Once again, I totally didn’t mean to go ghost on you yesterday! Unfortunately I spent most of Tuesday night/Wednesday morning on the couch with a lovely case of false labor.
I’m telling you, there is no greater tease to a pregnant woman in her last weeks than false labor. I seriously felt like Mother Nature was laughing at me. There may have been a few angry tears shed too when everything came to a surprising halt around 4am. I really thought it might be the real deal!
Needless-to-say, I decided that my 5:30 alarm wasn’t happening, and went in to work a few hours late. Pregnancy perks.
But I’m back today (and still babyless) with a recap of a very fun event for you! A macaron-making class with my dear friend and fellow Fredericksburg blogger Aileen!
Now if you’ve been around these parts for any length of time, then you’ll know that I am NOT a baker. Like, at all. I’m whatever the opposite of a baker is. A burner? That sounds about right.
Aileen, however, is like a magic baking goddess. Even more impressive, all the recipes on her blog are vegan! Also, how cute is she?
So when she offered to show us her secret magic ways in the form of a macaron class, me and several of our friends immediately jumped at the chance! She even made us adorable little handouts!
Now, I always knew that macarons were the little French-y cakes that always come in beautiful colors. But what I didn’t fully understand is that most of us actually say it wrong! These petite little cakes are actually pronounced maca-RON-s.
Maca-ROON-s are the little coconut ball things.
Now you know!
But throughout the evening, Aileen showed us the ways of making these amazing little cakes of goodness. Well, mostly she demonstrated and we clumsily followed behind her. Can you tell which ones are her perfect circles and which ones are our weird lumpy ones?
She even “whipped up” an almond buttercream to go in the middle. Ha! I wish I had those skillz.
But the great thing about macarons, she told us, is that you really can fill them with just about anything. The basic cookies themselves are a light almond flavor, so you can easily jazz it up with different flavors or fillings (or colors/sprinkles, like we did!)
Another fun fact, see the little rim at the bottom of each cookie? Those are called the “feet”. Fancy baking terms right here, people! It’s like when you go wine tasting and comment on the tannins like you know what you’re talking about.
Those are some perfect macaron feet you’ve got there! …or something like that.
Overall they were the perfect lightly sweet two-bites of perfection. And honestly, a lot easier to make than I assumed they would be. Not that I’m going to be able to whip any up without some serious baking goddess supervision, but I think that’s more of a me issue.
Now you didn’t think I was going to leave you all without a recipe, did you? Aileen kindly agreed to let me share her recipe for Classic Almond Macarons. And then you should go check out her much fancier Raspberry and Elderflower Vegan Macarons!
Classic Almond Macarons
- 1 cup + 6 tbsp blanched almond flour
- 1 cup + 1 tbsp powdered sugar
- 3 egg whites, at room temperature
- ½ cup + ½ tbsp. granulated sugar
- Gel food coloring, as needed
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees
- In a food processor, combine the almond flour and powdered sugar. Make sure everything is combined and processed thoroughly. Move this mixture to a sifter and discard any chunks.
- In a very clean stand mixing bowl, place your egg whites and whisk on medium until the eggs are frothy (1-2 minutes). Once they are frothy, add 1/3 of the granulated sugar, turning the whisk up to a 7 or 8. Add the rest of the sugar and food coloring, if applicable. Beat the eggs and sugar on high until stuff peaks form (5-8 minutes).
- Fold the almond/sugar mixture into the meringue. Once combined, the mixture should be thick and shiny, but not stiff.
- Place the mixture into a piping bag and pipe silver dollar-sized maracons onto a cookie sheet (Aileen recommends putting either a Silpat, silicone mat or parchment paper on the sheet to prevent sticking). Bang the tray on the counter a few times to get the macarons to smooth out. Let them dry on the counter for 15-20 minutes, or until they are dry to the touch (this is what creates the feet).
- Bake the macarons at 300 degrees for 15 minutes. Double the tray if you can, to help prevent burning.
So tell me: Are you as obsessed with these adorable mini cookies as I am? Anyone else made them before?