I’ll Show You, Macarons (aka Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Macarons)

The 2009 October Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to us by Ami S. She chose macarons from Claudia Fleming’s The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern as the challenge recipe.

As I mentioned in my last post, my first attempt with the challenge recipe was a spectacular disaster.  Although they baked up nice and high in the oven, they promptly deflated when they cooled and didn’t develop feet at all.  Plus, I added the food coloring at an odd time, so it wasn’t evenly distributed.  Not good!

Flat Macarons

After my failure, I combed the Daring Bakers forums and found that quite a few members of the community were struggling with this month’s challenge.  Since I don’t have endless time (or almond meal, for that matter!), I decided to try a recipe from Helen of Tartelette, using tips from another Daring Baker (Audax Artifex) who is always an incredible resource for the rest of us.  Aside from using new ingredient proportions, here are some of the changes I made that I think made a difference:

  • I aged my egg whites for 3 days in the refrigerator (covered with a paper towel) the second time around.
  • I sifted my almond meal/flour before I measured it for the recipe to make sure only the finest particles were used in my batter.
  • I let the piped shells rest on my kitchen island for a half an hour before baking instead of using the “5 minutes at 200F” step in the original recipe.
  • I baked the shells at 280F (Tartelette’s suggestion) instead of 375F; I think the slower, steady rise helped them to not deflate when I took them out of the oven.
  • I used Audax’s tip for feet and used two stacked baking sheets for each batch.

They still aren’t perfect (they’re a bit peaked and I think the shells could be smoother), but they have feet, great texture, and yummy flavor.  I ended up filling them with Nutella (loosened with a bit of heavy cream).


I think the greatest benefit of this challenge is that I feel like I could handle meringue-based recipes better now than I could before; Pavlova, here I come!

14 Responses to “I’ll Show You, Macarons (aka Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Macarons)”

  1. 1 Stephanie October 27, 2009 at 9:47 pm

    Your second batch looks awesome Jenny! What flavor were they?

  2. 2 dollydoesdesserts October 27, 2009 at 10:07 pm

    The pink macarons certainly look gorgeous! I bet they tasted wonderful.

  3. 3 jfochek October 27, 2009 at 10:20 pm

    I didn’t add any flavoring, actually; I just used rose-colored gel coloring. Maybe now that I have a sliver of macaron confidence, I’ll be brave enough to use flavoring next time. 🙂

  4. 4 Lauren October 27, 2009 at 10:22 pm

    Gorgeous macarons! Love the colour & nutella filling =D.

  5. 5 sarah October 27, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    Mine peaked a bit too…but all in all a success! Great job!

  6. 6 shaz October 28, 2009 at 6:13 am

    Very pretty pink macarons! Mine kept peaking too but I poked them down (take that you macaron). Great job 🙂

  7. 7 deeba October 28, 2009 at 8:24 am

    PRETTY IN PINK, AND YAY, YOU GOT FEET!! Wel done on the challenge…wow!

  8. 8 Nadia October 28, 2009 at 11:47 am

    smooth tops owe to fine sifted almond flour. Dry it overnight if it has moisture. Then you should be good to go. Cheers,

  9. 9 Karen October 28, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    Your macarons look adorable! Mine had peaks too but that’s because I was so overparanoid about overfolding that I often underfolded. But I guess that will improve with practice 🙂 Good job!

  10. 10 laurisof October 29, 2009 at 6:59 pm

    Thay rose so much! I have to keep an eye for all those tips out there to get them that good.

  11. 11 Natalie October 30, 2009 at 6:33 am

    You did a fabulous job on your macarons!

    Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

  12. 12 Audax Artifex October 31, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    O Girl those look so good I love how you got feet and remember these are the hardest dessert to make a home superb effort and result. Yes I think Helen’s recipe is excellent. Bravo and kudos, the colour and flavour look and sounds delicious. Cheers from Audax in Australia. Thanks for the kind words.

  1. 1 Almond Torte « Sweet and Saucy Trackback on November 8, 2009 at 10:26 pm
  2. 2 Food, Glorious Food! « Sweet and Saucy Trackback on March 4, 2010 at 9:29 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

The Daring Kitchen

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 558 other followers

I want to cook…


%d bloggers like this: