Monday, March 7, 2016



I am seriously learning something every time. Still having issues with getting egg whites to whip as stiffly as they should.  I might purchase a new hand mixer just so I can have a whisk attachment.   I also learned this time to shorten the cooking time. I went for 15 minutes.  I also cooked most of these on my large double insuleted cookie sheet and a few remaining on my small thin cookie sheet.  The cookies on the large sheet are much prettier and the ones on the small cookie sheet look slightly over done.

I used the smae macaron recipe as the strawberry macarons and used a drop or two of orange flavoring and some  orange gel coloring.  Ummm, when done these cookies seriously smell like trix cereal  :(     I am not pleased with the smell but the flavor is good. They are smaller cookies, just slightly bigger than a quarter. They are smoother and have shine. A few little bumps here and there but at least I am not getting cracks.  Now that I have said that the next batch will crack.

3 tbs butter ( I  like salted)
1 cup powdered sugar
toothpick of gel vanilla flavoring
gel yellow coloring and red gel coloring
tsp orange zest
orange juice to create correct consistency for buttercream

Not too much of an air pocket.  You shouldn't be able to see an air pocket at all.  The outside should be crisp but when you bit into the cookie it should be slightly moist but full.



I learn something new on every attempt.  This time the macarons are smaller because I printed a template from online.  I prefer the slightly larger macarons.  I purchased a macaron one time in Scottsdale and it was closer to the half dollar size. I am calling this attempt a flop even though they look good.  I cooked them the full 19 minutes just as I did the strawberry macarons and that seems to be too long. They are too crunchy, though on the internet it says too crunchy is better than under done because it will absorb the moisture from the buttercream when you allow them to ripen.  
I also had issues with the egg whites this time.  They just would not form stiff peaks. It could be that I used a plastic boil that may have had some oily residue left. Or it could be that I had dumped the egg whites and granulated sugar into the mixing bowl and let it set while I prepared all of the other ingredients.  Maybe it is because I really need my whisk attachment and can not find it anywhere.

The macarons are on the small side, they are very crunchy on the outside, with a hollow on the inside when you bite into them. Not the perfect macaron.  They are smooth and shiny though.  Practice makes perfect.

Same recipe as the strawberry macarons with a couple drops of lemon extract and yellow gel food coloring.

Lemon Buttercream

3 tbs butter ( I  like salted)
1 cup powdered sugar
toothpick of gel vanillla flavoring
gel yellow coloring
tsp lemon zest
lemon juice to creat correct consistensy for buttercream



I am always up for a challenge and macarons are definitely that challenge.  They are not a simple, whip together ingredients, plop them on cookie sheet, and bake. Nope there are many intricate steps involved to obtain the perfect macaron.   While I suppose each step is not necessarily hard they can take practice and each step is important and can not be skipped.
My First Attempt is Strawberry Macarons
Results are not too bad.  The flavor is pretty good though a bit sweet. Maybe they could have used a bit more salt. I guess the size is kind of big compared to all of the templates I have printed.  I made my own template on this batch and used my smallest measuring cup as the circle. I would say they are about the size of a half dollar.  They had a good crunch on the outside and moist on the inside without a big air bubble. The only problem really is the outside appearance.   The outside had a shine to it but was a bit lumpy looking, not the smooth appearance it should have.  I did achieve 'feet' on most of the shells  on my very first try which I am happy about.  The lumpiness I believe is due to not quite enough hand mixing when I added the almond mixture to the egg whites.  

I am using the macaron recipe from Stella on except that I cut the recipe in half.   It would just make way too many cookies for the whole batch since I am just practicing.

2 ounces almond flour
4 ounces powdered sugar
2 1/2 ounces room temperature egg whites
1 1/4 ounce sugar
scrapings of 1/2 vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp kosher salt

Strawberry Cream Cheese Buttercream
1/2 cup butter
1/2 pkg cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/4 cp powdered sugar
drops strawberry flavoring
pink or red food coloring
Heavy cream, to thin buttercream to desired consistency