Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Chocolate with Francois-Macaron Nirvana

First of all thanks to Leslie from Lethally Delicious for selecting this month's recipe in the Chocolate with Francois challenge. Macarons-Chocolate ones with creamy chocolate ganache. Check out Leslie's post and her beautiful results .  And my apologies to my fellow bakers for my late posting this month for our Chocolate with Francoise challenge.

Each time I start a recipe of macarons I get that awful feeling in my stomach-that tightening and feeling of dread.  I hate to start baking with that dread.  I'm of the belief that your mood and spirit effect the end results of what you are baking.  I want my love of baking and my passion for baking to infuse itself into the results-not the bad juju of dread !  So when I started this month's challenge I decided that I wasn't going to start baking until I put myself into macaron nirvana .   Watching the meringue go around and around  in my Kitchenaid helped me to meditate and relax and think nothing but good macaron thoughts.   I was so occupied with having a positive outlook and feeling good about this macaron experience I wasn't paying attention to the amount of batter I was making.  Hmm 3 1/2 cups of powdered sugar seemed like a lot from other recipes but I knew this was the Italian meringue method so I just chalked it up to the recipe.  As I was watching the meringue, I kept thinking hmm that's a lot of meringue.  And I  mean a full to the rim lot of meringue  whisking around in the bowl I looked at the yield on the recipe...50 macarons.  50, really, how large is Francois making his macarons ? Because by the time I finished my baking I ended up with almost 150 !!  Thank goodness we have a BBQ this week at work-guess what I'm taking for dessert ??  

I've always loved making Italian meringue-it's amazing that something so beautiful and smooth and delicious starts out as egg whites and boiling sugar.  Anyway putting myself in that macaron state of mind made a difference..my little babies have feet..So I did what all of us do when we see the feet-the hallelujah macaron dance around the oven-  Remember the song Footloose ?  Well picture me dancing around the kitchen to that tune but substituting words like Footloose,everyone has feet,everyone has feet..OK it doesn't take much to amuse me-you've learned my secret. 

Making that many macarons tired me out so I saved the ganache for tonight. I just finished filling all 150 of them and I'm macaron'd out ! Can anyone out there tell me the secret to nice smooth even macarons-I know a great deal of it is practice but seriously I sifted my almond flour and powdered sugar 3 times and still ended up with quite a few bumpy macarons. Que sera sera..they still tasted wonderful. But any advice would be greatly appreciated.


Julie said...

Beautiful! Can't wait to see your lemoncello recipe!

Peggy said...

Those are perfect and amazing. I'm so jealous! Mine looked so frumpy.

Leslie said...

What are you talking about?!? These are PERFECT! I loved the bit with you dancing around the oven because I did squeal and shot a bit when I saw feet. Sieving mine did little good until I gave the almond meal and cocoa a few turns in the Vita Mix. That eliminated the biggest bits of almond flour and my bigger bumps.

I'm so glad I'm not alone in feeling anxious when I start making macarons! Thanks for baking with me (and sorry it took me so long to stop by and see the beautiful results!)