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Posted by admin on August 27, 2015
As dismal as the weather has been this week in London it has given us a reason to never want to leave the kitchen, and as a result we have spent many an hour trying to perfect our macaroons.
There seem to be a mind boggling number of variables that go into making the perfect macaroon so we thought we would tackle some of them on this blog.
For most people the making of macaroons is fraught with anxiety and frequently beyond frustrating but you certainly do not need to be a professional and they are not impossible to make.
4 large egg whites
70g caster sugar
230g icing sugar
120g ground almonds
A pinch of salt
Food colouring – ideally a gel or powder
* Preheat the oven to 150°C
* Put greaseproof paper on a baking tray and draw circles using a £2 coin, turn the paper over and use as your template.
* Place egg whites and caster sugar in a stainless steel bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until the eggs are stiff enough for the bowl to be tipped upside down and they don’t fall out. Continue to mix for another 2 minutes.
* Add your colouring or gel and mix for a further 20 seconds – add more colour than you think as it fades during cooking.
* Sift the ground almonds and icing sugar twice and get rid of anything that doesn’t go through the sieve.
* Fold into the egg mixture, it should take roughly 25-30 folds using a rubber spatula. The mixture should be smooth but not runny.
* Place in a piping bag and pipe into drawn circles. Make sure you pipe from directly above the tray to get even distribution
* Rap the tray hard on your table a couple of times to get rid of any air.
* Leave to dry out for 30 minutes before putting in the oven. They will feel tacky to touch.
* Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until you can pull the macaroon off the paper quite cleanly.
* Once the macaroons are cooled remove from paper.
* Sandwich with whatever filing you choose – buttercream, ganache, lemon curd, jam etc
Every oven is different so you will need to keep an eye on the macaroons, it can take anything from 18-25 minutes. If they are browning on top put them on the bottom 1/3 of the oven with a baking tray on the top of the oven.
It does not matter how old the egg is. A whole loads of recipes ask for eggs that have been around for a while but we ignore that and stick to room temperature egg whites as our only egg rule.
Sugar is important, if you think the recipe is too sweet increase the almonds or salt rather than decrease the sugar.
Make sure you scrape the bowl as you fold in the almond mixture so that all of the meringue mixture is incorporated.
Rapping the tray is essential before putting in the oven to get rid of the air bubbles otherwise you will have cracked macaroons. If there are bubbles remaining use a skewer to pop them.
It is very important to leave for at least 30 minutes before putting in the oven. For the best macaroons the mixture should be as dry as possible.
Finally go ahead and enjoy the chef’s perks and have a fresh macaroon or 12 but they won’t be at their best until at least the next day. Keep them in the fridge for at least 24 hours after sandwiching and just bring to room temperature before eating for the best/yummiest results.
Sugar and Spice Ltd,
Battersea Business Centre,
99-109 Lavender Hill,
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