Yes! I did it! I finally made the perfect macarons! They don't look like little boobs and they're not hollow. Absolute perfection. The secret? Brave Tart. Go check out her blog, she is seriously a macaron goddess.
After many failed attempts and sometimes mediocre results, I found her blog post about macaron myths. She made making them sound so easy, not like some detailed ritual that most recipes do. So I did what she said. The first batch came out completely cracked, and I thought I had another dud. Until I checked my oven and it was 50 degrees higher than what I had set it at, so yeah, if you're having macaron issues get thee an oven thermometer.
The second batch I monitored the temp carefully, and voila. Don't these look kickass?
Raspberry Macarons with Meyer Lemon Filling
use the basic Vanilla French Macaron recipe from Brave Tart, but substitute 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract with 1/2 teaspoon raspberry flavoring (you may need to adjust this depending how strong your raspberry flavoring is and how strong you want it to be)
If you like it quite pink add a few drops of pink food coloring when she recommends adding in the recipe (before last whipping of the meringue)
Meyer Lemon Buttercream:
1/2 cup sugar
2 large egg whites
1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Zest of 1 Meyer Lemon
Juice of 1/2 a Meyer Lemon
In the bowl of a stand mixer or a heat proof bowl, add the sugar and egg whites together. Whisk constantly over a saucepan of simmering water. Keep whisking the mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and place the bowl back to the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat the meringue on medium high until it cools. Switch to the paddle attachment and add the butter, one tablespoon at a time, beating until smooth. Once all the butter is in, beat the buttercream until thick and very smooth, about 6-10 minutes. Add lemon zest and lemon juice and beat until well incorporated.
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