Macarons are fussy little cookies. Mess up one tiny lil thing and you’re gone. They require the utmost precision in their measurements and in their making. You need to invest in a good kitchen scale for such accuracy…something that I forfeited to do. I scoured the web for a recipe that had the measurements in cups and not in grams. That was mistake number one.
Mistake number two was the almond flour. Almond flour/almond meal is not available here in Pakistan, so I made my own almond flour by grinding blanched almonds. Now what happened was that my homemade almond flour refused to pass through the fine net of my sieve, no matter how many times I pulsed the almonds. After about what seemed like eons of trying to sift the almond flour, I ended up just dumping the whole thing in the mix, without sifting it. That was mistake number two. Macarons have a very fine texture, and that texture is obtained by sifting the sugar and the almond flour together a number of times. Skipping the sifting led my macaron mix to be gritty and not smooth at all.
These two critical mistakes are exactly what led my macarons to turn into maronis aka the feet-less flattened version of macarons. Seriously, maronis exist! I’m not making it up!
Maronis or not, they taste awesome. Just how any normal looking macaron would. I filled them up with several different fillings; cream cheese icing, vanilla buttercream, peanut butter, and chocolate ganache.
The ones with the chocolate ganache were obviously the best. The chewy cookie with the crackly top combined with the rich chocolate ganache tasted just like a fudgy brownie.
Macaron Round 2 will be coming soon on Spatula in My Pocket. I shall not rest till I conquer thee conniving cookies!
1 cup (100g) almond flour
1 cup (130g) icing sugar
2 Tablespoons (10g) cocoa powder
2 egg whites (70g), at room temperature
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
¼ cup cream
Dab of butter
Sift together the almond flour, icing sugar and the cocoa powder two to three times. Mix well. Set aside.
Wipe a large bowl with tissue paper soaked in vinegar to remove all grease. Beat the egg whites on medium speed till soft peaks begin to form. Slowly add in the granulated sugar. Beat on high till glossy and stiff peaks form.
Sift the almond mix over the egg whites, and fold in gently. Mix till the batter becomes smooth and if you hold some of the batter up and let it fall, it should submerge into the rest of the batter within 10 seconds. At that point stop mixing.
Transfer batter into a piping bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe out 1.5 inch rounds on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Tap the baking tray on the counter twice to release all the air bubbles.
Let the macarons rest, uncovered, for 30 to 40 minutes till dry. They shouldn’t stick to your finger if you touch them. At that point they are ready to bake.
Bake macarons at 150 degrees C for 18-20 minutes. You know they are done when they no longer stick to the parchment paper and come off easily.
Cool at room temperature.
For the ganache, microwave the three ingredients; cream, chocolate chips, and the butter, till the chocolate is melted and the mixture becomes uniform and smooth. Let the ganache cool to thicken.
Fill the macarons with the ganache.
To make your own almond flour, grind blanched almonds till they resemble fine crumbs.
Store macarons in an airtight container in the refrigerator.