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Your Daily Sweets (2005-2012)


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The feet are smaller than I would like, but overall they turned out great and are quite evocative of tiramisu - the point of the whole endeavor.

tiramisu macarons.JPG

Sounds delicious! Do you know how to avoid the small feet issue next time? I just learned but don't want to explain if you already know.

Oh please do tell! They seem to develop nice feet while they are baking, but somewhere between minutes 9 and 12 they fall on themselves and flatten like that. They have great texture and no airspace at their crowns, so a resolution to the feet issue would be wonderful.

They've likely dried for too long. I took a macaron course recently and the most useful tip I picked up was drying time. Chef Marco uses a swiss meringue which I liked. He suggested keeping a log of each time you bake macaron because there are so many factors that affect them. Humidity and temp outside, temp inside, are there fans on, are they by an open door, where in the kitchen are you drying them, and for how long. If you touch the tops gently as the drying time progresses you will see it change and form a skin. The trick is getting them in the oven at the right time. Practice makes perfect as usual. My goal is to be able to tell when the skin is right so that I can bake them successfully in any kitchen. Don't know if that's possible but I'm going to try. If you err on the side of over dried at least you still get feet it's just they're shorter. If it's under dried or the batter is too runny then they're more likely to crack. Hope this helps a bit in your quest for the perfect macaron :).

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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Canadian Bakin - thank you! I dried the first pan about 15 or 20 minutes, and the others for incrementally longer as the pans ahead of them in line took their turn in the oven. Perhaps I will try shortening the resting time the next time I find a reason to make them. They are great obsession fodder for someone like me, so that may be sooner than later.

Shelby (loving the blog, by the way!) - try them! Two tips from a rank amateur who has had some success with them: use the italian meringue method, and make sure they know who's boss.

Patty

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Canadian Bakin - thank you! I dried the first pan about 15 or 20 minutes, and the others for incrementally longer as the pans ahead of them in line took their turn in the oven. Perhaps I will try shortening the resting time the next time I find a reason to make them. They are great obsession fodder for someone like me, so that may be sooner than later.

Shelby (loving the blog, by the way!) - try them! Two tips from a rank amateur who has had some success with them: use the italian meringue method, and make sure they know who's boss.

I have the almonds.....I'm tempted. I've never even eaten a macaron before. Sad, eh? I almost ordered some over the holidays, as they don't sell them around here, but I didn't.

OH thank you!! Glad you are reading!!!

Edited by Shelby (log)
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dystopiandreamgir, absolutely outstanding as always. I know whenever you post something its going to create alot of wows here. I have that tool for creating woodgrain. Did you create the woodgrain on a sheet of chocolate and then cover the log with that woodgrain chocolate?

yes it was spread on a sheet of acetate; and because I was wary of wrapping it (I'm a bit of a klutz, and if the sheet hits the cake wrong and is then dragged into place, the design is ruined) I elevated the buche on a narrow pan with all four sides free, lowered the acetate onto the top, then pulled down the sides tightly. I put the whole contraption into the fridge to set. I had made a larger design than necessary (in the hope that if I messed some of it up, there would still be enough to use) so had several inches excess on all four sides, which I trimmed off with a warm knife.

thanks everyone for the nice comments...

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I got a King Arthur flour gift card for xmas, and I've been waiting all week to try out my silicone molds...here's molten chocolate cake with chocolate ice cream, salted caramel sauce and roasted pecans. Pretty yummy, although I think I baked the cakes about a minute too long, since they were more fudgy than molten.

molten chocolate cake.jpg

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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finally got something that looks like a mac :) i have been jinxed with bad macs...i have tried 8 times..yes, horrible to admit...but me+ macs= suicidal depression.....

i used the italian method, i fail horribly with the french method....my sheet pans are very very warped, so don't look to close at the feet....but when i get three more batches to turn out normal, i will invest in pans just for the macs...till then, lopsided macs for me!

reg macs with pink color, lemon italian buttercream and raz jam...

Screen shot 2011-01-07 at 4.32.44 PM.png

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This recipe has my name on it when I get home from Washington and am snowed in on Tuesday. I have the last bits of my hoarded Gold Rush apples waiting to be used up. Similar texture to Grannies, but more interesting flavor. I like what looks to be a denser, less airy pudding-cake.

David, thanks for posting it. And the pic was sooo inviting.

"Half of cooking is thinking about cooking." ---Michael Roberts

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this year's buches...

oak leaves, with toasted hazelnut/frangelico buttercream filling:

DSC01911.JPG

three botanicals, coffee, chocolate, vanilla:

DSC02024.JPG

(disclaimers:

coffee does not blossom and fruit at the same time, except on my cake;

actual vanilla orchids are more slender;

the chocolate cacao leaves were not cast from real cacao as i can't get my hands on them in the pacific northwest;

the cacao pods are from xocoa)

rum and caramelized chestnuts

DSC02170.JPG

and my first time playing with a woodgrain tool (chocolate fondant cones, matcha marzipan needles):

DSC02120.JPG

happy new year everyone! thanks for all the inspiration and information shared here!

Those are spectacular. I usually find the Buche de Noel a bit kitsch-y looking at best. Yours are elegant, inventive, playful. On the first, did you make the "base" for the roll from cake or wood? Since it's sitting directly on cloth, I guess the wood's wood. Either way a wonderful choice, the more cake would be the icing.... I was first attracted by how the subtlety of the bark as opposed to what one generally sees, but you outdid yourself with the leaves and acorns. What's the overall size? and the size of the little log?

But for sheer beauty, it has to be the rum and caramelized chestnut cake. Is there chestnut in the filling? or perhaps even some chestnut flour in the cake itself?

"Half of cooking is thinking about cooking." ---Michael Roberts

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Ok, I attempted macarons...sigh.

Just know that I'm not a good sweets maker...AND, I've never seen a macaron in person, much less tasted one, but the descriptions of them positively make me drool, so I had to try to make my own. I could order them online, but the price is astronomical!

I found the macaron topic here and asked a question, but it's under "France", so I don't think anyone saw it.

I decided to grind my own almonds and wondered if I should dry them a bit after they were ground....I went ahead and did so in my counter convection oven.

Anyway, the first batch....had feet but were terribly lopsided.

Second batch....don't want to talk about it.

Third batch...some feet...not perfect, but....not so bad. Still, some lopsided.. Since I've never seen them in person, I'm just not sure. They don't seem "thick" enough..not enough "foot". Does that make sense?

Tasted great.

I did some with store bought fig jam inside, and some with my mother-in-law's homemade sand plum jelly.

-I think my batter was too thin

I've read all over the 'net....

Do you leave the oven open? Shut? Convection better? No convection?

My head is spinning.

This pic is the best of the bunch.

Macarons 002.jpg

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Well Shelby, looks alright to me! I'd definitely eat that :)

Your almond meal appears to be really finely done, which is good, and it seems there is some gloss on the shell, also good.

You mention you've already done a lot of reading (there's so much out there isn't there?!) but I can recommend this website for some good tips and troubleshooting (i linked to page 3 of the series but they're all good to read). Also the eG thread is long and varied, as you probably discovered.

If you look at a few youtube videos, some of them show the "macaronage" stirring step, which may help you find the correct viscosity for the end product. Having said that, I still don't think i've really got it right yet after 6 or 7 tries, so i think it partially just takes time. But the failures still taste good!

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Well Shelby, looks alright to me! I'd definitely eat that :)

Your almond meal appears to be really finely done, which is good, and it seems there is some gloss on the shell, also good.

You mention you've already done a lot of reading (there's so much out there isn't there?!) but I can recommend this website for some good tips and troubleshooting (i linked to page 3 of the series but they're all good to read). Also the eG thread is long and varied, as you probably discovered.

If you look at a few youtube videos, some of them show the "macaronage" stirring step, which may help you find the correct viscosity for the end product. Having said that, I still don't think i've really got it right yet after 6 or 7 tries, so i think it partially just takes time. But the failures still taste good!

Thank you so much! I had no idea that macarons were such a highly talked about subject until I started Googling lol.

One question that I can't seem to find the answer to is: Does it hurt the batter to sit for a while before you pipe it on the tray?

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Good question... I feel like I read recently (in my latest bunch of readings) that it's ok - such as if you're doing multiple batches - but I'm not really sure, and i can't find where it said so. I imagine that a bit of air would start escaping, so if you had mixed it perfectly it might become slightly overmixed, but that could be wrong too. Mine aren't perfect enough yet that I noticed the difference when I split a batch (with 10 or 15 mins until i used the second half).

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Had cream on hand, craved baked custard. Made an orange and coriander custard. It's alright. Probably should've added more coriander ... or infused fresh stuff.

Edited by ChrisTaylor (log)

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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This was my fourth attempt at making macarons. I switched from the French to the Italian meringue method after the first batch. They're nicer looking than that first attempt, but still a bit chunky in places, despite grinding the almonds in a coffee mill. I need a sifter with bigger holes so that something actually comes out when I attempt to sift out the chunks. I also need to time them better. This entire batch -- all 150 or so of them -- was a bit underbaked, which was only evident after biting into one. Still, they were distributed as late Christmas gifts to about fifty people, along with ten other sweets. Thus far, no reports of gastrointestinal distress among the recipients.

chocolate macarons.jpg

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This was my fourth attempt at making macarons. I switched from the French to the Italian meringue method after the first batch. They're nicer looking than that first attempt, but still a bit chunky in places, despite grinding the almonds in a coffee mill. I need a sifter with bigger holes so that something actually comes out when I attempt to sift out the chunks. I also need to time them better. This entire batch -- all 150 or so of them -- was a bit underbaked, which was only evident after biting into one. Still, they were distributed as late Christmas gifts to about fifty people, along with ten other sweets. Thus far, no reports of gastrointestinal distress among the recipients.

chocolate macarons.jpg

Any reports of "Oh, yummy" ? They sure LOOK beautiful!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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Abooja, those are lovely! The only macarons I've ever had turn out even halfway successfully were the Pierre Herme recipe. Every other ones were unmitigated failures. One of the bakeries in town (Portland, OR) does a macaron class about once every three months. I'm thinking I might jump in on the next one.

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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This was my fourth attempt at making macarons. I switched from the French to the Italian meringue method after the first batch. They're nicer looking than that first attempt, but still a bit chunky in places, despite grinding the almonds in a coffee mill.....

*THOSE* are gorgeous ! Congrats.

--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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Nothing is worse than macarons not working, mainly because or the cost of the nuts/nut flour. I wanted espresso macs, and after two failed attempts (one French method and one Italian, which I have never liked), I went back to a previous recipe, modified it a little bit, and had success. I guess I was out of practice, it's been a while since I made them. Got a couple more flavors to make tomorrow, hopefully they won't give me grief :).

024b.jpg

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Nothing is worse than macarons not working, mainly because or the cost of the nuts/nut flour. I wanted espresso macs, and after two failed attempts (one French method and one Italian, which I have never liked), I went back to a previous recipe, modified it a little bit, and had success. I guess I was out of practice, it's been a while since I made them. Got a couple more flavors to make tomorrow, hopefully they won't give me grief :).

Very cool !

--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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Well no macarons, but I made this cake and these cupcakes for a birthday party for one of my daughter's friends this weekend. The cake is chocolate buttermilk cake with chocolate sour cream frosting, and the cupcakes are yellow cake with oreos mixed into the batter and oreo cream cheese frosting. She'd requested "green" and "with a doggie" Not a lot to go on, but that's what you get when the client is three!

ainsley cake.jpg

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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Well no macarons, but I made this cake and these cupcakes for a birthday party for one of my daughter's friends this weekend. The cake is chocolate buttermilk cake with chocolate sour cream frosting, and the cupcakes are yellow cake with oreos mixed into the batter and oreo cream cheese frosting. She'd requested "green" and "with a doggie" Not a lot to go on, but that's what you get when the client is three!

ainsley cake.jpg

Adorable! :wub:

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