Believe it or not, I had never made French macarons. Sure, I graduated from culinary school, but that doesn’t mean we made every single dessert in the world. We made more than enough, but one thing we didn’t make were French macarons.
Our last class was working at the Apple Pie Bakery and we had macarons made by the T.A. Why no one ever cared to say, “Hey, I’d love to make those..”is beyond my understanding, but I am going to bet it on the fact that we were in the last 6 weeks of school and couldn’t care less. We were overworked, under slept and free labor as well. (The under slept might be a stretch because we created CIA nap time after class, before dinner to make sure we got enough sleep, hahaha!)
Back to the French macarons. To say they’re a trend is an understatement!
So, I decided to join the maniacs and found the best recipe out there, a no b.s. recipe that told me how, what and why. Meet BraveTart. Stella is a graduate of the CIA and makes macarons every day at her job. So obviously she knows what she’s doing. She’s got an amazing “Ten Commandments” as well as “10 Myths” about macarons that will help any soul in despair! I wrote down her recipe on a note card, brought my laptop with instructions to the kitchen and baked!
That was the recipe used. My recommendation is that if this is your first time making macarons, make half a batch and see how that goes. I made an entire batch and as you will see below, my macarons had teeny-tiny feet. It kind of sucked to realize I had this huge bowl of macaron batter (that I was NOT throwing out) that I would have to pipe, knowing they’d have tiny feet no matter what. Five trays later, I was done.
I topped a few of the trays with black sesame seeds just for added cuteness! Half the macarons were filled with dulce de leche and the other half was an apple-cranberry curd I had in the fridge. Both were loved by my family, who had no idea why I was disappointed by the tiny feet. Needless to say, they gobbled them up!
After seeing the picture of my meringue and confirming it on Twitter, the reason my French macarons had teeny-tiny feet was that I needed to whip that egg foam more. I’ll definitely do that next time!
I found Stella’s directions great, but I had AMAZING support from Stella, Xialou, Mardi and Barbara. They literally (via Twitter) held my hand, reminded me to turn the pan halfway through and just gave me constant feedback on my macarons. Thank you ladies! Without you, it would’ve been almost impossible!