bake like a french

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

never thought that baking macarons can be very technical.

last year i went to a macarons class and was so overwhelming once i tasted the scrumptious and pretty looking macarons after the class finished. up until that time, the only macarons that i usually bought was from whisk empire as i rarely buy online. even aaqilah and natalia love macarons from whisk. i once bought from a kiosk in klcc and sadly, they're quite disappointing. i've tried once from a kiosk in metrojaya mid valley, and they're also not really satisfying although looked promising. so i thought, why it's such a big hit?

since i'm not a patissier and have not much experience with macarons, my opinions are solely based on my personal taste and what i think is good. to me, a perfect macarons should have this crispiness on a thin layer of skin but won't easily break when you have a bite. the softness inside the shell holds the sandwiched macarons but it's not soggy. surprisingly, a chocolate lover like myself prefers salted caramel filling macarons over chocolate ganache, but i think chocolate praline filling is one of the best i've ever tasted.

my first attempt with macarons was like a week or two after the class. based on my performance in the class, i was confident that it could work. nah, i was wrong and demotivated just after 1/3 of the process. my meringue wasn't consistent as it should have been, and as i suspected, most of them were flat and took so long to cook. i guessed i was clueless at how long it takes time to cook perfectly and the experiment was quite a disaster. but what i've started must be completed not matter what was the end result, hence sandwiched the shells with ganache fillings, and put them neatly in container. my spirit was lifted a bit as my sister told me it tasted quite good contrary to the looks.

so i had another go last 2 weeks. i prepared the raspberry jam filling the night before and went quite smooth. i thought ok, this is a good indication. the process went smoother, the meringue was quite a success with the extra help from sister, the part-time baker. even when i piped the macarons, they all looked good and i was quite confident that finally i've started to conquer my fear over previous attempt.

wait until they're in the oven when i've started seeing something went wrong. macarons are not like cakes so basically they're not supposed to rise during baking, that's what i thought to myself. pray hard, i really hoped that at least i could get enough for cake decoration.

oh my god, look at these. couldn't say that they're a failure but it's more to something that wasn't work out as expected. however, they're tasted as good as the cute ones, see the following ;)

what went wrong during the first round was basically due to my less experience with macarons. although i did performed well during the class, never forget that it was conducted by a very experienced chef and we were taught in the heart of a fine dining restaurant. the atmosphere, equipment, everything was in a right place.

hence, i had better prepared myself as i knew what should and should not do. i managed better in a more timely manner, and technical aspects were improved too. so why did most of macarons become fluffy was quizzical to me, but i think every techniques applied must be precise. i'll let you know once i have become better next time.

so, back to the test kitchen to achieve perfection!

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