Who isn’t a fan of classic French Macarons? Those bite sized little bits of almond flour and meringue sandwiched around a flavorful jam (or chocolate…or anything else, the possibilities are endless) are always a hit. They look beautiful, taste great and are almost never homemade. Since these things are so delicate – they melt in your mouth – I just figured that if I tried to make them I’d end up crushing the cookies and making an utter mess.
I was gifted a macaron baking set for Christmas a couple years ago. This included a recipe guide, a silicon sheet with small circles imprinted so you could properly place the batter and a whoopee cushion style device to squirt the batter into place (in lieu of using a pastry bag). The day after I opened this present in 2014, I made macarons. I diligently followed the recipe, which was originally in French, translated to English. The recipe called for you to make your own almond flour, which I did…it was awful. It wasn’t fine enough and it was just extra work that wasn’t needed.
Fast forward to New Year’s Eve 2017. I decided to try my hand at macarons again, this time using store bought almond flour, pulled out the seldom used KitchenAid Stand Mixer and found a recipe written by a native English speaker.
I decided to substitute more confectioners’ sugar in lieu of superfine sugar only because I failed to read the recipe fully and I didn’t realize I needed two different types of sugar.
This recipe was simple and turned out really well. I do need to work on my piping skills. As I squirted the batter out, I made it too thick, so when I put the sandwiches together they were very tall. A very big mouthful macaron, not a delicate pastry. I also used a few drops of yellow food coloring to give the cookies a deeper yellow color. I filled the macarons with either store bought lemon curd or a homemade spicy passion fruit jam. These fillings were amazing additions – the spicy passion fruit filled cookies were my favorite. The sweet and spicy jam was a unique twist on the traditional French treat – it turned it into a French Polynesian treat.
Do you have a favorite macaron recipe or shop? What is your favorite flavor? Who wants to try one of my spicy passion fruit macaron?