Good night, I am so almighty sick of hearing people whimper at the altar of the macaron cult.
They’re so hard to make. They’re too hard to make. You will fail if you try to make them. You have to age your egg whites, and they can not be cold, not even a bit. You have to age your piped rounds. You have to use cream of tartar. You have to be absolutely certain your powdered sugar contains no cornstarch. And on and on it goes.
I made the most lovely macarons I’ve ever tasted, and they were perfect on the first try. (You’re gonna want to sit down now because…) I used wheat flour. And a hand mixer! Aaah!
Shut up! Yes I did! And they were just as smunchy and sweet and delicious as anything you could buy at a patisserie for four bucks a pop.
I call them “Mockarons,” and here is the recipe:
makes 8 cookies
Two egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract (optional)
1/3 heaping cup flour
1 cup powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the flour and powdered sugar.
Put the regular sugar and egg whites in a mixing bowl. Get your hand mixer out and mix them on medium-high for around 8 minutes. At this point, put in your almond flavoring or rose water or whatever. Food coloring might be a nice touch. Totally up to you.
Then turn the mixer on high and spin ’em around for another five minutes or so. They should be stiff-stiff-stiff and rather dry.
Unceremoniously dump in the flour-sugar mixture. Fold it in, but while you do, smoosh the batter against the sides and bottom of the bowl.
You’re getting some of the air out of the egg whites, and you’re making sure the powdered sugar is nice and consistently wet. At first you’ll think I’m insane, but stuff should be looking about right at around 30-45 smooshes. At this point, when you lift your spatula out of the batter, it should flow slowly like lava — neither stiff nor runny.
The next part works best with parchment paper and a pastry bag. If you don’t have a pastry bag, cut one of the bottom corners off a Ziploc baggie. Now you have a pastry bag. Hooray!
Put a piece of parchment paper down on a baking sheet. Fill the pastry bag with the batter. Using a circular motion, pipe 16 little rounds of batter on the sheet, about an inch apart. Remember, you must pipe in a circle, not up-and-down like a soft-serve cone — at least, if you don’t want the tops to crack.
Once you’re all piped out, take the sheet and BANG it on the counter. Two times! Then rotate it 90 degrees and bang it again, also two times. You’re getting the air bubbles out of the cookies.
Bake ’em for about 15 minutes. Take them out before they start to brown. Remove the parchment from the sheet, and let them cool for a minute, then part them from the paper with a spatula.
Once they’re cool, pipe or spread on the filling of your choice. Jam. Buttercream. Storebought frosting you had leftover in the fridge and have been secretly eating in the middle of the night when you get up to pee and you know it’s bad as well as bad for you but you just don’t care.
Just be aware that storebought frosting will taste like storebought frosting and seriously cheapen the way your cookies taste.
Try not to eat all of them at once.