I have been obsessed with macarons lately. It’s a love affair and I’m not gonna stop it.
Who needs Jimmy Choo’s, when you have lovely macaron feet! 😛
I use the Italian method to make macarons, because it’s so much easier to make with stabilised egg whites, as opposed to the delicate French method which does not bode well with Singapore humidity and heat.
There are lots of italian macaron recipes you can find, one of which is Love and Macarons’. Essentially, the ingredients are all the same in the various recipes, but the amount may vary. In this post, I do not wish to copy and paste the recipe used, but rather, provide you with some helpful tips to decorate and bake.
1. You do not need cream of tartar
With the Italian method, the egg whites have been stabilished ie heated up, so there is no need for cream of tartar
2. Always use gel food colouring
You do not want to change the liquidity and consistency of the macaron batter, so you should always use gel food colouring. If you insist on any other type of food colouring, be my guest, but be careful with how many drops you put in. BUT note that oil-based food colouring must never be used.
3. Use parchment paper – NOT greaseproof baking paper
It was the ultimate disaster when I used greaseproof paper. It makes the macaron base stick the sheet, such that the top cracks and feet are never formed. Parchment paper is coated in teflon, which prevents your macarons from sticking, and allows it to rise and form those lovely feet.
I also noticed that different parchment paper brands require different oven temperatures, so experiment a little bit before piping your macarons all at one go.
4. Each oven is different
The recipe I use requires the macarons to be baked at 130C for 20 minutes. However, each oven is different – even an ariston – so I now bake it at 140C for 25 minutes.
5. You do not need to sift your ground almond flour
The good thing about the Italian method is that you do not need to sift your almond flour (although you still have to sift your icing sugar). I’m not sure why exactly, but I’ve used sifted and unsifted almond flour, and they both make wonderful macarons. If you prefer a chewier and stiffer macaron, I suggest you don’t sift the almond flour.
6. If your macarons stick to the paper even after baking…
And if they do have feet, then they are undercooked. Simply put them back in the oven for another 5 minutes. Alternatively, you could put them in the freezer!
Hope these tips help, and have a freshly-baked Monday!
In the buzz-iness of life, always find time to bake some macarons… 🙂