07 April 2013

Stay Hydrated -- Important for Baking as Well as Running

It's been a while since I've made macarons but I decided that Muffin is old enough to appreciate the work that goes into them now (she loves them; her favorite books from when she first started picking out books are macarons cookbooks; she knows that when Daddy travels to Bangkok or Singapore he comes home with macarons). We needed a project for today and I thought this would be novel enough to hold Muffin's attention. Plus, the dry weather is perfect for baking them -- even though it's monstrously hot outside (108 F / 42 C) so it's a little insane to be lighting the oven. We stayed well-hydrated with ice water and took cooling breaks in the air-conditioned parts of the house. And we had a very fun morning with a delicious reward.

The last time I made them I used Cecile Cannone's Macarons: Authentic French Cookie Recipes from the Macaron Cafe. This time I used Berengere Abraham's Macarons. I found Abraham's recipes to be, not easier exactly, but less labor intensive because they are in smaller quantities. There's a lot of waiting time, though, so they are not "quick and easy." Good if you like to clean as you go, bad if you have an anxious kitchen helper. As you'll see from the photos, having a smaller quantity means there's less room for mistakes if you want beautiful, photogenic macarons. I think I'll stick with Abraham's, though, until I become more practiced. Cannone's large batches can be saved for a big Christmas party. Abraham's are for having a couple people over for coffee.

We were inspired by the photo of the raspberry macarons, but we used store-bought jam instead of making our own. Muffin requested strawberry jam in half of them and raspberry jam in the others.


Muffin was so delighted with her work that it was worth the heat and the "wasted" batter of her imperfect cookies. I think she wants to do this every Sunday now. When we're back in the U.S. I want to take Muffin to Cecile Cannone's bakery in New York to see if "Madame Cecile," as Muffin calls her, will autograph Muffin's book.

1 comment:

Suz and Allan said...

Aww that looks like so much fun Stephanie!