October's Daring Bakers' Challenge is hosted by Baking Without Fear.
Macaroons usually refers to a cookie made of coconut in the United States and a cookie made of ground almond, or almond paste in the Europe (called the French-styled Macarons).
Oooh..... I've been looking forward to this day - the blogging, the baking, the eating and the picture-taking!
(promise to keep this secret for me, yeah? i actually spent 10minutes thinking of what title to write for this post!! yes. i'm soooo excited - its my very first daring baker challenge!)
In fact, I also intended to make the macarons for graduation! (that is on 15 October, which is just one day after I baked them) Graduation's considered one of the most important event for secondary 4s, so I was quite worried that things don't turn out well (but still looking foward!!)
Anyway I used the recipe selected by our October host from Claudia Fleming’s The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern.
Yeah, these're the very cute but feetless macarons I brought for graduation in the end! All sandwiched with chocolate ganache and I was really glad that my classmates enjoyed it :)
Uh, and you know, this sounds extremely unbelievable, I actually piped and baked more than 500 macarons in 8 parts, taking almost 6 hours! I'm quite impressed with my patience that day though, I even made 6 different kinds of macarons from 2 batches of macaron batter! The whole process took up a whole day but it was extremely rewarding. (Although I'd failed terrible to bake macarons with feets, I was still very very happy to see my macarons standing firm after being piped!)
So here are the 'six' variations of macarons I made:
1) cocoa topped w dessicated coconut
My mum likes this! She loves coconut, and adding some dessicated coconut does the job because apparently, she does not appreciate macarons. It is simply too sweet for her liking =\
2) cocoa mixed with some very strong coffee bean bits
lucky me, I spotted this glass bottle of really rich-smelling coffee beans that didn't look like coffee beans in the kitchen! Anyway they were incredibly cute and I can't emphasize on this more. HAHA.. So, just nice that I could put them to good use this time :D
After they were baked! :)
3) cocoa with the flavourful cinnamon
lightly dusted with cocoa powder...
and nicely browned! :D (this batter contains 1/8 tsp cinnamon) In fact the cinnamon macarons were my favourite! I really like the taste and smell of it infused in the macarons.
Having fun filling them into my piping bag. Yes it is a very brilliant idea to do it with a tall mug, suggested by DB October host, Ami of Baking Without Fear =)
This was how they looked like when I took them out of the oven to raise the temperature (as indicated by the recipe's instructions)
I love this sooo princess-colour! :D
I thought they really resembles the 'Tiffany&Co' blue. (laughs!!)
and looking like this when I took 'em out to raise the temperature of the oven :)
The first half were good, until the coloured ones .... I encountered a very serious problem - when i turned the temperature up and return the macarons into the ready oven, the macarons start to flatten!! And I was further discouraged by the fact that I had difficulties peeling the macarons from the baking sheet! (only the coloured macarons gave me this problem)
My box of FEETLESS macarons for graduation! :D (okay I promise to work on their feets)
Today marks the second day of my O'levels (this post is pre-written!) but I'll still be verryyy good and report to the Daring Bakers' forum to check out next month's challenge! O'levels ending one 13 Nov (I'll be diligently counting down to that day =P) so, dolly please exercise a little self control and stop baking meanwhile!
Confectioners’ sugar: 225 g
Almond flour / ground almond: 190 g
Granulated sugar: 2 tablespoons
Egg whites: 5 (Have at room temperature, preferably aged for 3days)
Preheat the oven to 200°F (93°C).
Grind the confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a food processor until nuts are very fine and powdery.
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.
Sift a third of the almond flour mixture into the meringue and fold gently to combine.
Add your flavorings/zest now, then sift in the remaining almond flour in two batches. Be gentle! Don’t overfold, but fully incorporate your ingredients.
Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag (I used disposable ones) fitted with a plain half-inch tip. A Ziploc bag with a corner cut off is appropriate too. 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. (as shown in the picture above)
Pipe one-inch-sized (2.5 cm) mounds of batter onto baking sheets lined with nonstick liners (or parchment paper) and bake the macaroon for 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from the oven and raise the temperature to 375°F (190°C). Once the oven is up to temperature, put the pans back in the oven and bake for an additional 7 to 8 minutes, or lightly colored.
Cool on a rack before filling.
Yield: 10 dozen macarons sandwiched with filling.
(in my next attempt I'd definitely love to make some macarons sandwiched with matcha buttercream!)
Good day everyone! =)
It's 27th here in Singapore already, I hope my post isn't too early!