Bay Area LIFE: Learn to make macarons with this easy recipe!

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Ohh, la la! Learn how to make a popular French treat with this recipe, courtesy of Hilary Freeman. (KGO-TV)

Ooh, la la! Learn how to make a popular French treat with this easy recipe!

Macaron Recipe:

Yields 40 cookies

7 ounces powdered sugar
4 ounces almond flour
4 ounce egg whites
5 grams powdered egg whites (not meringue powder)
3.5 ounces super fine baker's sugar

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Prepare piping bag with tip #804.

2. Combine powdered sugar and almond flour in food processor. Process until well combined and almonds appear smooth. Place in bowl and set aside.

3. In stand mixer whip egg whites until foamy (on speed #6). Slowly add in granulated sugar and powdered egg whites. Continue to whip until medium stiff peaks are formed. (At this point add food dye of choice.)

4. Place meringue in large bowl and sift 1/3 of the almond mixture on top of the meringue. Delicately but effectively fold in the almond mixture until well combined. Repeat twice using a third of the batter each time. On last addition check to make sure mixture is smooth, incorporated and free flowing.

5. Transfer to a piping bag and pipe out circles of meringue mixture 1 inch in diameter on to wax paper templates. Let stand until dry on top. (This varies depending on humidity conditions.)

6. Bake 20-25 minutes. Check at 7 minutes, rotate pan, and continue to bake until the top of the cookie does not move against the foot of the cookie and the bottom of the cookie is matte and cooked through. Cover with parchment to prevent browning.

7. When cool fill with buttercream of choice. For best results store cookies for 24 hours up to 36 hours before serving. Macarons can freeze for up to 3 months.

Oven temperature will vary. Too hot and the cookies will crack. Too cool and they might not develop a "foot". Please use oven thermometer when baking cookies. Start at 250 degrees and adjust accordingly not exceeding 300 degrees.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

12 egg whites
2 cups granulated sugar
1 lbs unsalted Butter, at 61 degrees, cubed (The better the butter the better it will taste.)

Flavor Options:

Use your imagination. Vanilla bean paste, salted caramel, chocolate, jam, lemon curd. The options are endless.

Directions:

1. Fill a large enough pot to fit the mixer bowl with water and simmer on stovetop.

2. Combine egg whites and sugar in stand mixer bowl and place pot filled with simmering water. Whisk until sugar is completely dissolved and eggs are foaming and beginning to turn white. Remove from stove.

3. Place in stand mixer with wire whip attachment and whip until egg whites have formed a stiff peak and are completely cooled. (This can take up to 15 minutes) Slowly add butter cubes until all is incorporated. Buttercream will begin to form after about 12-15 minutes.

4. Once buttercream has formed switch to paddle attachment and add flavoring of choice. Mix until smooth.

Tips:

Buttercream may appear broken or curdled after adding butter, continue whipping it will come together. (Sometimes it is best to leave the kitchen. Be patient)

If you added the butter and it was too warm and mixture appears soupy (even after mixing for 15 minutes) place entire bowl in freezer for 5 minutes and then move and continue mixing.

About Hilary Freeman:

Hilary Freeman has devoted her life to the art of baking. She loves empowering others to enjoy the same through her hands-on baking and pastry-making classes.

A student of San Francisco's Le Cordon Bleu California Culinary Academy, Hilary graduated at the top of her class.

She later went on to intern in The San Francisco Chronicle food and wine department where she worked in the test kitchen, developed recipes and wrote articles on her discoveries.

Her first trip to France solidified her passion for exquisite confections.

Now the mother of two, Hilary and her husband Daniel are always on the lookout for an opportunity to take the family to Paris.

While others might spend their time scouring the latest European fashions, Hilary patrols Parisian farmers' markets seeking new ingredients to add to her ever-growing repertoire of recipes, which includes one of her favorite sweet treats on the planet: French-style macarons (not macaroons!).

Read more about the Sugar Studio here.

Related Topics:
foodbay area lifebay areacookingrecipedesserts
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