Macaroon or Macaron?

Macaroon or Macaron?  I believe that Macaron is the correct term for what I’m about to discuss, but Macaroon sounds less pretentious so I’ll stick to that one!

Three years ago I started upon a quest to teach myself how to make the perfect macaroon.  I’ve used countless egg whites and kilos of ground almonds, icing sugar and caster sugar on my journey and I believe that I’ve now cracked it.  Having tried several different methods, the one that seems to work for me 99.9% of the time is the French Meringue method.  This is when you whisk your egg whites to a soft peak and then gradually add your caster sugar until the egg whites are thick and glossy before combining with the ground almonds and icing sugar mixture.  The weather always likes to throw a spanner in the works every so often, as if it’s too humid then your macaroon shells won’t dry out properly and will crack when baked.  Good example of a cracked shell in the below image, in the middle.

Mari Mobile Awst - Rhag 2012 081

 

I don’t quite know the exact science behind it all, but I think because I’ve been through batches that have all had their own issues, I’ve taught myself how to fix them so that it doesn’t happen again.  Practice makes perfect in my opinion, and although it can be a bit of a ‘ffaff’ unless you persevere then you’ll never learn.  Patience is key to learning new skills, and as an amateur baker and a keen foodie, spending loads of time in the kitchen tweaking recipes is heaven to me!

Mari Mobile Awst - Rhag 2012 080

 

Having nailed the macaroon, I then went on to experiment with flavoured fillings.  I find that the shells are so sweet that I often just fill the them with a dark chocolate ganache to balance out the sweetness, but other fillings I’ve made include white chocolate ganache flavoured with cardamom seeds, buttercream with jam, fruit gel (I’ll discuss this one in another post soon!), peanut butter and cream cheese – this with melted chocolate and roasted peanuts makes the most delicious ‘Snickers’ macaroon, a particular favourite in my family!  Of course, you can flavour your ganache using extracts and oils, for example peppermint or rose…basically you can make any flavour combination you like, even savoury!

I’m still experimenting with savoury flavours, so will continue to do so and post about that experiment soon.

Advertisements

4 responses to “Macaroon or Macaron?

  1. I’ve always had problems with macarons as well! It’s always a hit or miss when making them! Especially problematic when mixing colourings! Though powder colourings helped a lot in the end. So glad to know someone who is good baking also had problems with these!

    • Thank you for your comment! I think it’s true with lots of baking techniques and skills, as an amateur you learn by your mistakes! It helps if you’re stubborn and determined too I think!

  2. Becs! You know, I think we’re mirror images from afar – a ying & yang perhaps. I was a macaron maniac over the past few years, but with busier schedules, I now end up buying more than producing. Yuri gave me your blog site, and I can’t wait to follow! I love your love of baking, and I hope everything goes well with the Great Bake-Off!! You’re living my dream 🙂
    XOX – Emily, U.S.A. baby

    • Couz! So lovely to hear from you and so pleased you guys now know about the programme!! I have a book here signed and will get it in the post to you this week…a thank you for the gorgeous cake stand you sent over!! Been a bit lazy this week with the Blog as I’ve been busy, but keep following as I have loads of stuff to go up!! We are so mirror images Emily, just wished you live closer!! Lots of love! Becs xxx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s