French Macarons for #SundaySupper

Posted by on Apr 14, 2013 in #SundaySupper, Sweet Treats | 36 comments

French Macarons for #SundaySupper

They adorn a thousand window displays. Endlessly versatile, they are drama queens in sugar and almond form. They are the veritable stars of French patisserie. Allow me to present French Macarons – or Macaroons, to give them their anglicised name – especially for this Movie-inspired #SundaySupper. Our Director/host is Heather of girlichef – and it’s safe to say that the theme completely captured my imagination.

I undertook ‘research’ with some afternoons of film-viewing in order to come up with a dish to present. As soon as I stumbled across the frothy, pink decadence which is Marie Antoinette (2006, directed by Sofia Coppola and starring Kirsten Dunst), I knew I had found my foodie film. The film itself is low in substance but high in appearance – the glittering costumes and, of course, the artistic, indulgent food, make it perfect Sunday afternoon chocolate-box viewing.

Strawverry Macarons

An obvious choice may have been cake, but given the sheer sumptuousness of this film, I decided to aim for patisserie’s ultimate star: the Macaron. Like souffles, Macarons have an almost mythical aura about them, touted as being fiendish to make, where the slightest inaccuracy can lead to disaster. Given that I am severely lacking in skills of precision and accuracy, being a somewhat freeform and chaotic baker, I approached the task with a sense of trepidation, and even made sure I had enough ingredients to make another batch, if necessary.

However, I was pleasantly surprised. While not the easiest thing in the world to make, the list of ingredients is hardly mind-blowing and it’s not rocket science – just takes a bit of time, patience and practice. This is my first-ever batch, and while they are far from perfect, I am happy with the way they have turned out. After reading various recipes and tips, I was terrified of overmixing, which meant I didn’t get the batter quite as smooth and runny as it should have been, but it means that I just can’t wait to try another batch. They really are delightful to make!

Macaroons

Considering how pretty and pink the film is, these Macarons could only be pink (I wasn’t quite up to making different colours and flavours on my first go), and I filled them with strawberry buttercream.

If you are tempted by these, please don’t be frightened of having a go!

French Macarons
Yields 20
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Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
For the Macarons
  1. 3 large egg whites
  2. 75g caster sugar
  3. 140g icing sugar
  4. 100g ground almonds
For the strawberry filling
  1. 1 tbsp butter or margarine
  2. Approx 100g icing sugar
  3. 1 large or a couple of small strawberries
For the Macarons
  1. Preheat the oven to 160C and line 2 flat baking trays with baking parchment.
  2. Sift the ground almonds and icing through a seive - this is important as it makes sure the mixture is very fine and not grainy.
  3. Set to one side and put the egg whites into a large, spotlessly clean bowl. Have the caster sugar ready in a smaller bowl.
  4. Whisk the egg whites with an electric whisk until they turn white and begin to thicken. Then add the caster sugar a little at a time, whisking continuously.
  5. The mixture should be stiff and not move when the bowl is turned upside down.
  6. Working quickly but gently, add a few drops of pink food colouring and tip in half the almond mixture into the meringue and fold in. Then add the remaining mixture and continue to fold until you have a smooth and runny batter. You can add more food colouring as desired.
  7. Spoon the batter into a piping bag. You could use a nozzle to pipe, but I just cut the end off a disposable piping bag.
  8. Pipe small circles of the mixture onto the baking trays, leaving adequate space between each one, because they may spread a little as they bake.
  9. Leave for at least 20 mins to allow the macarons to form a 'skin'. They should be resistant and not sticky to the touch.
  10. Tap each tray onto the counter to get rid of any air bubbles, then bake in the middle of the oven for 15 mins.
  11. Remove from oven and transfer the macarons, still on the baking parchment, to wire racks to cool.
  12. Once thoroughly cooled, peel the macarons away from the baking parchment and set aside.
To make the filling
  1. Finely chop the strawberries (or give them a quick whiz in a blender, depending on how smooth you want the filling) then place in a bowl with the butter and icing sugar (sifted).
  2. Whisk to a smooth, creamy mixture. It should be stiff enough to spread on the macarons; add more icing sugar if it is too runny.
  3. Use a palette knife to spread some buttercream on one macaron shell and sandwich together with another. Repeat until all the macarons are done.
  4. Leave to set completely, then serve.
Notes
  1. Piping tip: To avoid a messy situation when transferring the macaron mixture, put the piping bag into a tall glass or cocktail shaker and turn the top over to hold in place. It makes it much easier to spoon in the mixture.
Happy Baking Days http://www.happybakingdays.com/
Here’s the full cast-list for our Movie-inspired #SundaySupper – enjoy the food and the films!

Toast (bready things)

No Reservations (soups and salads)

Today’s Special (fish, chicken, beef, and pork)

Forks Over Knives (veggie-heavy dishes and sides)

Udon (pasta and noodles)

Just Desserts (sweet treats)

Bottle Shock (beverages)

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday, April 14th to talk all about movies that have inspired us to head into the kitchen – and the food that comes from that inspiration (7pm EST)!  We’ll tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world.   Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more delicious recipes and food photos.

 

 

36 Comments

  1. Delightful looking macaroons, Katy…You’ve inspired me to make macarons and take an afternoon off to enjoy a film!

    • That sounds like a perfect plan!

  2. Your macaroons are gorgeous!

    • Thank you, Jennie!

  3. Your macarons look delicate and beautiful and perfectly scrumptious!

  4. Applause, applause! I’ve always been too intimidated to try these!
    Jen @JuanitasCocina recently posted..Spaghetti and Meatballs with Gravy ~ Movie Inspired #SundaySupper!My Profile

    • I hope you feel less intimidated now :)

  5. I had forgotten about M.Antoinette and it´s pastel sweets. Love your chosen recipe! Perfect and such an accomplishment!
    Paula @ Vintage Kitchen recently posted..Chocolate Almond Torte with Raspberries (gluten free) #SundaySupperMy Profile

    • Thank you very much! It just happened to be on the TV one afternoon not long ago, and it fitted the theme so well!

  6. I need to absolutely check out the movie!! odd that I hadn’t seen it before. btw your macaron, simply perfect.

    • Thank you so much!

  7. I love that movie! Macarons are one thing that continue to elude me. One day I’ll figure them out!
    Amanda @ MarocMama recently posted..الدار البيضاء Fish Tajine for #SundaySupperMy Profile

    • I think you can get bamboozled by all the different tips and advice out there. Good luck!

  8. I think Macarons were definitely the way to go – fun and dainty and yes, PINK! I love that you chose Marie Antoinette, as well…so unexpected. :) Do you ship to the U.S?
    Heather @girlichef recently posted..Beet Chips …inspired by Food Matters {#SundaySupper Movie-inspired Recipes}My Profile

    • Thank you, it was such a great theme! Lol maybe I should start a shipping service!

  9. I have yet to make macarons and you have inspired me to take a leap and make them soon. Your pink ones are so pretty and I wish I could reach in the screen and grab one right now.
    Renee recently posted..Beef and Onions Braised in Beer for #SundaySupperMy Profile

    • Thank you! I’m sure yours will be wonderful when you make them!

  10. So beautiful!!! One of life’s tragedies, I’m allergic to almonds so I’ll have to appreciate these from afar. It was especially hard seeing them line the windows when I visited Paris… grrr! Lovely post and pics!

    • Oh no!! As a coeliac, they’re one of the few patisserie items I CAN have, so I just love them! So sorry you can’t have them :(

  11. Whoa, great job on the macs! Perfectly done…I need to give these another shot :)
    Liz recently posted..Croque-Monsieur..#SundaySupper, #MovieInspiredRecipesMy Profile

  12. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing the recipe. I have to try these. :)
    Shannon @VillageGirlBlog recently posted..Scones inspired by the Movie Tea With Mussolini #SundaySupperMy Profile

    • Thank you, I hope you enjoy them!

  13. I have never made macaroons but they are top of my bucket list. Yours look so very good!! I adored Marie Antoinette and have the movie upstairs. I need to watch it again.

    • I hope you are inspired to make some, and I hope that they turn out well!

  14. I don’t think I’ve ever had a French Macaron! Now I desperately want one! Great looking dessert!

    • WHAT?! Oh wow, I wish I could send you some right this instant – you need to try one, or preferably several, given the range of flavours available! Get yourself to Paris, or at least the nearest patisserie!

  15. They look wonderful!! Happy noshing!
    Sarah Reid, RHNC (@jo_jo_ba) recently posted..Better Baked Mac & Cheese for #SundaySupper Movie NightMy Profile

    • Thank you Sarah!

  16. I’ve never tried making macarons, but you make me feel like I could do it!
    Shelby | Diabetic Foodie recently posted..Goat Cheese Basil Grits for #SundaySupperMy Profile

    • That’s so sweet of you, I’m so glad it had that effect :)

  17. Mmmm…these look absolutely dreamy with strawberry & almond together. Yum!
    Conni @FoodieArmyWife recently posted..The Last One | #AuroraBorealisMy Profile

  18. You are so brave to try these, Katy!! :-) Your first tries look fantastic. And I would love to taste your strawberry buttercream filling. Wonderful. :-)
    Krista recently posted..Crab Apples, Spiced Currant Porridge, and Time to RestMy Profile

    • Thank you luv! Strawberry buttercream is amazing, but so sinful!

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