Contrary to the American Macaroons made of coconut…the French Macaroons are made of almonds.
This pastry which is worldwide famous originates from North African and Middle Eastern countries – where traditionally pastries are made with almonds.
What makes French macaroons so special is the crunchy of the meringue opposed to the creamy of the ganache filling…But it is quite difficult to get this perfect balance.
These are some advice from several of the best French cooks to make the best French Macaroons!
Piece of advice number 1: Take out of the fridge the eggwhites at least the day before you make the Macaroons
Piece of advice number 2: Add the colorants right after you beat the eggwhites. If you like pastel colors, then use liquid colorant – if you like better intense colors, then use powder colorant but be careful not to put too much powder.
Piece of advice number 3: It is very important that the mix of almond powder-sugar would be very well incorporated to the eggwhites. Don’t hesitate to “break” the beaten eggwhites if needed…otherwise you will get bubbles when cooking the shell of the macaroons.
Piece of advice number 4: The baking of the shell has to be perfect: the macaroon’s shell has to be crunchy but not dry. In order to cook the exterior of the shell without drying it out, you can put 3 over plates on top of each other and bake the shells on it. This way, the extra 2 plates will prevent the shell from drying.
Piece of advice number 5: The best is to savor the macaroons 48 hours after baking them. If you wish to, you can also deep freeze your shells (and you fill them with ganache 48hrs before eating them).
You can make Macaroons with thousands of different tastes…the most famous are sweet but you can also make salty macaroons (for instance with foie gras).
Easy Macaroon Recipe we like very much – for about 10 macaroons
For the Shells
- 1 Eggwhite
- 74 grams of powdered sugar
- 42 grams of almonds (in powder)
- 10 grams of sugar
For the Ganache
- - 75 grams of praline chocolate
- - 25 grams of powdered sugar
- - 3 tea spoons of liquid cream.
Don't forget to make the macaroons 48hrs before eating them...and to take out the whiteeggs at least the day before baking the macaroons.
Blend the powdered sugar and the almond powder for quite a while. Then, sieve this mix so you get a thin powder (no impurity).
Beat the eggwhite and add 10 grams of sugar and the colorant.
Add the mix of powdered sugar and almonds mixing carefully so you don’t break the whites too much…but the dough has to be homogeneous.
Put the dough in a pipping bag and make the shells on the oven plate covered with greaseproof paper.
Let it rest for 15 minutes before baking.
Put it on the convection oven for 10 to 12 minutes at 145°C (300°F) – leaving the oven’s door ajar. Don’t hesitate to check during the baking that the shells are not drying too much. They have to remain soft inside. You will see a nice ring around the shells (see picture below)
One the macaroons are cool, you will put some ganache on the flat side of a shell and use it to stick another shell to it.
There are many recipes of ganache. To make an easy one, you can use the new baking chocolates with different flavors…for instance, we love the praline chocolate.
Melt about 75 grams of praline chocolate, then out of the fire, add 25 grams of powdered sugar and 3 teaspoons of liquid cream. Leave it in the fridge until ready to assemble the macaroons.
If you would like to come to France to learn how to make macaron or any other French dish, we can organize a cooking class with locals. See our French Itineraries for Gourmet Travelers.
Bon Apétit !