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Help making macarons

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I've made macarons before but the results have not been consistent. Even within the same batch, some are perfect (i.e., have smooth domed top and feet) while others are wrinkled on top with no feet. The imperfect macarons taste great too but it would be nice to get both taste, texture and appearance right.

I found blogs that swear by the use of Italian meringue. I'm going to give this a try, but first, do I really need to stack together several sheets to prevent too much heat on the bottom? Is it all right to use an air-insulated cookie sheet instead? My sheet pans don't nestle snugly together so I'm not sure they'll stack up ok.

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  1. Amy:

    My mom taught me how to make macaroons years ago, and they're SO easy (freeze great, too, so make extra to have on hand for unexpected company)! She even got a request from an Italian chef & restauranteur to teach him how to make them...

    Carole's Macaroon Recipe

    1 Can Solo Almond Paste
    1 Cup Sugar
    2 Egg Whites

    Preheat oven to 325 degrees, and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

    Put almond paste in food processor with metal blade, and pulse on and off very quickly until paste begins to look crumbly.

    When crumbly, add the cup of sugar through the feeding tube. When it looks like corn meal, transfer to a bowl and slowly add the egg whites, mixing with a fork until well blended (DO NOT add the egg whites in the food processor, or the consistency won't be right).

    Use a small ice cream scoop (about the size of a walnut) and scoop the mixture onto the cookie sheets.

    Bake for 18-20 minutes until lightly browned, let cool and enjoy!

    5 Replies
    1. re: jomuk

      Jomuk, that looks like a great, simple recipe but I think the op is referring to French macarons rather than macaroons. Macaroons are very easy, macarons, not so much. If you've never tried them, you're in for a treat!

      Amy Wong, it sounds like you are doing really well with these tricky treats! Definitely use the Italian meringue. I haven't used the insulated cookie sheets so I can't help you there.

      David Lebovitz has compiled a comprehensive macaron page on his blog which is the most helpful resource I know of. Good luck!
      http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives...

      1. re: toveggiegirl

        second lebovitz. he's genius.

        1. re: hotoynoodle

          Thanks all for the help. I'm frustrated with macarons in general because of their very fickle nature. Overbeat the egg whites a tad, or leave the batter in too short a time or too long, get the oven too hot, and you don't get the correct results. The good thing about them is that the failed ones taste good too.

          I've read David Lebovitz blog before, but I didn't think about searching his blog for macarons. I can't imagine how I missed this since he lives in Paris! He has a new cookbook/memoir too but I don't have a copy.

          Thanks Jomuk for the recipe. Yeah, I'm trying to make French macarons reliably. Not doing too well though :)

          1. re: amy_wong

            love lebovitz but i've found more direction on macarons from these two blogs..
            http://www.mytartelette.com/
            http://cannelle-vanille.blogspot.com/

            one of them actually has a link to a primer she wrote for some magazine but for the life of me i can't find it!

            oh! and serious eats had a post on them awhile back...
            http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

            1. re: mybear

              The Lebovitz page is not simply his own directions. It is a compilation of useful links including the 3 you posted. Macarons are just that tricky!