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. 

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Good Morning Sunshine

good morning sunshine

Mornings are inspiring, exciting, stimulating. Though we have different attitude upon waking up, it’s always good to greet the morning with a smile rather than a cranky face. I must admit that on a weekday, I find it hard to get off my comfy bed even if I slept like a baby. I love to stay for a bit and snooze for a little while. The thought of going to work stresses me out but it’s just about getting ready. When I’m at work everything seemed normal. I used to not like mornings before but I now realized mornings are not too bad at all. I remember when I was still in my mom and dad’s care, my mother would woke me up saying, “Wake up my dear, it’s a beautiful morning.” She wanted me to join her for a cup of coffee with my dad. They would talk about their plans for the day while I enjoy dipping the sweet buns in my cup of joe. She would tell me that rising up early is good for the mind and body. Whenever I get up kinda grumpy, I always remind myself to smile and think about how beautiful the morning was, that I am still alive, that I am lucky to be still breathing, that I am loved.

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive — to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” Marcus Aurelius

Rising early in the morning gives me more time to do my turf as well. It’s always better than waking up late and staying up late. The longer the day for me, the better.

sun rays

Our attitude on a daybreak reveals our nature. Bestir ourselves to a wonderful kick-start and we’ll admit that every single day gives us unexpected supernatural occurences that brings happiness to our lives.

We are fortunate each morning that we wake up breathing and witness the fascinating charm of the rising sun, hear the birds singing, enjoy the scent of a lovely breakfast, the aroma of brewed coffee, the hot shower that streams onto our body touching our soul, the smile and the early morning hug, the touch of gentle morning breeze on our face. We might have lenghty and cloudy bygones but with just one smile and it will make the whole day better.

“May your joys be as bright as the morning, and your sorrows merely be shadows that fade in the sunlight of love. May you have enough happiness to keep you sweet, enough trials to keep you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human, enough hope to keep you.” -Irish Blessings

“Every morning when I get up, the first thing I decide is: What do I want? Misery? Blissfulness? What am I going to choose today? And it happens that I always choose blissfulness. It is my choice, it is my life.”-Abdullah

 

 

Quotations courtesy of http://quotations.about.com.

Photo credits to http://www.bubblenews.com & 1ms.net