French Vanilla Macarons

29 January 2012

Words alone can not describe these French petit colorful eye candies. One bite of this Vanilla Macaron and you are obsessed. Pure pleasure!

I love French macarons! These beautiful eye candies are my new obsession now. I think I am affected by the French macaron virus. I am kind of addicted. I want to achieve perfect looking, great tasting macarons. I am dreaming about them, and I have them in my mind all the time. I have long been wanting to find a recipe that will make really good macarons, and the times I have actually got a pretty good macaron shell, they have been stuck to the baking sheet or they have just not turned out as they should. Internet is full of recipes, you have the French meringue method, you have the Italian meringue method, everyone says different things, some say this works, others say the other works, and so on. It is really confusing. So I decided to search for a good French macaron book, but that too seemed to turn into a torture. Way too many books! So, finally, a book with almost only good responses and success stories, I went for the "Mad About Macarons!" by Jill Colonna. And I was not let down. I love the book and it uses the French meringue method which is so much easier (according to me). The book has some great pictures, flavor combinations and other tips. The only thing I can pick on is that she uses the same basic recipe for all the recipes and one filling recipe which is varying in color and flavors. But all in all, it is a fantastic book, because..

Finally! Finally, for the very first time I have succeed with achieving a really good French macaron. A French macaron with a good shell, a soft interior and a macaron with feet or "pied" as it is called. The last mentioned is one difficult and tricky step to achieve successfully. Last third time I made my macarons, the feet raised up so beautifully, for then to start flowing on the sides, and that ruined all the macarons. A real disappointment. My second last attempt was not any success either, the macarons blowed up and were kind of wobbly. They looked awful, but tasted delicious. The two mentioned macaron attempts were both based on the Italian meringue method, were you boil sugar syrup and add it in the meringue. It is quite difficult to work with it if you do not have a standing mixer or a person that is helping you. I have succeed with the Italian meringue method once, and the macarons turned out really good. You can see the recipe and photos here. I received the book "Mad About Macarons!" last week, and I had been aging my egg whites for 4-5 days in the fridge. So, on Friday it was my big day. I was going to try my fifth or sixth attempt on the French macarons, hoping to get beautiful and pretty macarons, the way they are supposed to be. I followed the recipe exactly, watched Jill Colonna's video, and I had all the tips I have read here and there in mind. I made the batter, piped the macarons on the sheet, let them dry for about an hour and then finally,in the oven. I was so excited! They raised up beautifully in the oven, but they started to turn brown very quickly, maybe it was the convection function?! They got some pretty feet or pied and they stayed as they were! I was relieved. My French macarons turned out so good (looking apart from the slight browning on top). I was so glad that I got them right. But there is one thing I have to work with, and that is the shape of the macarons. I have never succeed to get them perfectly round in any of my attempts. I guess I need some practice, and I need to find out proper technique for piping them out.

I have put some more egg whites in the fridge for aging, because I have to make a new batch. My older sister had never heard about or seen the French macarons before, and when I served her on Saturday, she was addicted! "They are so good!!" she said. And the macarons were gone with the wind!

These macarons are sandwiched or paired together with vanilla crème chantilly. I did not have time to make the proper filling, but even chantilly cream is so delicious in these macarons!

I am not giving out the recipe yet, I have to try some more attempts to see if they will keep the good result each time. Till then, enjoy the photos!

J'aime les macarons <3

A bite of the very delicious French macaron with Vanilla Chantilly Cream.. Mmmmm

The green macarons are so pretty to the pink..

Si beau!

Stack of macarons..


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