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Recipes & Prep Lists - PRIVATE

Parisian Macarons

Parisian Macarons


Please be sure to measure out all your ingredients before the class begins.

For this class, you will need the following equipment:

  • A Weight scale (metric, in grams) *The macaron recipe is very precise, therefore everything needs to be scaled to set yourself up for success.
  • A Stand mixer with a whisk attachment - A stand mixer is a MUST 
  • A few rubber spatula(s)
  • A Small pot with a lid
  • A fork or candy thermometer
  • A few large bowls (larger than you think you need)
  • Piping bags (reusable or 2 disposable) *these can be purchased at Bulk Barn, your local grocery store or online 
  • Piping tip (medium round tip  around 1/4" diameter- we use Ateco #803) *these can be purchased at Bulk Barn or online
  • 2 Baking Sheets with parchment or a silicone mats

Don’t forget to look in the pantry for the following ingredients, or add them to the grocery list:

  • 250g of icing sugar
  • 250g of almond flour (Grind icing sugar and almond flour together in food processor and sieve)
  • 60g of water (more may be needed for larger pot)
  • 200g of sugar
  • 200g of fresh egg whites +15g for beginners and bad weather days (tip: 1 white from an egg =30g)
  • 100g of sugar (separate to the sugar above)
  • 2 pinches of salt
  • Gel-based food colouring (optional)

For the Ganache:

  • 250g of dark chocolate
  • 250g of cream 35%
  • earl grey tea/whisky (optional)

Parisian Macarons are the hippest dessert around! Did you know there's a difference between a North American Macaroon and a Parisian Macaron?

Here's how to tell the two apart:

Macaroon: Is a dense and moist cookie typically made with coconut and is dipped in chocolate.The  main ingredients are coconut, egg white, and sugar. This cookie is characterized by its dense coconut peak and chocolate base.

Macaron: A light biscuit filled with ganache, buttercream, or jam. Main ingredients are egg whites (whipped to stiff peaks), sugar, almond flour. The confectionery is characterized by its smooth, domed top, ruffled circumference (referred to as the "foot"), and flat base. The outer shell is delicate and brittle, and the interior is moist and chewy.

The perfect Macaron:

  • 2 egg-shell like cookies with "feet"
  • Soft, moist, chewy interior
  • Decadent filling at a 2:1 ratio
  • Even sized shells

Method:

  1. Make the meringue (must pass all tests!)
  2. Fold almond flour and sugar into the meringue
  3. Pipe
  4. Bake

A number of factors can affect the quality of the Macaron, including:

  • Meringue - the most common mistake here is over beating, remember your tests!!
  • Macaronage (folding almond flour into meringue to achieve perfect consistency)
  • Oven temperature and bake time (take your oven's temperature, don't trust what the oven is telling you)

Macaron Shells

Ingredients:

  • 500g of TPT (250g icing sugar + 250g almond flour. Grind in food processor and sieve)
  • 60g of water (more may be needed for larger pot)
  • 200g of sugar
  • 200g of egg whites (+15g for bad weather days, separate from 200g)
  • 100g of sugar
  • 2 pinches of salt
  • Gel based food colouring (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 290F, no convection
  2. Pour the sugar (200g) into the middle of the pot, avoiding the sides. Add enough water to fully cover the bottom of the pot and the sugar. Place the lid on the pot and turn heat to Max.
  3. Place the egg whites in the mixing bowl using the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-high speed until bubbles form then slowly sprinkle (rain) sugar (100g). Turn the mixer down to low speed.
  4. Test #1: Steam test - Wait for steam before you remove the lid on the pot
  5. Test #2:Bubble test - You will be using your fork to test the syrup's density. The sugar should be thick enough that it sits in the prongs on the fork. Once this test is passed, remove it from the heat immediately.
  6. Turn egg whites on medium/high speed and whip until they are firm and you are able to see the whisk marks.
  7. Slowly pour in sugar syrup, aiming the stream between the whisk and side of the bowl.
  8. Continue to mix until the egg whites are firm and shiny. Add food colouring (no more than 1 tablespoon)
  9. Test #3: Meringue Trust Test - With the attachment in, flip the bowl over. The meringue should not fall out.
  10. Fold meringue into TPT in two stages,  if you are working with a smaller bowl, or all at once if the bowl is larger. Fold until incorporated. If you are using the extra 15g of egg whites for bad weather, add it at this time.
  11. Begin macaronage, continue to mix with the spatula, making sure to wipe the sides of the bowl down to ensure even mixing.
  12. Test #4: Figure 8 test - Fold the mixture onto itself to form a figure 8. Count to 10 seconds, waiting for the line to disappear.
  13. Fill the piping bag and pipe mixture into small circles on your parchment paper. Bang bottoms of tray to remove excess air and bake for 8-12 mins.
  14. Macarons are ready when they come fully off of the tray with no markings left behind. 

PLEASE NOTE: Let the macaron shells cool down before filling

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  • 600g of sugar
  • 450g of egg whites 
  • 675g of butter (soft and unsalted)
  • t.t vanilla (t.t = to taste)

Method:

  1. In a large bowl over a Bain-Marie combine egg whites and sugar and cook
    occasionally whisking to allow for even cooking.
  2. Mixture is ready when it's warm to the touch and sugar is dissolved completely (rub the mixture between your fingers, continue to cook if you feel any gritty texture.)
  3. Transfer to a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and whisk until it is  cool to the touch, approximately 25 minutes.
  4. Add softened butter gradually and whip till incorporated, then add vanilla or the flavours of your liking.

*If using buttercream for another purpose flavour the buttercream however you like, whip in extract, melted chocolate, fruit purees or even Oreo crumbs, let your creativity shine!!!

Buttercream Troubleshooting 

The number one problem with buttercream is splitting, if this happens try one of the following solutions.

With heat - Warm Buttercream slightly, this can be done by microwaving it of 10 second blasts whisking each time until it comes together.  If you like you can remove a tablespoon of the mixture, melt it completely in the microwave and add it back to the mixture.

With friction - Continue to whip buttercream in a stand mixer, sometimes it can take ten minutes to come back together.

With butter - Add more room temperature butter, do this tablespoon by tablespoon till the mixture comes back together.

Chocolate Ganache 

  • 250g of dark chocolate
  • 250g of cream 35%
  • 5g of corn syrup or glucose (optional)

Method:

  1. Chop the chocolate and place in a heatproof bowl with corn syrup.
  2. Scald the cream (do not boil) pour over chocolate and let it stand for approximately 2 minutes, stir to incorporate.
  3. Allow to cool before filling macarons.

Tip - flavour your gnash with tea, citrus peel, spices or liquors, simply steep your desired flavours in the cream while scalding allow to stand for 3 minutes and sieve over chocolate.


Below are my tips and rules to achieving the glory of mastering this tricky little sucker. 

#1 - Prep yourself!

By this I don't mean the kitchen or the ingredients, I mean you!  Get in the mindset that you "got this" and no little failure will stop you.  I always say that the biggest and most common mistake in pastry is fear.  Trust your logic and intuition, and don’t sweat when things don’t look right at every moment of the process.

Try and distract yourself, most mistakes are made when you second guess what you're doing and feel the urge to tweak or alter a recipe.  Don't! Just relax and have fun!  

Pastry is like driving, you want to look where you're going to get there, if you see a disaster you're going to get one!  Envision beautiful perfect macarons and you will be one step closer to making them, confidence is my number one key.

#2 - Know your capabilities

Not a fast cook, no sweat, cut the recipe in half, don’t bite off more than you can chew. It doesn't matter how long it takes you to master a new recipe as long as you get there.  Also by cutting recipes in half you always get another shot to try it again if it doesn't work the first time.  If it doesn't work, rejoice in the fact that you just made yourself a treat, one that you don't have to share, they will still taste the same.

#3 - Science is on your side

The Macaron is a tricky cookie because it is in fact two different cookies in one, a meringue (a mixture of well-beaten egg whites and sugar) and a Dacquoise (a mixture of nuts and meringue).  Knowing the function of the ingredients will help you solve your way through the assembly of this delicious cookie...getting you one step closer to success. 

Here are some key points:

Egg whites - contains proteins that will be the structure of the base of these cookies, in a traditional Macaron the egg whites are aged (for up to 2 weeks) to increase this protein content.  As we are in Canada aging egg whites is frowned upon by our health code.  Don’t worry about this as we simply change the assembly method to an Italian meringue versus. French.  The main thing to remember when considering egg whites is, straight from the shell is best, and their main enemy is fat (which is in almonds).

Sugar - There are many forms of sugar from granular to syrups to candy, we can utilize its versatility as a advantage, for a Italian meringue Macaron we will be using granulated sugar as an abrasive and a melted thickens syrup (fancy term, inverted sugar) as a structural element.

Almond flour - Nuts are fatty as we know, and almonds are no different.  Fat in the case of a Macaron can be used as a tool, it will help us control the air content of our meringue and is the core ingredient to our Dacquoise.

Temperature - When working with candy or sugar  (which we need to do to create the Macaron) temperature control is of major importance.  I always say, try and steer clear of digital thermometers, they need to be calibrated to perform correctly, this step is often overlooked by the home chef.  My solution is, use a mercury candy thermometer or the more accurate method of testing (with a fork and cold water, explained in the recipe).  It's much more accurate for your sugar to tell you when it's ready then a device that might be off a few degrees.

Speed - I know that my first point was to relax and don’t feel intimidated and that point still holds true.  The Macaron is not a patient cookie, so if you are not fast at piping or mixing, own it!  Take it slower with a half batch and don't rush yourself with a full recipe on your first few attempts.

Storage - You can keep macarons stored in the freezer for up to 6 months. If left at room temperature, do not leave out longer than 4 hours. 

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