Tuesday, August 28, 2012


I have been gone for a while, haven't I?  You know what I have been up to?

French macarons. Yes....I have finally been bitten by the macaron bug.  It's plain madness, I tell you.

For me, personally, it's not because macarons are addicting to eat.  It is not something I would actually crave for. What drives me crazy is the challenge of getting it right.  I do not want to settle for anything less than perfect even if I have to do it over and over again.

If you read all that's written about the difficulties of macaron making, it is certainly very easy to be discouraged to try making them at home.  I, myself,  have been for a time, but then I started questioning my fears for two reasons.  Firstly, whipping eggwhites stiff has in fact, become second nature to me.  I do it all the time with the chiffon cake.  And when I say 'all the time', I really mean all the time.  Secondly, I do know I can pipe.  Why then should I be intimidated about piping mere circles?

And so began my macaron adventure a couple of weeks ago.  After two attempts using the Italian meringue method (one successful and one failure), I vowed I will conquer the French way!  Here are just some of my results (believe me, there are more!).

Yellow macarons with chocolate ganache.  Were quite hollow inside and too domed for me.

Pink macarons with lemon curd.  Much, much better but I still wanted it to be flatter.   But I really loved the lemon curd!

Chocolate macarons with Nutella. 

I really thought the chocolate macarons were already perfect.  There wasn't a single cracked shell in my two trays and everything looked uniformly sized and smooth.  But alas, even after 20 minutes of baking, a lot of the shells were still a little undercooked and still stuck to the baking paper.  They were also more delicate than usual.  Cracked really easily when not handled very gently.

Looks like the trying isn't over then.  I did buy some silicone mats and eggwhite powder online and will see if the macarons will bake differently using them.  In the meantime, I really have to hold  myself back.  These macarons aren't doing any good for my weight!