By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2016
It’s spring — a perfect time to bake pink macarons. I’ve made strawberry macarons, but not cherry, so that’s what I baked on Tuesday. I got the idea a few weeks ago after baking a batch of chocolate cherry cupcakes. Since there was extra cherry buttercream frosting, I double wrapped it in a Ziploc bag and put it in the freezer.
Before baking the double cherry macarons, I unfroze the frosting and removed it from the piping bag with the large star tip, which isn’t ideal for piping the filling. I put the contents in a bowl, poured in some heavy cream, and finely chopped up a couple of maraschino cherries. It was a sweeter contrast with the natural cherry fruit spread I’d used, plus the color was even pinker. I spooned it into a smaller piping bag with a round tip.
I was also going to be using eggs that had been resting for almost 48 hours, so I’d see if there was a difference between older eggs and overnight eggs.
Even though I’d had the gel colorant mishap the week before, I had to use a magenta gel colorant if I wanted pretty pink macarons.
At least the filling was already made and at room temperature. Also, I was going to use my new 3-quart stainless steel bowl. The last time I’d had to transfer the batter from a small bowl to a larger bowl before adding the second half of the almond flour/sugar mixture.
After the green colorant fiasco, I only added 2 drops of the magenta colorant. All was going well – the bowl was the right size, the color was bright enough, and I piped 66 shells on 3 separate baking sheets.
There were very few mishaps and with each batch, right around the six-minute mark, I saw the formation of feet! Also, I didn’t notice any difference in the macarons due to the age of the eggs.
The macarons rested for a little while before being filled. As seen in the following photo, I put the shells on a paper towel. Next time I’ll use wax paper to ensure that none of them stick.
By the way, I have an oven thermometer and always watch that carefully as the oven is about 30 degrees colder than what the temperature gauge on the outside of the oven shows. If set at 300 degrees, it will hover in the 250 to 275 vicinity as it did when baking these. In fact, it never even made it to 300 degrees. The results can vary from recipe to recipe and even batch to batch. The chocolate mint macarons had a failed batch and two successful batches within one hour. If you plan to bake macarons, get to know your oven!
Next week I’ll bake another fun and fruity batch of French macarons! Stay tuned!
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