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Which Macaroon cookbook to get?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hi Everyone!

I admit, I'm intrigued by the latest macaroon craze. However, with any new fad, the market is saturated with cookbooks on the subject. I have not made macaroons and quite frankly don't know where to start, so for those who have, which macaroon cookbook do you recommend (and why)?

Thanks in advance!! icon_biggrin.gif
To find "THE RECIPE LINKS ARE HERE" thread, click on "Forums", then "Recipes" and it's the first sticky. Latest updates are on (the bottom of) page 10 here: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopic-625803-135.html
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To find "THE RECIPE LINKS ARE HERE" thread, click on "Forums", then "Recipes" and it's the first sticky. Latest updates are on (the bottom of) page 10 here: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopic-625803-135.html
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post #2 of 28
Google Dorie Greenspan and Helen Dujardin for great information. These people are considered the experts. The books are all the same in baking information. That is why I like the two bakers above. They are french bakers. I'm a purist (and my relatives came from France). The books are great for ideas. If you are going to sell them, Rigg, Colonna, and Cannone have the best ideas and look the most appealing to the public. The macarons just take time to master. I made templates that I can slide under my parchment. I'm not ready to sell them. All of the books are inexpensive.

Rigg... best. If amazon doesn't have it, Anthropologie is where I got mine.
Ogita... odd ingredients
Colonna... very good
Cannone... very good
Abraham... just ordered today, but reviews are great on amazon.

By the way, Rigg's brownie book takes brownies to a new level. I don't know about the recipes, but the execution is really nice... can be use on any brownie recipe.
post #3 of 28
I have had this book for about 2 years now - and i couldn't reccomend it highly enough.
Especially if you are just starting out with making them.

Every step has a pictorial
And she gives you so many variations and what to use to make those variations.
Like so ... keep scrolling down and you will see another page.

http://blog.craftzine.com/archive/2010/02/book_review_i_love_macarons.html


This is just the first link that came uo when i Googled I LOVE MACARONS...you can get it through Amazon cheaper if you wish.

Once you have made them - there will be no turning back icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif
I get many requests to make them whether just to take to friends places or to put with an order.

Blue.
post #4 of 28
Hi,
I also have the book "I Love Macarons" and I really love it the pictures and all the ideas she gives you are amazing. I have seen many books but I still love that one also. thumbs_up.gif

Wildrose6633

Have a great day

Breila

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Have a great day

Breila

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post #5 of 28
I bought Hisako Ogitas book 'I love Macarons' but was kind of dissapointed in it. She recommends powdered sugar with no cornstarch for one and thats impossible to find in my area. A few measurements sound whacky compared to recipes I've read online also. I've been looking at other macaron books but haven't made any decisions yet as I want to make sure I get one I'm going to like this time.

Theres a good lengthy review on Amazon by Catherine Moore, about Ogitas book that pretty well explains my feelings too. Moore also had 21 replies to her review with some of them supplying helpful links. Check it out when you have time.
Respect for ourselves guides our morals; respect for others guides our manners.
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Respect for ourselves guides our morals; respect for others guides our manners.
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post #6 of 28
Not sure where you live - re not being able to get pure icing sugar - icon_confused.gif
But Corn Flour / Corn Starch is the last thing you want in your Macarons.
A true Macaron should neverhave CF/CS in it.

I have tried other recipes but found Hisako's book and recipes the best by far

Weather has a lot to do when the setting up stage is happening -
Due to the high humidity over here sometimes it can take a good hour and a half before mine are touch dry.


Bluehue
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Boy some great info here!! I've been all over the internet tonight thanks to y'all! icon_biggrin.gif As for the powdered sugar without cornstarch -- that's not available in the United States where I am (that I've ever heard of anyway.) Is there a substitute or some other way to achieve the same result?
To find "THE RECIPE LINKS ARE HERE" thread, click on "Forums", then "Recipes" and it's the first sticky. Latest updates are on (the bottom of) page 10 here: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopic-625803-135.html
Reply
To find "THE RECIPE LINKS ARE HERE" thread, click on "Forums", then "Recipes" and it's the first sticky. Latest updates are on (the bottom of) page 10 here: http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopic-625803-135.html
Reply
post #8 of 28
Can anyone suggest a good recipe for macaroons & fillings?
post #9 of 28
Gesine Bullock-Prado has a new book out called Sugar Baby. The book is awesome and there is also a website to go with it for tutorials.

Also, I've made this recipe as a first timer and had no problems (not from Prado's book).

I do not have a food processor. I bought Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour-raw almonds already ground up, but I sifted the bag a couple of times and instead of forcing the bigger pieces through to become smaller, I discarded them. If you have a food processor, I would re-grind the whole amount of almonds called for with the powdered sugar. I also used regular powdered sugar from the grocery store which probably has cornstarch in it. I have made these four times (4 batches), but all in separate batches-not combining ingredients to make more than once batch at a time.

I've filled them with basic chocolate ganache, swiss meringue butter cream and played around with adding caramel to the buttercream, and lemon curd to the buttercream.

You'll need:
1. Strainer
2. Parchment paper
3. Almonds
4. Powdered sugar
5. Granulated sugar
6. Egg whites
7. Bowls
8. Round tip
9. Piping bag
10. Spatula
11. Stand or hand mixer

Basic recipe for French meringue macarons
Makes 35-40 whole macarons

Ingredients:
-100 gr (1 1/8 cup) ground almonds (make sure to grind more than 100 grams/1 1/8 cup)
-100-110 gr (3/8 cup) egg whites (about 3 egg whites), aged 1 day at room temperature covered with clingfilm
-200 gr (1 1/2 cup) powdered sugar
-4 tablespoons (about 45 gr) granulated sugar

Grind the almonds in a food processor. Sift to get rid of any large pieces (read visible) or lumps.

Mix the powdered sugar together with the ground almonds in a food processor.
In a large bowl, whip the egg whites with a hand- or stand mixer. As the egg whites start foaming, add the sugar one tablespoon at a time and continue whipping until the mixture is glossy and stiff. You should be able to hold the bowl upside down without the meringue sliding out!

Fold the dry mixture into the meringue using a spatula. Add food coloring if desired and fold until fully mixed. The mixture should flow like a ribbon when you hold up the spatula. Dont overmix! If you want to test if the batter has good consistency, just dollop some batter on a piece of parchment paper. If the dollop slowly flattens, youre good to go! If not, just keep folding.

I usually find that a slightly under-mixed batter is better than an over-mixed.
If you want to color your macarons, its generally better to use powdered food coloring, or pastes that are low in liquid.
If you, like me, find it difficult to fill a pastry bag with only two hands, put your piping bag in a tall glass or jar.

Fill your piping bag and pipe the macarons onto baking sheets, I usually end up with two sheets. Remember that the shells will flatten once youve piped, so dont make them too big. About 2,5-3 cm (1 inch) is enough.
Let them set for 60 minutes to form a dry skin.

Heat the oven to 150° C (300 degrees F). Bake for 10-12 minutes in the middle of the oven. Keep a close eye on them the last couple of minutes as they brown easily. You can test if they are done by touching the tip of a macaron, if it wobbles they are not done.
Let the shells cool completely before removing them from the baking sheets. If you have trouble removing them from the paper, put them back in the oven for a couple of minutes. Pipe your filling of choice on a shell and sandwich together with another shell.

Flavors
There is an endless list of flavors you can use for macarons. The best way to flavor the shells is to use dry flavorings, such as dried, ground zest from lime, lemon or orange. You can replace half of the ground almonds with ground pistachios or any other type of nut. If you want to make chocolate shells, just replace 15 grams of the powdered sugar with cocoa powder (that means 185 gr powdered sugar + 15 gr cocoa powder). Chocolate macarons usually need to be baked for a few minutes more, about 14-15 minutes. Dont worry if the shells seem too hard and crunchy, after a day or two in the refrigerator (with filling) they will be perfect! Ground instant coffee is also a perfect way to add flavor to your shells, just add 1-2 tablespoons to the dry mixture depending on how strong you want the coffee flavor to be.
The shells can also be sprinkled with, for example, chopped pistachios or a pinch of sea salt to add even more flavor. Just remember to do this right after youve piped the shells on the baking sheet, before they form a dry skin.

Fillings
You can use any type of filling you like, my favorites are ganaches and buttercreams, but you can also use jams and curds if you want to. If the filling contains a lot of liquid I recommend eating them the same day. If not, keeping them a day or two (in a box with an air-tight lid of course) in the regrigerator will only make them taste better! It's best to sandwich the macarons and leave them in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

Filling suggestions:

Dark chocolate ganache

-150 gr (1 3/8 cup) chopped dark chocolate
-150 ml (5/8 cup) heavy cream
Put the chocolate in a heat proof bowl. In a saucepan, bring the cream to a boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Let stand for a minute and then stir until combined. Let cool until firm enough to pipe.

Vanilla swiss meringue buttercream

-2 large egg whites
-90 gr (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
-110 gr (1/2 cup) softened butter (cut in pieces)
-1 tsp vanilla extract or seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean

Whisk together egg whites and sugar in a heat-proof bowl. Put the bowl in a double-boiler with simmering water. Keep whisking until the mixture reaches 65 degrees C (150 degrees F). Remove from heat. Start whipping the mixture with a hand mixer or in a stand mixer until it is white and fluffy, like meringue. Whip until cool, this can take up to 10 minutes. Add the butter slowly, piece by piece and keep whipping for another 3 minutes. If the mixture looks soupy and grainy, dont give up! Just keep whipping and itll come together. Add the vanilla or any other type of flavoring and whip until fully combined.

Store filled macarons in an air tight box in the refrigerator for 5-6 days. It is also possible to freeze them once theyre filled.
post #10 of 28
You definitely don't want to use corn starch in macarons. It can cause them to crack, and you don't want a cracked macaron! thumbsdown.gif They are probably the most temperamental thing I bake - over-beat and they won't set up, under-beat and they will crack; if your kitchen is too hot, they won't dry; cooking times can vary with each batch. And they can be expensive to make...almond flour is $$$ (although you CAN make your own).

If you try them, I suggest separating your eggs at least 3 days before you plan to make the macarons. The whites will whip up better by doing this. Oh, and definitely measure your ingredients by WEIGHT rather than volume! I also double up my baking sheets to prevent the macarons from burning. That might not be necessary, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.
post #11 of 28
Quote:
Quote:

As for the powdered sugar without cornstarch -- that's not available in the United States where I am (that I've ever heard of anyway.) Is there a substitute or some other way to achieve the same result?



If you have a good food processor, you could probably make your own powdered sugar using regular sugar - I've never tried this (we have the pure stuff here), but I do make my own almond flour using almond meal this way and it works fine. I then pass it through a fine sieve to make sure there's no lumpy bits. If you don't sieve, your macarons won't be smooth, glossy perfection, but will probably still taste good.

I've read a few blogs by American bakers who use powdered sugar with corn starch and seem to get good results.

What to fill them with? Chocolate ganache (flavoured or as is), white chocolate ganache (flavoured or as is), buttercream (flavoured) or jam/preserves are commonly used. My favourite filling is salted caramel. These are To. Die. For. If you google salted caramel macarons you'll find a recipe.

Regards (and happy macaron-ing),
Cris.
post #12 of 28
For those of you having trouble finding PURE icing sugar in the States....

I just went and Googled where you could buy it - sadly none of the Australian on line shops seem to stock it ..........(sorry)

HOWEVER...i did find this which might help you in your search...

If you live in an area with a large Jewish population, you might be able to find powdered sugar without corn starch in a Kosher market, or in the Kosher for Passover section of the market, in the weeks preceding Passover (early spring).

Hope that might help some of you.


Bluehue icon_smile.gif
post #13 of 28
Our health food store in rinky dink town, WV had powdered sugar without cornstarch right on the shelf. Check around. If we have it, everyone should have it. If anyone needs the brand, I will get it. Most health food stores will order it... no shipping.

I thought I Love Macarons was good too until I saw the other books and studied Greenspan and Dujardin. Of all of the new books out, this is my least favorite, but it was one of the first.
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

Our health food store in rinky dink town, WV had powdered sugar without cornstarch right on the shelf. Check around. If we have it, everyone should have it. If anyone needs the brand, I will get it. Most health food stores will order it... no shipping.

I thought I Love Macarons was good too until I saw the other books and studied Greenspan and Dujardin. Of all of the new books out, this is my least favorite,



but it was one of the first.
There have been many books published about Macarons - this was hardly one of the first......... icon_confused.gif
Perhaps seeing as they have only become fashionable in the States in the last 2 years - thats the reason why many have never heard of the other books from years and years ago.

My grandmother always had them sitting on her dinning room table for Afternoon Tea every Sunday... just an arms length from the Scones jam and cream.


I have cookbooks from over 30+ years ago relating to just Macarons.

Bluehue.
.




post #15 of 28
They have obviously been around. I studied them and made them when I was in the French National Honor Society in the 70's. French cooking is part of my heritage and my daughters have carried on the tradition. I was referring to the new group of books on the market which is what the OP is asking. If you will notice, I referred to the two french chefs as a good source of information.
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