I must confess I was never really into macarons, even when it got really popular with home bakers as well as commercial outlets in recent years. It could be due to the lack of really good macarons here in Asia - no Ladureé or Pierre Hermé outlets here in Hong Kong as far as I'm aware. To be honest, I'm not quite sure why macarons never really caught my interest. That changed recently when I received a generous box of Confiserie Sprüngli's luxemburgerli last winter. There must have been 10 assorted flavors in that box, and it took me (together with Herr Scherrer) no more than a few days to gobble it all down...
When I started researching into macarons with the intention of trying to make some at home, I realized its must be one of the most blogged about baking topic - great for me as I had a lot of references available as well as tips from fellow bakers who generously share their trial and error stories. From what I could gather, its an extremely frustrating process for those brave enough to attempt it at home - plenty of issues including macarons not having feet, batter spreading too much resulting in completely flat macarons, macarons has little peaks that won't go away, to rest or not to rest batter before baking, how much folding is enough / not enough.... gosh the list seems never ending... yet, the idea that one could improvise any sort of flavors into those sandwich cookies is enticing for a home baker - its like having a blank canvas with endless possibilities and room for creativity - the catch is one needs to master the basics first.
After a long period of procrastination, one day I happen to have some egg whites left over in the fridge from working on something else. Almost all macaron recipes advocate the use of aged egg whites for best results... so guess what I did? Yes, make macarons!
Photos posted here are those of my third attempt - green & orange macarons with apricot mascarpone filling. I'm definitely thinking of interesting flavors to attempt next.... watch this space!