French Macarons are a popular dessert often referred to as “cookie sandwich”.
Being lovely to look at and even better to eat when done well you may be tempted to attempt to make your own batch.
People new to making macarons usually encounter issues that they do not expect, the most common issue is the macaron batter consistency causing them to become chewy.
We do not want a batch of failed french macarons and this may cause you to think if your macaron recipe was wrong but do not worry.
Keep reading to not only learn how to make french macarons but how to avoid any traps that newcomers tend to fall into.
In this article you will find the best macaron tips to make sure even the most basic recipe will not fall into these traps, so you can enjoy your perfect crispy macaron shells .
Why Are They Chewy?
Overbaking is the most common cause of baking french macarons as they come out too chewy.
If you kept your french macarons in the oven too long or had the oven temperature too high then this will result in your macarons being chewy.
Having a higher oven temperature can also result in cracked macarons.
To fix the issue to the oven temperature you can use an oven thermometer to ensure that the heat causes the macaron batter to form those perfect macarons shells.
When it comes to overbaking you should bake macarons until they are chewy but not too chewy. If you find your macarons are too chewy then you know it is a result of the baking process.
In this situation you should check if you followed the french macaron recipe calls to the tea. Macaron recipes will all tell you different ways to bake your macarons.
A french macaron recipe will differ from an Italian method where Italian meringue is used.
No matter how the macaron batter turns out you should always make sure to track the time of baking to the second.
Why Did My Macarons Crack?
Having your macarons crack is always disheartening but it is a simple fix.
Air bubbles in the batter are the cause and can be fixed by wrapping your baking tray against a surface after you pipe your macarons to remove any air bubbles.
Another reason may be that your oven temperature is not consistent and has hot spots.
This can be fixed by pre heating and using your oven thermometer to ensure the oven is hot enough and their is not too much air that will cool the oven.
Should You Sperate Eggs Yourself
Egg whites in a carton can be bought in shops however those egg whites will not be ideal for macarons and will be to room temperature.
The heat from the egg whites being pasteurized will affect the essential proteins required to make macarons. To make the best macarons you should separate your own egg whites.
The reason for this is fresh egg whites will have the proteins required.
Aged Egg Whites
What are aged egg whites well aged egg whites are the egg whites that have been separated from the yolk.
The egg whites are separated at least a day before this helps the proteins in the egg to relax.
Doing this prevents your whipped egg whites from becoming over whipped when using an electric mixer and eventually producing failed macarons.
So, separate your fresh egg whites and then keep the egg whites in your fridge in an airtight container to keep the egg white safe and also remain fresh.
Doing this 24 hours before you plan to bake will make sure that the egg white does not get over whipped and result in air bubbles.
Why Almond Flour Is Best
The best flour to make macarons is almond flour, be it your own almond flour or store bought almond flour the result will be the same.
As the name suggests almond flour is made entirely of almonds.
Almond flour differs from other flours due to almond flour being a nut flour, using regular all purpose or bread flours would cause the macaron batter consistency to be more like an angel cake.
This is why almond flour is the only flour for macarons as without almond flour they would be impossible to make and the macaron batter would be a mess.
Can I Add Food Coloring To My Macaron Batter
Yes, you can add food coloring to your macaron batter.
Gel food coloring is recommended over liquid coloring due to the macaron batter being delicate. It is best to add gel food coloring to the french macaron better before baking.
Is Piped Batter The Method For Spreading
Piped Macarons will spread quicker due to having a piping bag full of thin batter instead of the ticker macaron batter needed.
Thin batter can be caused by under-whipped egg whites.
Your macaron batter should be thick, yet runny enough to fall into a ribbon once it comes out of the piping bag and the spatula is lifted.
Parchment Paper Or Silicone Baking Mat
There is no big difference between parchment paper and silicone baking mats. Macarons on a silicone baking mat may take longer to bake than those on parchment paper.
The see-through nature of parchment paper makes using a piping bag easier as you can see on the parchment paper where you are piping.
Printing out a template and using the piping bag to trace over the parchment paper will produce perfect macarons every-time.
So it is entirely up to you as to whether you want parchment paper or a silicone baking mat to get your baked macarons decorated.
French Macarons are a perfect snack for a party making macarons is easier than ever. So why not give it a go and find out if you have the skill to making macarons.
Baking macarons can be fun for all the family so get baking macarons.