So. Queenie and I attempted to make macaroons…again. This time it actually worked out (if you over look the fact our macaroons weren’t the color they were supposed to be).
Ever since I spent time in London I have been dying to learn to make macaroons for myself because I live in the middle of no-where and trying to find good non-frozen macaroons in East Texas is like trying to find a rock star at a rodeo. It’s possible, but highly unlikely. I love, love, love macaroons. They’re not just a cookie; their colorful pieces of art–not just a cookie being extra. Each macaroon seems to have it’s own personality and flavor! I tried so many in London, I’m pretty sure I had macaroons almost every day I was there!
Living in Phoenix, I could order them from the bakery down the road from my villa, but out here, most people don’t even know what a macaroon is. And I say most because the bakers in my area know what they are but don’t know how to bake them. And even if they did, they still wouldn’t because no one around here eats them. But in Dallas I hear there’s a bakery that makes them from scratch, by hand everyday and the left overs get taken to the shelters and food kitchens. It may be just a rumor, but I intend to investigate every tea room and bakery I can find regardless.
As for baking them myself….
Our first attempt at French Macaroons ended with a kitchen covered in almond flower, a batch of hopeless crumbling cookie feet and two very sad small town, rookie bakers. This time, however we did our research, bought better ingredients and learned from our mistakes.
I knew the basics, like what it meant to have egg whites hold a peak and what the feet needed to look like. But I didn’t know what to do when the feet stuck to the wax paper, or that you’re supposed to drop the cookie sheet so the air bubbles move to the top. There’s all of these baking secrets that no one tells you so when your faced with the traumatizing issue of your beautiful double chocolate macaroon feet sticking to the wax paper you frantically toss them in the freezer hoping they’ll magically pop off like their supposed to.
Reality check: I have never gotten anything to not stick to the cookie sheet, wax paper or glass dish. Fortunately, this is the 21st century and we have google.
I’ll link the recipe we followed down below with the pictures I took of our adventure.
This time we opted for Italian Macaroons and not French Macaroons because the recipe was said to be fool proof. I read so many cooking/baking blogs that said it took them years to perfect the French Method. Well, I don’t have years. Anita and I move in less than a month and I need to have the macaroon recipe perfected for our Sunday Brunch/High tea dates out on the balcony.
We have it all planned out, I even picked out a bistro table!
Any ways, tip for making macaroons: pay attention to what side of the wax paper you put them on, buy a rubber template, and invest in gel food coloring if your not using the natural color. We wanted our vanilla macaroons to be purple so we mixed red and blue… some of the batches turned out to be an ugly grey color and we were sad. Also, if you’re a spoonie like me–get a mixer. All the hand beating and folding brought me to tears and Queenie had to take over because my hands were hurting so bad.
Also, even with all of our preparing, the feet still stuck to the wax paper. Here’s what we did:
We took the wax sheet with the feet on top and placed the sheet in warm water. We used a separate cookie sheet with warm water covering the bottom of the pan.
And for god sake whatever you do, DO NOT LET THE MACAROONS GET WET.
It’s not that hard to set the wax sheet ON TOP of the water, or at least it shouldn’t be. We however had tried to pry a few off with a spatula, so there were holes in the wax paper.*le sigh*
Once the paper sat there for a few minuets the feet popped off like they were supposed to! It was like magic! Only it wasn’t… it was an accumulation of college ingenuity and a lot of frantic googling.
We will be experimenting with flavors now that we have the basic recipe down. We made vanilla macaroons with a chocolate ganache (google that if you don’t know what it is) and they were AMAZING. Enjoy the pictures below of our Macaroon adventure part 2.
Have a wonderful week WildeKats!