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Happy Valentines Day-The Elusive Macaron And Percy’s Gotcha Day

Making a perfect macaron has eluded me for years. My first attempt was a big fail as was my second attempt. The first time I tried the French method where you add a warm sugar syrup to the egg whites with the mixer running is not a good idea for me, I have sugar strings flying everywhere and the macaron didn’t develop feet and were flat and pretty bad. The second time I used a recipe I found on Martha Stewart, there were steps and ingredients missing and I think amounts were off so another fail. Not being one to give up I found a Martha Stewart video with a recipe and I had a feeling this one would work. I followed the instructions to the letter, now there was one very important step (letting the macaron sit for about an hour before baking so they develop a skin) this was omitted, but having done research I knew to add that and by jove they turned out. They are not perfectly sized, some are a bit misshapen it will take some time to really master the piping of the batter but not bad!

Macaron are tricky, and following directions and measuring/weighing is really important. This recipe is very specific, I didn’t deviate at all. These delicious and delicate French cookies have been on my bucket list for a while, after my first fail I became discouraged and decided not to even try it again for a while. I am going to give you step by step instructions and if you follow you too can make macaron.

February 13 was also a very special day, it was the 2 year anniversary of when Percy came to live with me, his gotcha day. He is doing very well and is my best friend and the most amazing dog. Happy gotcha day Mr. P!!  You can view Martha’s recipe and video by clicking here.

French Macaron

Recipe by Martha Stewart

Makes 1 dozen

2 large egg whites at room temperature

1/4 cup granulated sugar

pinch of salt

71 grams finely ground almond flour (NOTE: you can use blanched slivered almonds and make your own flour) approximately 2/3 cup

117 grams powdered sugar – approximately 1 cup

gel food color if desired (start with one drop and add more depending on how deep you want the color)

Place almond flour (if using sliced almonds process first to a fine powder and then add the powdered sugar)  and confectioners sugar in food processor and process until mixed thoroughly and the almond flour is finely ground. Pour through a sieve and if you have more than a tablespoon of the mixture left in the sieve, place that in the processor and give it a good whiz and pour through the sieve again. Set aside. It is very important to remove any larger pieces of almond, it should be very very fine.

Heat oven to 350,  make sure rack is in the bottom third of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Pour the egg whites, granulated sugar and salt in stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Beat on 4 (setting) for 2 minutes, turn up the speed to 6 and beat another 2 minutes, change speed to 8 and beat another 2 minutes. At this time add the food coloring and mix to combine. Remove bowl from the mixer and add all of the flour sugar mixture at once. Using a spatula fold from bottom swiping up 37 times, the batter will loosen. It’s important to do this 37 times according to Martha who got it from an expert.

Folded 37 times and ready to pipe

Fit a pastry bag with a 3/8 inch round tip (Ateco #804) place inside a tall glass (believe me this is important since the opening of the tip is quite large the batter will leak out. Pour the batter into the bag (tip down) and secure.  Carefully pipe a small amount (about 3/4 inch) on the parchment spacing each about 2 inches apart. Tap the pan twice lifting a couple of inches and dropping onto the counter. Leave the macaron to sit for an hour even a little longer is fine. It’s important for them to develop a skin, you can actually see the change the top will become dull and look quite different once the skin develops it traps moisture in while baking making them puff and develop feet.

Bake in the 350 degree oven for 13 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit on the sheet pan until cooled. Carefully remove the rounds, they are delicate so work gingerly. Turn over every other one as you will pipe some filling on the bottom and sandwich the other on top. The macaron should have developed feet see photo below.

the curly edge is called feet

I had some of the French buttercream and a little ganache leftover from the other cake and thought it would make a nice filling. I put the buttercream into the mixer added 1 ounce melted dark chocolate and 2 tbs of the ganache and whipped it. After you pipe a dollop of the filling onto the cookie place the other cookie on top and VERY gently press down so that the filling reaches the edge of the cookie.

You can fill with ganache, jam or buttercream. Nutella would also be delicious. You can add flavoring or different colors to the macaron shells, to make chocolate all you have to do is remove 1/4 cup of the almond flour and replace with unsweetened cocoa powder. I plan on experimenting with different flavors and colors.

Percy with his monogrammed bandana Happy Gotcha day Buddy!!

35 Comments Post a comment
  1. Your macarones look very delicious, Suzanne. I haven’t maid macarones this way before, only without almond flour and with different recipes. Many years ago, I bought coloring in a health shop to avoid the artificial colors, because my kids had problems with those and other kind of additives. These work very well for macarones too.

    February 14, 2018
    • I want to find natural powdered food color or flavoring have to search for that. Thank you so much Irene.

      February 14, 2018
      • You are welcome. Back then the natural colors were liquid, but maybe you can find them in powder today.
        I rarely use colors today in my baking, while I don’t have any kids in the house any longer. But I used those colors for my marzipan too and the kids loved them and I was happy to allow them something with colors.

        February 14, 2018
  2. Maria DeBrango Stickel #

    Happy Valentine’s Day, Suzanne and Percy! We celebrate Gotcha and Birthdays for our 2 loves as well today.
    Your Macaroons are gorgeous!
    Love you!

    February 14, 2018
    • Happy Valentines day Maria, thank you so much! Love you and have a wonderful day.

      February 14, 2018
  3. Of course you can make macarons. I simply adore them. I can tell by looking at them they are difficult to make. You never cease to impress me with your mad cooking skills.

    February 14, 2018
    • Thanks Michelle, after 2 fails I was so thrilled to have this batch turn out. Happy Valentines Day!!

      February 14, 2018
  4. Aww — happy Gotcha Day to Percy! This is a lovely post, Suzanne. I always enjoying reading about how you came to just the right recipe. And the cookies are so pretty! I loved macaroons.
    Happy Valentine’s Day hugs to you and Percy from Crystal and me.

    February 14, 2018
    • Happy Valentines Day Teagan, thank you so much. It’s so hard to believe it’s been 2 years now that Percy has been with me. He is such a love!! Have an awesome day!!

      February 14, 2018
  5. sed30 #

    Reblogged this on sed30's Blog.

    February 14, 2018
  6. Happy Valentine’s Day, Suzanne and Percy. We love you! Your macarons are gorgeous!! ❤️

    February 14, 2018
    • Happy Valentines Day Em, thank you so much. I am following your kitchen renovation. Just read todays post, OMG!!! Love from me and Percy!!

      February 14, 2018
  7. Wow! 2 years already?? That’s flown!
    The macarons look amazing 😃😃😃😃😃

    February 14, 2018
    • I know right!!! 2 years, he is such a sweetie I’m very lucky to have him. Thank you so much.

      February 14, 2018
      • That’s lovely xx I hope you’re well sweetie xx

        February 14, 2018
  8. This is on my list to try but it’s a bit intimidating. I have to just go for it. Thought of you yesterday at Michael’s as they had a bunch of pug stickers and planner stuff in clearance.

    February 14, 2018
    • Well I failed twice but this recipe if you follow instructions works. Oh I love pug stuff, collect pug mugs and notebooks etc!!!

      February 14, 2018
  9. Awww Happy Gotcha Day Percy! And Happy Valentine’s Day to you Suzanne! So I have a foodie blogger Sally I follow who I call the Queen of Macarons. Perhaps you should pop over there and peruse all her macarons. She, like you, started on the quest for the perfect macaron and I thinks she’s mastered it beautifully. Plus she’s a delightful person and a huge dog-lover to boot. Here’s one of her macaron posts for starters:

    February 14, 2018
  10. I‘ve never had the courage to attempt making Macarons, but honestly your detailed description has given me confidence enough to give it a try (and made my mouth watering!)

    February 14, 2018
  11. Happy Gotcha Day, Percy. Looking good in your bandana! You created pretty displays for your macarons, Suzanne. Happy Valentine’s Day.

    February 14, 2018
  12. I am so impressed, Suzanne! Macarons scare me, but oh how I love to eat them. And two years have flown by so quickly!

    February 15, 2018
  13. Love the Percy portrait Suzanne!!! And you are so intrepid to track down the perfect method/recipe for these macaroons! They’re beautiful! Wish I could have dropped in with a valentine and tried one! You really are the most amazing baker! xox

    February 16, 2018
  14. Happy Belated Gotcha Day. Suzanne, you have such a handsome boy there 🙂
    Your macaroons look amazing…. Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

    February 17, 2018
  15. These look amazing!

    February 19, 2018
  16. Suzanne, these macarons look fantastic! I’m still struggling trying to perfect them so I gotta try this soon!

    February 20, 2018
  17. petra08 #

    Happy Percy’s Gotcha Day! You did celebrate in style! The macaroons looks absolutely gorgeous, and delicious! I love the filling, very impressive 🙂

    February 20, 2018
  18. Sandhya #

    Happy Gotcha day to you and Percy! I cannot believe it has been two years! Time flies when you have great friends, right?You both are blessed to have each other.
    your patience with the macarons, making them over and over again and perfecting the recipe, has certainly paid off! They look perfect! You are a gifted baker, Suzanne.

    February 24, 2018
  19. You nailed the macarons! Wawsie! Well done! Percy looks great with that bandana!

    March 8, 2018

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