Wednesday, July 21, 2010

KBB # 18 French Macarons

I am so happy that my registration as KBB's member KBB is approved..yipiii....
Apparently the challenge letter was also suprising like the previous before Chiffon Cake dan Savory Bake.

The challenge this time is to make French Macarons . Wow .. again playing with the ​​sensitive egg white.

Before making my own macarons, I start to browsing recipes & tips, even visit Patisseries for taste.

The recipe from KBB letter: Pink Macarons .
Source: Cupcakes, Cheesecakes, Cookies. The Australian Women Weekly. 3 egg whites
2 tbsps caster sugar
pink coloring
200 grams icing sugar
120 grams almond meal
2 tbsps icing sugar

Prepare the baking pan, spread with butter thinly; cover with baking paper.
Beat the egg whites to soft peaks, add sugar and coloring, beat until sugar dissolves.
Transfer the dough to bigger bowl. Add the icing sugar and almond meal, in two parts. Spoon dough into piping bag with a 1.5 cm plain spuit. Spray onto 36 x 4 cm baking pan circles, a distance of 2cm. Tap-pan on the tabl. Sprinkle with icing sugar, let stand for 15 minutes. Preheat fan-forced temperature oven 150C/130C. Bake macarons about 20 minutes. Allow 5 minutes, then remove from oven. Glue a piece of macarons with ganache. Sprinkle a little with icing sugar, if desired.

White Chocolate Ganache
100 grams white chocolate, cut into rough pieces
2 tbsps thickened ream / heavy cream (thick cream)

Stir in white chocolate with thick cream in a saucepan over low heat until smooth. Move to a smaller bowl. Close, chill in refrigerator until dough can be spread.

Eventough the KBB's letter a reference recipe, in my on kitchen I use a recipe from Helen Dujardin. Recipe & tips come from Macaron Tutorial PDF (Dessert Magazine)..

Basic French Meringue Macaron
3 egg whites or 100 gr weighed
50 grams granulated sugar
200 grams powdered sugar
110 grams blanched almonds, whole or ground

1. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg white to a foam, gradually add the sugar until you obtain a glossy meringue.
2. Combine the almonds and powdered sugar in a food processor and give them a quick pulse if you use already ground almonds (that you have ground yourself separately). It will break the powdered sugar lumps and combine your almonds with it evenly. If you use whole almonds, pulse throughly for a minute or so.
3. Add them to the meringue, and start to give quick strokes at first to break the mass and slow down. The whole process should not take more than 50 strokes. Test a small amount on a plate: if the top flatten on its on, you are good to go. If there is a small beak, give the batter a couple more folds.
4. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip with a batter and pipe small rounds (1.5 inch in diameter) onto parchment paper baking sheet.
5. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Let the macarons sit out for and hour to harden their shell a bit and bake for 10-12 minutes, depending on their size. Let them cool completely before filling.
6. Pipe or spoon some of your filling on one shell and sandwich with another one.

Ganace Filling:
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup bittersweet chocolate

1. In a heavy saucepan set over medium heat, bring the heavy cream to a boil.
2. Remove from the stove and add the chocolate to it. Let stand 2 minutes and then stir untill fully combined.
3. Let cool until firm enough to put in a small piping bag.

I make my own variation with making chocolate, pandan, and pink macarons. Also make my own pandan and strawberry filling. But note that make macarons with additional color should be done very carefully.
For filling, I use strawberry flavor (heavy cream + strawberry jam + white cooking chocolate) and pandan flavor (heavy cream + white cooking chocolate + pandan paste).

After 3 times trial, finally I success make my own macarons. I'm so happy. The macarons crunchy outside, chewy on the inside.
The French Macaron recipes are able to produce about 25 macaron Sandwiches.

It's seems like a lot of questions about French Macaron, then I edit this post with tips in making macarons.
1. I use the recipe from Helen Dujardin Macaron Tutorial PDF (Dessert Magazine)..

Basic French Meringue Macaron
3 egg whites or 100 gr weighed
50 grams granulated sugar (for meringue, Widya: fine caster sugar)

200 grams powdered sugar (for a mixture of almonds, Widya: icing sugar)
110 grams blanched almonds, whole or ground. (Widya: almond slice)

Method (modified by Widya):
1. Blend the almonds and icing sugar using food processor.
2. Sift the icing sugar & almond mixture 3 times. Set aside
3. Whisk the egg whites in a clean and free of fat bowl. Add caster sugar slowly. Beat until stiff but not dry.
4. Add the almond mixture into egg white mixture. Do into 2 levels. Do this by beating action in the early phase.
5. Add coloring with folding motion.
6. Insert the batter into piping bag. Make round shape in a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
7. Let stand at room until macaron dry (not wet. It may takes 1-3 hours (depending on humidity).
8. Bake in a preheated oven at 140 degrees Celsius for 13-17 minutes.
9. Let stand in baking sheet for 5 minutes. Remove from oven.
10. Store in air tight containers.

The notes & tips on macaron:
1. Macaron is humidity sensitive. I do not use almond powder from the grocery store, but make it by blend the whole almonds with icing sugar in a food processor. I use a good quality of icing sugar. I sift the almonds & sugar mixture 3 times.
2. Always remember, egg whites must be free fat and egg yolk. Use room temperature egg whites. I usually use the leftover egg white from making Lapis Surabaya cake. If kept from the refrigerator, let stand until room temperature first. Egg white storage container should also be free of fat. Bowl for whisking egg whites, should be free of fat, egg yolk. Use a medium stainless steel / glass bowl that has been washed with warm water. Same with the whisker. Drain. Avoid using a plastic container, plastic container is difficult to clean all the fat perfectly.
3. Beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Initial whisking, use low speed than add caster sugar bit by bit until the end. Then continue whisking with high speed until soft peaks egg white, stiff but not dry (cracked)
4. Mixing the egg whites & almond with folding motion. If you want to add coloring, use food coloring paste or powder. Avoid liquid coloring dye because it would add moisture.
5. Let rest macaron, better air-conditioned room. Let stand until the surface is not shiny.
6. Keep the heat in oven distribute evenly.
7. You'll be amaze to see macaroon leg growing in the first 3-4 minutes baking and the dome will get higher but remain smooth ...