Thursday, October 30, 2014

Les Macarons! I took a class to learn how to make these amazing French Treats.

Yesterday I took a 3 hour class with our friend Jill, to learn how to make French Macarons. It was so much fun and so educational. I've always wanted to make them myself but I had heard so many stories about how difficult they are. I'd never attempted to make them but we certainly eat plenty of them while traveling in France.
They are colorful and very tasty. The combinations of different flavored cookies and different flavored fillings are endless. I left the class feeling very confident that I can successfully make them at home.

We made three different flavors:

Pumpkin with Salted Caramel Buttercream
Spiced with Apple Cider Buttercream
Hazelnut with Dark Chocolate Ganache.
They were amazing.

I don't think many people really make them so I won't post any recipes on the blog. I just wanted to share the experience with pictures.
They're not in any order. I captioned some of them.
It's all in the technique to produce a nice Macaron.

There was a Hippy in the Classroom today!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Sifting, sifting and more sifting, the first important technique.
Flour was sifted separately. If using Almond Meal, the residue was removed.
 The Confectioner's Sugar was also sifted separately.
All of the ingredients were placed in a bowl together, and in this
picture , they're sifted together for the last time.
It's sifted onto Parchment Paper so it's easy to add to
a bowl, to be folded together with the Meringue. 

The piping bags are filled with the tip on, and the end of the bag was not
cut until the bag was full.

It's all about the technique to get them piped perfectly onto the parchment circles.

The chef demonstrating the technique of piping the batter,

This is our tray!
We were very pleased with the results.

The batter was weighed so we could share it equally with the other
team in the class.

This was our second tray. We each piped half of them on the sheet pan.
I believe these are the Spiced Macarons.

This is our tray of the Hazelnut Macarons.

Preparing the Dark Chocolate Ganache filling for the Hazelnut Macarons.

Brandy was added to the Ganache.

Salted Caramel for the Buttercream filling in the Pumpkin Macarons.

This is our tray of Pumpkin with Salted Caramel Buttercream filling.
We thought they look pretty good!

This is the food coloring added to the Hazelnut Meringue.

The technique for getting the cookie batter to the perfect consistency.

Getting ready to fold the Flour and the Meringue together for the cookie batter.

The batter ingredients have to be weighed properly.

After they're baked and cooled a bit, we refrigerated them.
This makes them easier to release from the Parchment Paper.
This photograph shows the technique of releasing them by
pulling the paper away from the cookie, rather than trying to pull
the cookie from the paper.
It worked!

I realize that this may seem overwhelming, but the class was so interesting.
I knew that if I ever wanted to make really nice Macarons, I would have to take a class.
Our chef was very talented and patient.
We all felt that we sucessfully accomplished what we came to learn.

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