Introduction: How to Make Macarons
In my Instructable, I am making chocolate macarons with peppermint buttercream frosting. I decided to make this because it seems very holiday appropriate. They would make for a good holiday dessert if you’re looking for something to make for your family and friends.
Step 1: Gather Your Ingredients
You will need...
- 130 grams of almond flour
- 125 grams of powdered sugar
- 7.5 grams of unsweetened cocoa powder
- 32.5 grams of a bittersweet chocolate baking bar
- 3 egg whites + a little more (at room temperature)
- 105 grams of granulated sugar
Step 2: Combine the Dry Ingredients
Combine the almond flour, powdered sugar, and unsweetened cocoa powder using a sift/sifter.
*It's very important to use a sift/sifter during this step because it will make your macaron shell nice and smooth. If you don't use a sift/sifter, you will end up with little lumps in your macaron shells. Also, sift the almond flour, powdered sugar, and cocoa powder through a few times to ensure no lumps in the shells. Along the way, you will get lumps while you sift. Throw these away! Don't put them back into the mixture, otherwise the batter will be all lumpy and your macaron shells will have lumps!
Step 3: Whip the Egg Whites
Whip the egg whites until it reaches stiff peaks. Start on low speed and gradually work your way up to high. Along the way, add in the granulated sugar when the egg whites are frothy. This step takes some time. For me, it took an exhausting 10 minutes. The egg whites should look glossy and be able to hold its shape in the bowl when it drips off the beater. That's when you know the egg whites have reached stiff peaks.
Step 4: Melt the Chocolate
Melt the chocolate in the microwave on 15 second intervals. Then using a spatula, roughly incorporate the chocolate into the egg mixture.
Step 5: Dry Into Wet
The last step before piping the macarons is to gently fold the dry ingredients into the chocolate egg mixture.
*Be careful on this step because you don't want to undermix or over mix. You know the batter is ready when it falls off your spatula and ribbon folds beautifully back into the bowl. It should also be able to hold its ribbon fold shape for a few seconds after it falls off the spatula. If you're batter is not ribboning at all, then crack one egg, separate the whites from the yolks, take the whites and try to, if possible, eyeball 1/4 of the egg whites you have from the egg you just cracked, and add that to your batter. This will just help loosen the batter a little.
Step 6: Pipe the Macarons
You can use a silicone mat or parchment paper to pipe your macarons. Either one works fine. To pipe your macarons, take the batter and put it in a pastry bag. If you don’t have one, you can use a plastic bag and snip off a corner which is what I did. If you want your macarons relatively the same size, you can look up and print out a template. Just make sure that there’s enough space between the macaron outlines so that they don’t end up touching like mine did. If yours do end up touching though, it’s okay. Just wait until they cool after they come out of the often and very gently try to break the shells apart. You don’t want to apply too much pressure as macaron shells are very delicate. There are a number of ways to pipe a macaron but the one I use is the one where you place the pastry bag/plastic bag above the center and squeeze the bag until the batter reaches the outline.
Step 7: Get Rid of Air Bubbles
In order to get rid of the air bubbles that form, bang the baking tray on your counter/baking surface 4 times on each side of the tray. If you see anymore air bubbles after you’ve banged the tray, take a toothpick and just pop those air bubbles.
Step 8: Let Your Macarons Rest
Now leave your macarons out for anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes. This will allow the macarons to form a skin and feet when they bake. The time that the macarons sit out for varies but it really depends on the humidity of the room. You know the macarons are ready to go into the oven when you can touch the shells and the batter doesn’t stick to your finger. While you’re waiting for the macarons to form a skin, you can preheat the oven to 300˚ F.
Step 9: Bake the Macarons
Bake the macarons for 10-15 minutes at 300˚ F. You will know the macarons are ready when they easily peel off the baking tray.
Step 10: Make the Peppermint Buttercream Frosting
Mix 2 cups of powdered sugar with 1/2 a stick of butter. Start on low speed and work your way up to medium high because you don’t want powdered sugar flying everywhere.
Step 11: Finishing the Peppermint Buttercream Frosting
Add 1/2 tbsp of milk (you can eyeball this) and 1/2 tsp of peppermint extract (or to your liking) to the frosting.
*You can add crushed candy canes and a little red food coloring to the frosting if you’d like to make these more festive.
Step 12: Filling the Macarons With Peppermint Buttercream Frosting
The last step before you can eat these delicious macarons is to fill the macaron shell with the buttercream frosting.
Take one macaron shell, pipe some peppermint buttercream frosting, then take another macaron shell similar in size, and sandwich it on top.
Step 13: Enjoy Your Macarons
And ta-da! You have your chocolate macarons with peppermint buttercream frosting. This dessert sure takes time and patience, but it’s worth it! They are delicious!
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