Introduction: Perfect Macaroons

About: luca-nz-18

If your a beginner out there who wants to make something to impress, whether it's for a birthday, or you have a craving :D this is for you! This Instructable involves how to make some macaroons, tips and tricks to help, and of course, different fillings for inside those little fluffy treats. I don't know whether they are spelt macarons or macaroons, but that's for you to decide... I'm only a beginner cook at 13, so I must have just had some beginners luck on this one.

Step 1: Materials Needed.

Some of the materials you will need to make macaroons include:

  • 2 Mixing bowls
  • 2 Baking trays lined with non-stick baking/parchment paper
  • Electric Beater
  • Piping bag and round tip with 1 cm (1/2 inch) opening OR Zip Lock bag with corner cut off
  • Kitchen scale
  • Spatula
  • Sifter or Fine sieve
  • Food processor

Step 2: Ingredients for Macaroons.

The ingredients to make the macaroons are:

  • 3 Egg Whites
  • 210 grams Icing Sugar
  • 125 grams Almond Meal/ Ground Almonds
  • 30 grams Caster Sugar
  • Food Colouring Paste (optional)

Step 3: Start Making the Macaroons!

Almond meal and Icing sugar:

  1. Place the almond meal in the food processor with the icing sugar, and process for a minute or two.
  2. Stop the processor, and scrape the sides and bottom of the inside, and process again for another minute.
  3. Place a sieve over one of the bowls, and pour half of the mix into the sieve.
  4. Sieve that mix using a spoon. Some bigger almonds will stay in the sieve, so throw those away or eat them to ensure a smooth batter.
  5. Repeat with the other half of the mix.
  6. Reserve this sieved mixture for later.

Step 4: Macaroons, Egg Whites.

Egg Whites:

  1. In the second mixing bowl, pour in the egg whites and beat at medium high speed.
  2. When the egg is bubbly and the whisks are leaving marks, add the caster sugar gradually in the next minute or so.
  3. Keep beating for 3-4 minutes. Trust me, its worth it in the end!
  4. Do this until the egg whites are stiff, and making thick and creamy peaks. The egg white should no longer be as bubbly.
  5. Add colouring, a few drops at a time if you would like colourful macaroons, and fold it in delicately.
  6. If the shade of the colour isn't what you want, add more and fold it in.

Step 5: Macaroons, Mixing.

Mixing all the ingredients together:

  1. Add 1/3 of the previous almond and icing sugar mix to the egg whites, and keep folding delicately.
  2. DON'T BEAT THE MIX!! Whatever you do, beating the mix is like abuse to the macaroons.
  3. The batter will seem to curdle, but as you fold it will turn creamy again.
  4. Repeat the same with the other 1/3's, so no dry pockets of mix remain.
  5. In the end, your batter is quite thick, creamy and has a shine to it.

Step 6: Macaroons, Piping.

Here's how to pipe the macaroon mix, and rest it:

  1. Twist the tip of the piping bag to make sure no mixture escapes and doesn't pour out.
  2. Place the piping bag into a cup or measuring jug and fold the back about 1 inch (2.5 cm) outside itself so its easier to place mix inside.
  3. Carefully pour around about half the mixture into the piping bag.
  4. Get your trays ready with the non-stick baking/parchment paper, and you can either print out a free template (link below) or draw 1 inch (2.5 cm) circle onto the paper.
  5. Unfold the paper and twist the bigger end to squeeze the batter down to the tip.
  6. Pipe out macaroons, making them as equal sizes as possible (this is where the template comes in handy!)
  7. To make circle macaroons easily, keep the tip of piping bag close to the tray and lift quickly when the mix has poured out.
  8. Once they are all piped, bang the sheets on a flat surface (like a table) to flatten out the shells and to get rid of air bubbles so they don't crack.
  9. Don't forget to take the template out!
  10. If you have little peaks, wet your finger with water and gently spread the mix so its flat.(this is optional)

Step 7: Macaroons, Resting.

Resting is very important for the sake of these macaroons :) :

  1. The macaroons need to form a crust so they can have that little funny ledge on the side of a macaroon called its "feet". If you have that, you definitely have been successful in making them! Resting the macaroons helps form those "feet".
  2. If you have a nice, sunny day, the macaroons will only need to rest for around 20-30 minutes.
  3. If your suffering (not really) with a rainy or humid day, you may need to rest the macaroons for longer between 40-50 minutes to make sure you get those "feet" and a slight crust around the macaroon.

Step 8: Macaroons, Baking.

Now, this is very important, I mean, you wouldn't want under cooked macaroons! Ew, Gross!

  1. Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius (300 degrees Fahrenheit).
  2. Place macaroons in the oven for 14 minutes. Test their done by tapping on a shell, when they are ready they are firm on the "feet".
  3. Let the shells cool completely before removing them from the baking/parchment paper. They should be easy to lift off.
  4. Get creative with the flavourings for inside the macaroons in the next step. Congratulations on making Macaroons!! :D

Step 9: Macaroons, Filling.

It all now depends on what flavour of macaroon you want to have, here is a few of my favourites:

Chocolate Filling: In saucepan, heat 1/4 cup whipping cream over medium heat until small bubbles form around side of pan. Stir in 60 g bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped, until melted. Stir in 1 tbsp butter until smooth. Transfer to bowl and let cool until thick enough to spread.

Pistachio Filling: In food processor, pulse together 2/3 cup icing sugar, 1/3 cup shelled pistachios and pinch cardamom until fine. Add 2 tbsp butter, softened. Tint with green food colouring. Pulse to form paste.

Coconut Cream Filling: In bowl, place 4 tbsp butter, 4 tbsp cream of coconut, and 1/2 cup vegetable shortening. Using beaters beat on medium speed until smooth. Add 1 1/2 cup icing sugar and 2 tsp coconut extract and beat until pale and fluffy.

You can go and have a search on google and find some more, or just use buttercream icing flavoured to do the job.

Step 10: Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Macaroons and FAQ:

You can use a stand mixer or a hand held one, it doesn't matter as long as those egg whites look creamy!

Remember, practice make perfect! I know its cliche, but it is definitely true for macaroons. Even if they fail, remember what you did wrong and try again.

I suggest having a template on a piece of baking paper, so you can re-use it by placing it under another piece (the ones the macaroons will be on) and piping it like that. You won't need to remove it from underneath the macaroons before baking, so less risk of a disaster happening.

Don't have a piping bag? Just use a zip-lock bag and cut the corner off. Should work just the same.

Q: Do Macaroon taste better if you leave them with the filling overnight? A: If you fill it with a flavoured filling, it will give the flavours a chance to co-operate with the shells and mingle the flavours. So yes, it does.

Q: Is there a way to make macaroons without nuts? A:

Q: Can you substitute the almond meal with anything else? A: Different nuts ground down, or the above nut free recipe.

Q: Can you use grease-proof paper instead of non-stick baking paper? A: No, the bottom of the macaroon will stick to it and ruin your little buddies!

Q: My macaroons more have a skirt than feet. Why? A: Oven temperature is too low, try increasing by 10 degrees and see how it goes.

Q: Can I use liquid colour? A: Yes, but only a tiny amount, if you add too much the macaroons have too much moisture in them.

Q:My macaroons turned out lumpy, why? A: Most likely under mixed the mixture, so next time make sure its evenly mixed.

Q: Can I use normal sugar instead of caster sugar? A: Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't so your better off using caster sugar.

Q: What is almond meal? A: Almond meal is almonds that have been blanched (Skin removed) and ground finely. Aka Almond Flour.

Q: Can I put two trays in at a time? A: You can, but the best results are with one in the oven at a time.

Q: Can I use less sugar? A: No, the macaroons will come out flat, like they have been over-mixed.

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