Tuesday, October 27, 2009

MACARONS - THE DARING BAKERS

The end of the month is once again on our doorstep and time has come for all of us lovers of flour, eggs and sugar to post our Daring Bakers latest creations to date...

Can you believe that this is the 25th consecutive challenge that I complete as A Daring Baker (2 years and one month as a member)? Incredible! Sometimes, I amaze myself with my voluntarism and capacity to never call it a day even if I'd love to do so. It is a real miracle that such a pessimistic fraidy-cat like me like me is able to gather enough strenghth in order not to throw the towel when my baking skills are being put to the test. I am able to prove that I can surpass myself, jump over my shadow and confront my fears with much perseverance and determination...

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

Some of you might remember that in December 2008, I had made my very first "Macarons" with my friend Jessica from Maryland (USA) and wrote about how that French speciality always filled me with apprehension and how scared I was at the idea of trying to compare with people who mastered the art of making "Macarons" to the perfection, yet how, at the end, we found them not as daunting as we imagined...

Well, to tell you the truth, this time around, I wasn't as relaxed as I wished to be considering the fact that it would not be my very first time with that speciality. Unfortunately I was as scared of getting started as if it had been when I made my inaugural batch of "Macarons" batch. What made me uncomfortable was the fact that "Macarons" are notoriously tricky to make and testing an unknown recipe made me even feel more edgier. Silly girl! Sometimes I can be really stupid, but nevermind.

Anyway, no matter how uneasy I felt about going through the whole process of making "Macarons" again, I promised myself that they were going to look better than the first time around and that I would forever put an end to my "Macarons" angst. The result was surprinsingly very exciting and with my fears put aside, I instantly understood why people can't stop carrying on about those cute little sugar gems-

As we were free to use the flavorings of our choice for our "Macarons", I decided to add some vanilla sugar to the delightfully almond-tasting macaron shells and make an "Orange, Cinnamon & Cubeb Pepper Buttercream" as filling. Heavenly!

Apart from having the most luscious aroma, my "Macarons" also had the most perfect texture I had ever come across. They weren't shallow, were crisp on t
he outside and chewy on the inside. A macaron-lover's dream!

I wish to thank Amy S. at "Baking Without Fear" (USA) for choosing this awesome recipe! I really enjoyed making "Macarons" and was so happy to get a little training in order to perfect my skills.

~ Vanilla Macarons With Orange, Cinnamon & Cubeb Pepper Buttercream ~ Recipe taken from Claudia Fleming’s "The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern".

Macaron Shells

Yields 10 dozen macarons

Preparation time:
Not taking into account the amount of time it takes for you to bring your egg whites to room temperature, the whole baking process, including making the batter, piping and baking will probably take you about an hour to an hour and a half.

Actual baking time:
17-20 minutes in total.

Equipment required:
• Electric mixer, preferably a stand mixer with a whisk attachment
• Rubber spatula
• Baking sheets
• Parchment paper or nonstick liners
• Pastry bag (can be disposable)
• Plain half-inch pastry bag tip
• Sifter or sieve
• If you don’t have a pastry bag and/or tips, you can use a Ziploc bag with the corner snipped off
• Oven
• Cooling rack
• Thin-bladed spatula for removing the macaroons from the baking sheets
• Food processor or nut grinder, if grinding your own nuts (ouch!)

Ingredients:
225g (2 1/4 Cups) Confectioners’/Icing sugar

190g (2 Cups) Almond flour
25g (2Tbs) Granulated sugar
5 Egg whites, at room temperature

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 200°F (93°C). Combine the confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a medium bowl. If grinding your own nuts, combine nuts and a cup of confectioners’ sugar in the bowl of a food processor and grind until nuts are very fine and powdery.
2. Beat the egg whites in the clean dry bowl of a stand mixer until they hold soft peaks. Slowly add the granulated sugar and beat until the mixture holds stiff peaks.

3. Sift a third of the almond flour mixture into the meringue and fold gently to combine. If you are planning on adding zest or other flavorings to the batter, now is the time. Sift in the remaining almond flour in two batches. Be gentle! Don’t overfold, but fully incorporate your ingredients.
4. Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a plain half-inch tip (Ateco #806). You can also use a Ziploc bag with a corner cut off. It’s easiest to fill your bag if you stand it up in a tall glass and fold the top down before spooning in the batter.
5. Pipe one-inch-sized (2.5 cm) mounds of batter onto baking sheets lined with nonstick liners (or parchment paper).
6. Let the macaron rest for 30-60 minutes.
7. Bake the macaron for 17-20 minutes at 150° C (302° F)

8. Cool on a rack before filling.

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Orange, Cinnamon & Cubeb Pepper Buttercream Filling

Makes about 1 cup buttercream.

Ingredients:

120g (1 stick) Unsalted butter, at room temperature

(1 Cup) Confectioners'/icing sugar
1/2 Tsp Orange essence
1/2 Tsp Ground cinnamon
1/4 Tsp Freshly ground cubeb pepper

Method:
1. Cream the butter until pale and smooth.
2. Add the sugar and spices. Incorporate.
3. Beat the mixture until light and fluffy.
4. Fill the macarons.


Remarks:

This buttercream melts, so keep your macarons in the fridge.

The macarons will be better the next day, so don't eat them straight away!

Additional information:

David Lebovitz breaks it down.

More macaroon 411.
Get inspired by our own Tartlette!
Go behind the scenes of Paulette.
Watch a pro pipe macaroons.
Beating egg whites.

***************

Etant donné la longueur du texte original, je n'ai malheureusement pas pu faire une traduction française de ce billet et je m'en excuse auprès de tous mes amis lecteur s et blogueurs francophones!

C'est pourquoi je vous suggère de vous rendre sur les blogs mentionnés ci-dessous. Vous y trouverez cette recette en version française.

Chez Jasmine de "Jasmine Cuisine" (Canada)
Chez Isa de "Les Gourmandises d'Isa" (Canada)

123 comments:

  1. So pretty! Interesting flavor combination as well. I like that the last photo says "Bite Me!" So cheeky!

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  2. Love the flavour combo of your macarons. Lovely pictures as always. Very nicely done!!

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  3. Wow! That is one stunning macaron. Beautiful work. What is kubeb pepper exactly? I have never heard of it.

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  4. Lovely coloring and great flavor choice! Congrats on a great 25th challenge!!

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  5. Stunning! Love your choice of filling so different!

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  6. Bonjours Rosa, toujour delicious chez toi..il est magnifique!
    Très bonne journé****

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  7. Looks great and I love the sound of your flavouring! Well done

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  8. Wow, you're so talented and I admire your perseverence in never missing a challenge! I tried this before I went to Italy and things didn't work out at all, then was feeling too ill to remake them! Your macaroons are truly amazing and I just adore the filling.

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  9. Rosa your brilliant and this recipe didn't vex you like like it did for others. Well done.

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  10. Beautiful macarons and what an exquisite filling!

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  11. How gorgeous does yours look and I love those flavours! I failed quite miserably for this batch and didn't have time to make another, but o well... next time better. But yours look absolutely perfect!

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  12. Rosa! Great job on the macaron. Orange, cinnamon and pepper? Genius! You would give Pierre Herme a run for his money.

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  13. dont't need translation, need to test ;)
    Rosa, tu es une magicienne, la garniture me plait autant que les coques

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  14. congrats on completing the 2 years rosa and what a way to celebrate with elegant macarons!

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  15. Beautiful Rosa, such a delicate colour, really really pretty!

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  16. Un vrai poème ces parfums de macarons, divines inspirations!

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  17. Looks delish, Rosa. I love the photos you take.

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  18. Felicitations ! Ils sont superbes !

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  19. How wonderful Rosa ! I'll have to try them again !!

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  20. beautiful macarons darling! and flip, the buttercream sounds phenomenal. great flavours. x

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  21. They look beautiful! Love your choice for filling and am happy to hear the recipe went so smoothly. What size eggs did you use? (I used large ones, and the recipe just didn't want to work for me).

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  22. Rosa, you always make me laugh! I am drawn into your wonderful storytelling, telling how you approach the challenge, how you are nervous and then jump right in. And you always lead me to believe that a mediocre result will follow, only to be amazed at the beauty of your pastry making! As always! I do always expect perfection from you and what stunning macarons you have given us! Wonderful, intriguing flavors!

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  23. Your macaron looks so delicate and ethereal. Love it!

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  24. So beautiful Rosa. I love the buttercream flavouring you used.

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  25. a gem indeed rosa! Your macaron looks so pretty! and I'm loving that filling :-)And yes, i completed my two years in July, was surprised too :-)

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  26. I really like how this challenge has helped you to realize that you are a lot more persistent than you thought! I enjoy that about the DB too. :)

    Your macarons look absolutely perfect, and that filling sounds divine. Enjoy!

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  27. .. je suis toujours franchement impressionné devant ces tits macarons..les tiens sont magnifiques ma belle Rosa;)

    ~nancy xx

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  28. now dont those macarons look just lovely! The perfect kiss.. and the filling is great too!

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  29. Tu es la Meilleure Rosa !!! :-)

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  30. très réussis bravo, je t'en piquerai bien un!
    bisous

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  31. Your macaron looks so pretty and such interesting flavours as well. I don't think I've every come across one such as this.

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  32. Sigh... what a great success yours look to be! Mine were totally hopeless. I'm not even sure I am going to bother to post them.

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  33. Rosa
    tu es devenue la Madonne des macarons !
    bravo
    Ps j'adore ta musique qui passe sur le blog
    Pierre

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  34. Happy 25th DB post Rosa! What a wonderful flavour combo and lovely photos as usual.

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  35. your macarons are soooo cute!
    it is definetly irresistable :)
    and I love the flavors' combination-
    it looks delishhh
    fantastic job!
    Inbal

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  36. Just perfect! One of these days I may muster the courage to try making them.

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  37. My God, what can I say.
    Everything PERFECT and BEAUTIFUL.
    Fantastic work xxxxx

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  38. absolutely gorgeous!! i'm totally smitten :-)

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  39. They are little gems, and yours look perfect! Your buttercream sounds delicious too.

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  40. So pretty and delicious! I'm intrigued by cubeb pepper, a new one for me.

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  41. Absolutely yummy,delicious etc, nice pictures as well! I love your puctures Rosa! :) Gloria

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  42. I adore your divine and delicious looking Macaroon.

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  43. Est-ce qu'il y a quelque chose que tu ne sais pas faire?

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  44. ou achetes-tu la poudre d'ammande aussi fine? Si c'est a Geneve, j'aimerias l'adresse exacte ?

    Merci d'avance

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  45. Ils sont très beaux !!!!
    Je dois être la seule sur la blogo à les rater à chaque fois, snif !
    Bisous, Doria

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  46. Congrat's on your 25th challenge, love you chosen flavors :)

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  47. Macarons are considered to be one of the biggest challege, I have not dared to try yet. Yours looks beautiful !

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  48. Je suis toujours admirative. Ils sont superbes ces Macarons.

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  49. Oh Rosa, they are preciously beautiful & irresistible. Awesome good macarons....and great flavour combination! wow!!

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  50. this makes me wish i had hopped aboard the macaron train many moons ago! i'm intrigued by this cubeb pepper, and madly impressed by your work. :)

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  51. I am so happy that you had complete success with this recipe, they came our perfect! I love your flavor combination, that is my favorite part of making these treats, one can be so creative and in your case, one cannot go wrong with vanilla and orange with a touch of spice!

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  52. wouahhhh ils sont à croquer tes macarons et quels super parfums tu as choisis !!!

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  53. Rosa - your macarons and your photography are both beautiful. Bravo!

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  54. Oh, I was waiting for plum flavored ones ;> I love the addition of the pepper in the buttercream.

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  55. unglaublich, Du bäckst wie ein Profi bei Sprüngli.

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  56. Rosa you are such an expert on macaroons, I envy you. I remember you posted macaroons again in the past I think chocolate but this filling sounds delicious.

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  57. they look soo pretty!! great job rosa!1
    cheers!!

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  58. une nouvelle merveilleuse gourmandise, ils sont superbes ces macarons , les photos aussi, bravo !!
    J'adore leur couleur et leur parfum est très original, comme j'aurais aimé y gouter !!

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  59. Wow! Those are irresistible! Way to go! I'm impressed and inspired to try again!

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  60. I have those same fears. These look excellent. I might be inspired!

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  61. WOW, YOU NEVER MISSED THE CHALLENGE, THAT IS REALLY IMPRESSIVE!

    Anyway, your macaron look fabulous.

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  62. I have to say, Rosa, you are a fabulous baker! All your baked goods look perfect!

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  63. Oh my do these look delicious! And what were you afraid of? ;-)

    I have never made macarons. I have seen these on so many blogs but thought of trying them.

    The buttercream sounds extra special but I wouldn't know where to find Cubeb pepper in Germany.

    BTW, love your photography too!

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  64. Wonderful Rosa. Lovely flavours. Thank you for the link to beating egg whites. Very useful.

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  65. What a beautiful macarons Rosa!
    This challenge is too hard for my sweet tooth, I want all of them.

    This is the first one I see today that doesn’t have chocolate and looks absolutely tempting too :)

    All the best,
    Gera

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  66. Wish I could bite in to one these perfect macaroons,the filling sounds so yum :D

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  67. They turned out perfectly Rosa!

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  68. Your macarons look perfect, Rosa! Like pretty little clouds of sweetness. Such a beautiful job!

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  69. Rosa, I think this is your best yet. Those flavour combinations are out of this world. Orange, Cinnamon and Cubeb Pepper? How creative.

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  70. Beautiful effort and that flavour combination is to die for. Lovely colour also. Well done. Cheers from Audax in Australia.

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  71. Would it be too much for me to ask you to send me a batch of these? hehe!

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  72. Ils sont superbes :)

    Bonne semaine ma belle Rosa!!xxx

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  73. Eh ben! Bravo! J'ai bien aimé lire le texte! moi aussi, j'ai toujours eu peur de faire des macarons. Mais ta recette magnifique me donne le courage nécessaire pour les faire un jour!

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  74. Wow, congratulations for being the Senior Daring Baker for 25 months! :-) I might pamper myself with something nice if I pass 1 year being a DB!

    Anyway, your macarons look great - perfect shape and balance!

    Regards
    Kris

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  75. Your macarons are perfection itself! Glad you got past your initial fear...they are adorable.

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  76. Perfect macarons are the stuff of dreams. Congrats to you for overcoming your fears and making something so spectacular.

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  77. So BEAUTIFUL!! I love the color--they look like they will just melt in your mouth. WOW--25 challenges, that deserves an award. :)

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  78. I purchased almond flour awhile back and have been waiting for the perfect recipe to use it in.
    The macarons looks delicious & so perfect ... I'll try it soon :)
    Love the last photo.... so cute :D

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  79. Very Nice, i looooove them !!

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  80. Lovely! They look so ethereal and light.

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  81. delicious, i have no words, the photos....simply stunning, well done! cheers from london

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  82. Congratulations on your 25th challenge! Looks like you've mastered the macaron, and love the spicy buttercream filling.

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  83. Des macarons bien réussis et pourtant avec ces gâteaux, ce n'est jamais gagné d'avance.
    BRAVO!

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  84. Quel beau travail, tes macarons sont magnifiques.

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  85. Ils sont magnifiques et très gourmands, bravo !

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  86. Great pictures and a delicious sounding filling. Looks like you had better luck with this recipe then most.

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  87. These sound dreamy! Love the flavours you used - the macs look fantastic!

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  88. I'm sad I missed this challenge. I totally forgot about it!!
    Your little macaroons look oh so sweet and delicous! Great job!

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  89. They have the feet!! stunning macarons with as stunning filling.

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  90. Rosa, what a nice and cute macaron...love the flavors that you have in it...such an interesting and creative combination! Look so delicate...if only I could have a small bite of it :-)

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  91. Rosa, tes photos sont d'un grand raffinement. Encore une fois c'est de l'art. Bon je prends aussi le macaron car je suis macaron addict. Bises. Leila.

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  92. Félicitations, tes macarons sont magnifiques! Et ta garniture semble absolument délicieuse, j'admire ta créativité. Lovely pictures as always!

    Bonne journée!
    Isabelle

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  93. Wow, Rosa! Those look absolutely perfect! I love the flavor combination.

    Honestly I am surprised to hear that you have "macaroon angst", all your pastries and confections always look bakery shop perfect, I would have never guessed!

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  94. ils sont trés trés beaux !bravo

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  95. They are just perfect! Love your flavor combination, it sounds delicious. Beautiful feet!!

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  96. Really? YOU were worried about making these? I'm surprised as you make so many wonderful and challenging recipes.

    Great job!
    ~ingrid

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  97. Ils sont tout simplement parfaits!!
    Bises

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  98. You did a fabulous job on your macarons! I love your buttercream flavor...yummy!

    Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

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  99. Oh! Rosa... those are so nice, so delicate and harmonious... just like I imagine you to be!
    Peut-être est-il vrai qu'on cuisine à notre image?

    Superbe défi!

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  100. Not only are your vanilla macs stunning, but you had me at 'Orange, Cinnamon & Cubeb Pepper Buttercream' OH MY GOD, that sounds amazing, Rosa! You totally rock and I'm adding yet another 'Rosa bookmark' to my Rosa bookmarks! :)

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  101. un petit coucou pour te souhaiter une bonne journée!
    bisous

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  102. Your macarons look so good! I had to skip this month's challenge.

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  103. Waouhhhh! Une vraie réussite! Les miens étaient loin d'être si beaux.
    Bises

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  104. I can't get over how light looking these are. Beautifiul.

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  105. Precious, yes. But I'll bet they tasted even better than they looked.

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  106. Your macaron looks just perfect, love the combination of flavours you used!

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  107. Looks perfect and the flavours sound amazing!

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  108. Rosa, your macarons are a work of art!! I just joined Daring Bakers, and haven't yet baked my first challenge item, which is due to be posted tomorrow! I am feeling like a 'fraidy-cat about how it will turn out. Your perseverance gives me inspiration to just barrel ahead and get it cone. Thanks Rosa!

    :) Jane

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