Makes about 80 macarons.
- Prep time: 1h 40min + resting time
- Cook time: 20min
- Total time: 2h
- Difficulty: Advanced
This recipe was adapted from Gesine Bullock-Prado’s Sugar Baby. Before you begin baking, read through the recipe several times to become acquainted with the procedure. Use aged egg whites and carefully weigh all ingredients for the best results. Cover the baked and cooled shells with a kitchen towel and leave them on the counter overnight. The shells improve with age, but only if the weather is cool and dry. On a hot day, the macarons will become soggy. Macaron shells can be frozen for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container; thaw for 1 hour before serving. Keep the filled macarons at room temperature in an airtight container. They will become soggy if placed in the refrigerator.
For the Parisian macaron shells.
- 210g almond flour
- 200g confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons Matcha green tea powder
- 150g egg whites (about 5)
- pinch of salt
- 200g granulated sugar
- 60ml water
In a food processor, combine the almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, and green tea powder. Process the mixture until it is very fine. Set aside the mixture after sifting it into a large mixing bowl. Combine 90g of egg whites and the salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the granulated sugar and 60 ml of the water. Stir until the sugar is completely melted, then remove the candy thermometer and set aside. When the sugar temperature reaches 98°C (210°F), start beating the egg whites on high speed. Before adding the sugar syrup, they should be foamy. Continue to heat the sugar until it reaches 116°C (240°F). Remove the sugar syrup from the heat immediately. While the egg whites are whipping, carefully pour the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl. Whip until soft, white peaks form – the tips of the peaks should still fall easily. Add the remaining 60ml of egg whites to the almond flour mixture and combine to make a paste just before the egg whites are finished whipping. If you do this too soon, the paste will harden. Transfer one-third of the egg white mixture to the almond flour paste and stir until no white streaks remain. You don’t have to be too gentle with this addition because you’re just loosening and lightening the batter. Fold the remaining egg whites into the batter gently. The consistency should be loose but not runny. When you finally start piping the batter, it should move easily from the piping bag but not pour out. So, if you think your batter is too stiff, keep stirring until it loosens up a little. Fill a pastry bag with a large open tip with the batter. On a nonstick baking mat or parchment-lined baking sheet, pipe round, 2.5-3cm dollops about 1cm apart. Allow the macarons to sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes after the last bit is piped. Preheat the oven to 135°C in the meantime. Bake the macarons for 20 minutes, rotating the tray once during baking to ensure even baking and avoid browning. After 5 to 10 minutes of baking, you’ll notice little ruffles forming around the edges of the shells; these are known as pieds, or “feet” in French. Allow the shells to cool completely after removing them from the oven. If you have time, leave them at room temperature overnight before filling. Pipe a small blob of chocolate ganache on one shell and smoosh it with another shell, just until the filling reaches the edge. Serve immediately after filling the shells. They can be kept at room temperature in an airtight container. Keep them out of the refrigerator or they will become soggy.
For the Chocolate ganache filling.
- 120g bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 120ml heavy cream
- 20g butter, at room temperature
Set aside the chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl. Bring cream to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Allow to stand for 5 minutes, or until the chocolate has softened. Stir in the butter until smooth. Allow to cool for 20 minutes or until piping hot. Every now and then, give it a good stir.
I kept coming back to the Parisian Macaron Shells recipe as I was flipping through the Sugar Baby pages. I’d made French macarons before with great success, but never with the Italian meringue method. I just knew I had to give it a shot. Macarons are notoriously difficult to make, but with Gesine’s detailed recipe and instructions, you can’t go wrong.The recipe worked perfectly, and the macarons were a hit.
Before you begin a macaron bake off, read through the recipe several times to familiarize yourself with the process.It is critical to carefully weigh all of your ingredients, including the egg whites. “Not all egg whites are created equal,” Gesine explains.It’s also best to use aged egg whites, which means separating the eggs the night before and leaving the egg whites at room temperature wrapped in a kitchen towel. This allows them to lose some of their moisture and makes macaron shells more successful. The recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of powdered egg whites, which I didn’t have, so I used real egg whites instead. To clarify, 1 tablespoon powdered egg whites + 2 tablespoons water equals 1 regular egg white. (30g).
I decided to use Matcha green tea powder to flavor my macarons and sandwich them with a chocolate ganache.I sprinkled cocoa nibs and dried hibiscus flowers on top of the shells. They were fantastic. They make an excellent holiday treat.
There’s only one thing about this recipe that bothers me. According to the book, the recipe yields approximately 200 macaron shells, or 100 finished French macarons. I ended up with about 160 shells, which is equivalent to 80 macarons. I piped them quite small, about 2.5-3 cm in diameter, and there’s no way you’ll be able to get 200 of them. At the very least, I couldn’t.