Before going to high school (years and years ago ;)), I didn’t know anything about macarons. Surprisingly, I do remember what went on in my mind the first time I saw them. At the time I did not know anything about their origin, taste, ingredients …
I thought a macaron was an overrated, kitschy “techno” cookie that only high society wannabe new age brats consumed. But they’d only do it inside public coffee shops, for it would make no sense if nobody saw them taking bites off a too orange (or pink or green) piece of pastry.
Looking back, I guess I was jealous. Even before I knew how wonderful these sweet delicate “cookies” can be. To be honest, I was a very low-budget high-school girl, working part-time most of the time. And paying rent for some lousy room that was usually too small, and moist. So it took me years before I actually got to trying my first macaron.
When I finally did, I discovered heaven on Earth.
It was so good, I thought I had been missing half of all the good life before that moment. After that, I changed my mind. I now love macarons. Talking about the French version, which is quite delicate to make.
Delicate preparation or not, I’m posting my very first try. I didn’t complicate much. Texture wise, they could turn out better, but taste wise, they are simply perfect.
And I plan to make more, and I will try making them look more like the real stuff. Plus, I will enjoy every single bite I did not take back high school. In the privacy of my cozy home (still rented) and in the company of my loved ones who can’t stop praising them.
Before you begin making macarons, here are some important notes for this delicate treat:
Prepare eggs 2 days in advance: Separate egg yolks from the whites. Store these in the fridge in two separate airtight containers. You can use the yolks for something else because you’re not gonna need them this time. Take the whites out a few hours before making macarons; They need to get to the room temperature.
Apparently, how the macarons turn out, depends on just too many factors. Those can be controlled by who knows who or what. Could even be the moon. But there’s some advice you can find on the internet, so look around if interested. When I find out what works best with this recipe, I’ll update.
Good luck and enjoy this pistachio version! In the future, I intend making other flavors with ingredients even lower in carbs!
- Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C). Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
- Grind the almonds. Use a food processor, equipped with an s blade. Don’t mix for too long as you might end up with almond butter.
- Add the powdered erythritol and keep processing until you get fine and sweet almond flour.
- Using an electric mixer, start beating the egg whites. When they get bubbly, slowly start adding in granulated erythritol. Keep mixing until the whites are very stiff and shiny.
- Add the matcha powder now. At this point, you can decide to use more matcha than me, or not use it at all. My main purpose with matcha was to get the batter to become slightly green, as I didn’t want to use artificial colors. You can, of course, use anything yo make the macarons green.
- When matcha is well incorporated into the whites, gently fold in ⅓ of the erythritol-almond flour mixture. Then, using a rubber spatula, mix in the rest of the erythritol-almond mix. The mixture should get a honey-like consistency. Mine, for example, was a bit too dense. Apparently, I should have mixed it longer.
- Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag, and make a ½ inch hole at the tip. Pipe 1-inch rounds 1 inch apart on the prepared parchment-lined baking pan. (Never mind my cookie-maker method in the picture. I won’t use the cookie maker for macarons again, as I’d want them to be smooth and look more like normal macarons in the end. )
- Now, let the shells dry for at least 30 minutes. You can leave them out to dry for 1 and a half hours. Even if you forget about them for a bit longer, it shouldn’t do any harm. They should not be sticky to touch before going into the oven.
- Put in the oven and bake for approximately 15 minutes. Don’t bake the shells for longer than 18 minutes, as they might get overbaked, and lose that gentle texture which makes the macarons so special.
To figure out if they’re done, try lifting one of the shells off the parchment paper. If it doesn’t stick to the paper, take the batch out of the oven and slide the shells off the baking pan. If they still stick after 17 minutes, return them to the oven for a minute or two, then take them out and let them cool for 5 minutes on the parchment paper taken off the baking pan.
- Take them off the parchment paper, one by one, turning them upside down, so they are ready to be topped. It is easier to tear the parchment paper off at the bottom instead of trying to lift each shell off the parchment paper.
- Grind the pistachio as finely as possible, together with stevia.
- Using a hand electric mixer, mix the soft butter well.
- Add the fine pistachio mixture and the vanilla extract. Mix well.
ASSEMBLING THE MACARONS
- Take each macaron shell, top it with the pistachio cream, and cover with another shell. Try choosing similar shell sizes.
- Leave the macarons in the fridge for one day for the flavors to combine well, and for the macarons to soften.
- Before serving the macarons, leave them at the room temperature for an hour. Then, let them melt in your mouth!