My First Attempt at French Macarons

After this French Macaron frenzy I’ve been going through, I decided it was time to learn how to re-create this delicious confection at home. Thanks to numerous food bloggers, Martha Stewart, and Youtube, I was able to succeed in this project.

It took more than a few days and a few stores to collect everything I needed. I now understand why French Macarons are a pretty penny. The Almond flour itself was expensive. Also, the time consumption, filling concoction, and technique to get the outer cookie right.

I’d have to say, although it was my first time making them, I think I did well. My best critic, the husband, enjoyed them and raved about how bomb they were. Mind you, he even compared it to his favorite Macaron spot, Bouchon Bakery. That’s a major compliment.

Salted Caramel was the first flavor of choice I wanted to make since I first started thinking about making them. I found a few recipes online, but had to make a few tweaks to get the flavor I wanted. In the future, I just need to learn to thicken it up some more. The meringue cookie part for this gave me a hard time because I could not get it to a right shade of brown. Red + green = brown? Not for me. It looked taupe.

The next flavor I had in mind after making a batch with a pink color was something Rasberry. On a last minute tip, I changed the recipe and used fresh strawberries since I had them on hand. I thought the filling tasted great, but a little on the sweet side. Next time I’m going to lessen the sugar.

Lastly, I went with the plain and my favorite, Vanilla. I really wanted to make it Vanilla bean, but could not find any actual Vanilla beans for the life of me. Next time for sure. Vanilla extract sufficed but it lacked the natural Vanilla Bean flavor I really love. I added just a drop of yellow food coloring to the meringue batter just to give it a little oomph.

I need to perfect the cookie parts as far as shaping them into nice round matching pieces. It was so weird how some of them became oval shaped. I’m glad it turned out acceptable enough to be called a French macaron. The cookie elements were all there. Fragile, light crisped outer layer cookie, with a gooey cakey inside.

Hopefully I can be 100% confident with my Macarons as I continue to practice making them, so I can share the recipe and tweaks I used. Someday. Stay tuned. Here are some pictures.

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