Hello world! It has been quite a while, but I’m hoping to get this food blog up and running again and perhaps even expand its breadth to something more than just a food blog. Also, I’m planning on posting some dorm-friendly recipes up once I get back on campus. I left my big fancy camera in the States, so these photos will have to do for now.
Anyway, on to the food. French macarons have been a trend in Bangkok for a while now and images of these confections have been popping up all over my Facebook for the past year or two. When I saw a shop at Terminal 21 sell a box of 16 macrons for 600 baht ($20)., I knew I could do better and took matters into my own hands.
This was my first time making macarons and actually only the second time every eating them. It took me two trials to get it right, but I finally got the “perfect” macaron, complete with the feet! It was a pretty successful feat (sorry, I can’t help myself!), if I do say so myself.
Letting the piped macarons rest before baking
How do I get the results in attempt #2?
- Avoid flat, misshapen macarons by making sure to beat your egg whites enough and handling the dough quickly and with a gentle hand when piping
- Get feet (the little thing that sticks out on the base of the cookie and makes it look like a macaron!) by “aging” the egg whites. Normally, people apparently separate the egg whites a couple days prior to using them. I skipped this step and sped up the process by zapping the egg whites in the microwave on med-high heat for ~7 seconds
What, I can make these low fat?
I replaced the ganache in this recipe with my own “low-fat” one, replacing evaporated milk for the whipping cream. I prefer this because I avoid buying whipping cream if I can help it – I can never use up the whole carton and I feel bad about wasting it. So, using evaporated milk is a nice (and coincidentally low-fat) option!
So… I’ve been ripped off?
Well I brought these to work and a co-worker asked me how much it cost to make these (considering that they are pretty pricey when sold in the store). I calculated it out and it comes out to about 5 baht per macaron… compared to the Take that Terminal 21! However, I’m not sure it was worth the time, trouble, and cleaning so I’m not sure how often I will be making these in the future.
Finding the ingredients in Bangkok
- The most affordable place to get ground almonds in Bangkok is at the UFM baking store on Sukhumvit, Soi 31 (next to the UFM cooking school), where they sell a 200 gram bag for 125 baht. They also sell dark chocolate there at ~85 baht for 200 grams.
- You can also find dark chocolate at Big-C. I recommend the Casino brand, where you can get 2 bars (400 grams) for 125 baht.
Recipe Box Chocolate Macarons Recipe from Joy of Baking - 100 grams ground almonds - 170 grams confectioners sugar - 15 grams cocoa powder - 100 grams egg whites (egg whites from 3 eggs) - 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar - 35 grams superfine sugar 1.) Place almonds, confectioners sugar and cocoa powder in a food processor and pulse for 30 seconds until combined. Sift the mixture. 2.) Whisk/ beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy. Add the superfine sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold in the almond mixture in 3 batches. 3.) Put the mixture into a piping bag and pipe 1 1/2 inch rounds on a cookie tray lined with parchment paper. Bang the pan on a table 2-3 times to get rid of air bubbles and let it rest for 30-60 minutes until a skin forms on top of the macarons and the tops lose their shine. 4.) Bake the macarons in a pre-heated oven at 160 degrees C/ 325 degrees F for 14-16 minutes. Macarons are done when they just barely separate from the parchment paper. Let the cookies cool on a wire rack. Low-Fat Ganache This "ganache" uses evaporated milk instead of cream. It creates a smooth, rich filling perfect for macarons. - 3/4 cup (4.5 oz) semisweet chocolate chips - 6 tablespoons evaporated milk Melt the chocolate and evaporated milk together in the microwave in 15-30 second increments on High. Stir until the mixture becomes smooth and glossy. Let cool, and then store in the refrigerator. Check on it every once in a while and give it a good mix until it becomes your desired consistency to fill your macarons!