while ( they were still good :raz: ),and I use those out of the fridge.I have notice my macaroon came very very puffy , tall , and I can see your are flatter and smoother of course ,other that folling the tip you gave me there is any other thing I should know to avoid them to get so tall?

The inside is very nice and chewy , people that try them ( and ofcourse never tried the original :raz: , were very pleased by the contrast ).

Thank you for sharing this great experience and recepie with us :biggrin:

Edited by Desiderio (log)

Vanessa

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Another thing , I didnt let the eggs white out , I actually had some whites in the fridge for quite a while ( they were still good  :raz: ),and I use those out of the fridge.I have notice my macaroon came very very puffy , tall , and I can see your are flatter and smoother of course ,other that folling the tip you gave me there is any other thing I should know to avoid them to get so tall?

I never let the whites sit out anymore. Just like you, I have a a container of whites the fridge that I'm always adding to and taking from. The only thing I do is heat the whites by placing the bowl into some hot water for a few minutes. If you want a flatter shape, you can try smacking the baking sheet on the counter, or lifting it up and dropping it onto a hard surface -- unless the batter is super-stiff, they will flatten out a bit.

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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