Tips: Baking Macarons

If you’ve all been following me on Instagram or Facebook, you’ll know that I’ve been on a macaron baking spree in the past couple of weeks. I’ve probably baked about 300-400 macarons in total for various reasons (house warming, orders, gifts etc) so I can say, I am quite an expert when it comes to using MY home oven to bake my recipe of the macarons, so I thought it’d be a good idea to share some tips that I found from baking such large batches with 99% success rate.

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French or Italian?:

Trust me when I say, EVERYONE uses the Italian Meringue. It is more stable for personal and commercial production.

Tant Pour Tant: Half/Half of almond powder and icing sugar

I find that using a food processor and then sieving it gives you the best results. Smooth macaron shells with minimal bumps from lumps. However, if you don’t have a food processor (which I didn’t even use myself until recently), sieving the mixture once or twice also helps.

Colouring

There are a few types of food colouring out there. Firstly, there is oil based and water based colours. For macarons, please steer clear of the water based colouring as you’ll require more of it, and subsequently dilute the macaron mixture and it’ll affect the end results.

Oil based food colouring: gel and powder. I use both of these depending on the needs and requests of my clients. Again, although these colours are more concentrated, do use sparingly also as the oil content in these colours may alter the composition of the shell mixture and cause the middle of the shell to be oily and will appear to have a dark patch.

Freeze Dried Fruit Powders: Personally, when I am baking for my friends or family, I prefer to go au naturel in colouring, and sprinkle a generous amount of freeze dried fruit powder matching the filling. This is not only healthier, it is also prettier.

Baking Tools

Invest in a good, flat, aluminium tray as it will be best for delicate biscuits such as the macarons. Trays like this will not bend in the oven, thus ensuring perfect macarons.

I have baked with both Baking Paper and Silpat Mats before and I find that Silpat Mats are 100% better for delicate pastries like the macarons.

Heat circulation

It may be tempting for you to pipe as many macaron shells as possible on each tray. DON’T. This will affect the heat circulation on the tray and WILL affect the final results – i.e. some will not cook properly. So just be patient..

Baking temperature

I will not give away my recipe for obvious reasons  but my baking temperature that has worked well with my family oven is: 150c for 7 minutes, 140c for 10 minutes and 100c for 2 minutes.

This is just what works for me and my current oven, no guarantees that it’ll work in a different oven and with a different recipe.

Cooling

Before you start peeling the shells off your baking paper or Silpat mat, make sure to cool it completely.

 

Earl grey macarons

Earl grey macarons

I hope you found these tips useful! Feel free to leave a comment sharing your tips too! 🙂

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