Pistachio Macarons Recipe

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Ingredients

1/2 cup ground almonds

1/4 cup finely ground pistachios, plus 2 tbsp finely chopped to decorate

1 cup confectioner’s sugar

2 extra large egg whites

1/4 cup superfine sugar

green food coloring paste or liquid

Filling

6 tbsp unsalted butter, softened

green food coloring paste or liquid

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar, sifted

2 tbsp finely chopped pistachios

Directions

Place the ground almonds, ground pistachios and confectioner’s sugar in a food processor and process for 15 seconds. Sift the mixture into a bowl. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place the egg whites in a large bowl and whip until holding soft peaks. Gradually beat in the superfine sugar to make a firm, glossy meringue. Beat in enough food coloring to give a pale green color.

Using spatula, fold the almond mixture into the meringue one-third at a time. When all the dry ingredients are thoroughly incorporated, continue to cut and fold the mixture until it forms a shiny batter with a thick, ribbonlike consistency.

Pour the batter into a pastry bag fitted with 1/2-inch/ 1-cm plain tip. Pipe 30 small circles onto the prepared baking sheets. Tap the baking sheets firmly onto a work surface to remove air bubbles. Sprinkle over the chopped pistachios. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325 °F/160 °C.

Bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes. Carefully peel the macarons off the parchment paper and let cool completely.

To make the filling, beat the butter and a little food coloring in a bowl. Gradually beat in the confectioner’s sugar until smooth and creamy. Stir in chopped pistachios. Use to sandwich pairs of macarons together.

References

Drake, A. (2011). Macarons : 30 Recipes for Perfect Bite-Size Treats. UK, Parragon Books LTD, p 20.

Image source : http://cdn.taste.com.au

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The Great French Macaron Tragedy

I have been so desperate to learn how to make french macarons. I was mesmerized just looking at the photos of those lovely varicolored little sweet delights. I did not know how it taste like as I haven’t tried one before. All I know is that they’re completely vibrant, beautiful delectable delights and I want them. An interest of making macarons blossomed and one day I found myself procuring the ingredients day by day. I can’t help but get enraptured with the thought of making these exquisite goodies.

I bought a book from Winners (Macaroons : 30 Recipes for perfect bite-size treats) for 5 bucks and commenced into gathering all my tools and ingredients. It was my first time to bake and make these lovely sweets and I was so confident I’d make them perfectly because the directions seemed pretty unchallenging until I began to follow the formula. I tried to make the basic Vanilla French Macarons. Wheew! It’s not as simple as I thought it was. I struggled making meringue and had troubles piping the mixture into the trays lined with parchment paper. I have an excuse — it’s my first time! Then I finally settled them in the pre-heated oven. I was very excited but the excitement dropped as I watch the disaster happening in the oven. The inside of it leaked out and flooded the entire tray. My hopes were doomed. I was so disappointed with myself. I messed up. I started blaming my tools. I thought the one’s I have would suffice for the procedure. I was wrong. I told Neil about what happened and he just laughed at me. “It could be good with ice cream,” he uttered. Then I thought maybe — but then it wasn’t the macarons I fancy.

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Behold, The Macaron Disaster. Not very appetizing, isn’t it?

Glaring at the tragedy, still struck with astonishment and surprise. What did I do? I thought I followed every single detail on how to make it. I watched youtube videos on how to make french macarons. Finally, I understood something. The ignorant part of me used liquid egg whites for making meringue. First timer and did not do a research properly. I just realized I poured a liquid meringue to the sifted powder ingredients (confectioner’s sugar and ground almonds).

It was a nice and lovely Saturday when I decided a second attempt. Jade, a friend of mine came over to lend a helping hand. This time, I made sure to use fresh egg whites, whisk with electric mixer properly until it form stiff peaks. I would say I did it 85%. It’s not perfect but it looked better than the first time. I was delighted. We carefully followed the procedure step by step. And as a result…

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Tadaaa! 

Just kidding. Not mine. I wish.

ImageImageNow these are my macarons. Ok, I know they are not as pretty as it should be, I’m proud I did it better this time. Close enough to perfection. Need more practice though.

So Jade and I tried a bite and it wasn’t too bad at all. Sweet, crusty on the outside and gooey on the inside. Though some of it are kinda hollow with a huge air bubble inside the cookie, I know what to do to make it even better next time. The most important thing in making macarons is the meringue. Second to that is proper sifting and making sure there are no granulated almonds in order to have a smooth surface and makes it more appealing after baking.

As simple as they look, macarons can be a little tricky to make. Indeed, pastry chefs can spend years perfecting the art of macarons. But once the basic techniques have been mastered, it would feel a lot easier. It’s just about practice and patience.