Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Macarons: Take 3

Hello...it's been a while! Yes, I am still alive. Sorry for my lack of blogging recently, but now I have finished uni FOREVER it means I have all the time in the world to blog away to my heart's content. It still hasn't quite sunk in that it's actually over for good this time and I won't be going back. There's secretly still a part of me that thinks after summer I'll be returning to my beloved Bham and I think I'll refuse to accept it until I've actually graduated. So now there's a huge void of emptiness ahead of me, which I'm not quite sure exactly what I'll be filling it with as of yet, but in the meantime I will bake! And of course, one way I celebrated finishing my exams was by baking. I gave macarons a go for the third time last week and ended up with these pretty pink almondy lovelies. 

And I have to say, I was very proud of them. I think it's been my most successful attempt so far and some of them even had the infamous 'foot' that macarons should have, which is basically just a technical name for the  ruffly edge at the bottom. The texture inside most of them had that light signature fluffiness and I could have eaten the whole lot myself (but I'd promised to make them for a friend, so I restrained!). Sneaking a bit of my housemate's red food colouring was definitely a good idea, because the vivid colours of macarons is part of their attraction in my eyes. Of course, they were not the perfect macarons and there is still a lot of room for improvement though - they stuck horrendously to the greaseproof paper and I had to literally peel them off and they were a bit wider and flatter than I'd intended them to be. I did manage to resurrect my piping bag and disinfect it from the slug trails though (one thing I will not miss about living in a student house!), which made it a lot easier to make them all a similar size. And making the sugar syrup was a better method, because the paste was far smoother. Finally, the chocolate ganache that sandwiched between the two layers was the perfect choice for finishing them off. I mean, put a chocolate ganache in (virtually) anything and it'll instantly make it taste a thousand times better!

So, yes, give them a go! Because practice makes perfect. And one day I will make macarons that look just like all those ones I saw last year in the windows of French patisseries!

Macarons with a chocolate ganache    (makes 20 if piped to the correct size!)

Macarons: (adapted from Mary Berry's Complete Cookbook)
100g icing sugar, sifted
100g ground almonds
100g caster sugar
2tbsp cold water
2 large eggs
red food colouring
Ganache: (from The Hummingbird Bakery Home Sweet Home)
125ml double cream
110g dark chocolate, grated

  1. Begin by making the macarons and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.
  2. Combine the icing sugar and almonds in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Put the caster sugar and water into a stainless steel pan.
  4. Heat gently over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved. 
  5. Bring to the boil and boil for a few minutes without stirring, until the it becomes a clear, shiny syrup.
  6. Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
  7. Put 1 egg white into a bowl and beat with an electric whisk until stiff but not dry.
  8. Slowly pour in the sugar syrup, beating constantly until you have a shiny meringue.
  9. Add the other egg white to the icing sugar and almonds, mixing to a thick paste with a wooden spoon.
  10. Stir in a small amount of red colouring (depending on how pink you want your macarons!).
  11. Add a tablespoon of the meringue to the paste and beat well.
  12. Carefully fold in the remaining meringue mixture so it is an even pink colour, but be careful not to overmix.
  13. Fill the piping bag with the mixture and pipe rounds of about 3.5cm diameters onto each baking tray.
  14. Set aside to dry for about an hour until a skin forms on top.
  15. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 150 degrees for about 25 minutes until firm and glossy on top.
  16. Turn the oven off, but leave the macarons in to cool for about an hour.
  17. Transfer to a cooling rack with a damp palette knife.
  18. Now make the ganache by heating the cream in a pan until just boiling. 
  19. Pour over the grated chocolate and stir until it has melted completely.
  20. Set aside to thicken.
  21. Once the macarons and ganache have cooled, spread about a teaspoon of the ganache onto a macaron and sandwich together.
  22. Repeat with all of them and enjoy!


  1. how about doing take 4 now you are home? xx

  2. ha ha, it looks like somebody wants you to do another round (above)! Glad to see you're back on the baking bus! :)

    1. Yes, I think you're right!! And yep, watch this space for more baking :) Thanks for looking at my blog!