french macaron making – chocolate and salted caramel macarons

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This past Sunday, my dear friend Lindsay and I took a macaron making class at Baking Arts in San Francisco. I have long wanted to attempt making macarons at home, and have prepared by reading countless blogs and watching numerous youtube videos. But all of this advice left me more confused than ever.  Was it necessary to “age” egg whites? {no} Did the macarons need to sit on the counter before going into the oven to develop a “skin”?  {no} How could I achieve that perfect texture that was dry and crisp on the outside and perfectly chewy on the inside? {sheer luck.  j/k} Luckily, the class we took completely demystified the whole experience, making it totally accessible for the home cook, with professional looking and tasting results!  Linds and I were the non-conformists of the group, foregoing harshly bright food coloring for a more natural, minimalistic vibe.  We sprinkled the tops of our macarons with espresso powder and filled them with a mixture of dark chocolate ganache and salted caramel.  Now that I have confronted my macaron making fears, I cannot wait to host a little macaron making party for my girlfriends, complete with champagne of course!  Look out Pierre Herme!

{As an aside, I think that the most challenging part of the whole process was measuring out exactly 55 grams of egg whites – Linds and I laughed hysterically that it took us nearly 10 tries to get it right.  Stupid gloppy egg whites.}

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31 Responses to french macaron making – chocolate and salted caramel macarons

  1. Looks brilliant! I’m doing a macaron course in September and can’t wait!

  2. Darya says:

    Beautiful! I never took a macaron class (probably should) and I don’t have any of the required utensils anymore, but I did try making them once, and they turned out quite well (they were NOT very smooth though)! Yours look perfect, and I am sure now you are no longer “afraid” of them, you will be making batch after batch for us to rave about. Hope you are well and enjoying the summer!

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      How fun! I am sure your macarons turned out beautifully! What flavor did you make? You’re right – the utensils are the most difficult thing about making macarons! I need to go out and buy an electric thermometer to make sure that my sugar water is the perfect temperature before adding it slowing to the egg whites! It’s all quite scientific, isn’t it?! But the results are so beautiful and delicious that I suppose it’s worth it! Hope you’re doing well too! Hope Paris is finally starting to feel like summer after so many months of grey and rain! xoxo

  3. I have been doing the same thing, studying macaron’s. I tried a couple of weeks ago and failed miserably I don’t think the recipe I used was good. Are you going to post a recipe, I want to make them again. Your macarons’s are beautiful!!

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Haha – we are totally on the same wavelength. I will definitely share the recipe soon – it was quite easy and macarons can be made in an afternoon {it’s not the hours-long or even days-long process I thought it was}. It’s just extremely scientific and precise, which I am not always good at. I do think going to a class helps, to see in person how it’s done – there is something about hearing the words and seeing the actions together in an intimate class that is so much better than any video on youtube. Definitely do not give up though Suzanne! 🙂 xoxo

  4. Macarons are not easy to get right! Yours look absolutely perfect. Brava!

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Thank you so much! I am sure that it was simply beginner’s luck {or that our instructor swapped ours out for his} and I will never achieve these results again! 🙂 I will definitely try again from home soon though, and will post the recipe! xoxo

      • Looking forward to it! They are really beautiful. I think that the most valuable lesson is knowing how the mixture should look and feel. Sounds like you have that down already!

      • fleurdeselsf says:

        Yes – you are right – it’s all about judging the texture as you are folding in the meringue. Fingers crossed! 🙂

  5. laurasmess says:

    You are a baking queen Lindsay (by the way, is your friend also called Lindsay?! I was confused for a second but then figured this was a guest post… but then I changed my mind!). I’ve never been brave enough to attempt macarons myself but maybe I need to change that. Lovely post, perfect confections of delicate crust and a fudgy centre. Thank you so much dearest! xx

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Haha yes Laura – you are so observant! Yes, my friend’s name is also Lindsay, which can be somewhat confusing when we meet people but ultimately easier to remember! And, she spells it the “right” way – with an “a” and not an “e”. Random fact – we were both named after Lindsay Wagner from the Bionic Woman. Children of the 80s…Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement, as always. xoxo

      • laurasmess says:

        Haha, the bionic woman! That’s really cool. I’m an 80’s child also, but I think that I was named after some news presenter on the BBC. Completely boring! And argh, I didn’t realize that I had been spelling your name wrong. Wah. Sorry hon :/ xx

  6. Gorgeous, They look perfect!!

  7. Macarons! Lindsay, I am so impressed! Laura said it perfectly; I couldn’t agree more =) Hope all is well, lovely! xo

  8. Susan L. says:

    Hi Lindsay! Awesome macarons– beautiful! Would you consider writing a post where you answer all your loyal readers’ questions? Here are mine:
    (1) What advice do you have for new or inexperienced cooks? In particular, what should we have on the shelf and in the fridge?
    (2) What restaurants do you recommend in the SF area? OC?
    (3) Such awesome pictures, especially the macro shots! What type of lens are you using your camera?
    (4) Since your blog is called Fleur de Sel, 🙂 what types of salt do you recommend having on hand? Does salt last longer than other spices (I hope)?
    Thanks! xoxo

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Hi Susan! Hope you’re doing well! I am so honored and humbled that you would be interested in my answers to any of those questions! 🙂 Your comment actually makes me want to do a little FAQ page where I would share some answers to questions like these. I particularly love the question about what I keep on hand at all times – was just pondering it in response to another question I received. I will definitely work on creating an FAQ page soon, but in response to the lens question, it is all about the 50 mm! It is seriously the best and can make a complete novice photographer like me take decent shots. And, it’s rather cheap, as far as lenses go…about $100…Thank you so much for reading and for being such a wonderful supporter! xoxo

  9. These look perfect! And I love the flavors, chocolate and salted caramel has my name written all over it!

  10. bp says:

    Lindsay! I took the same class led by Richard three years ago & it was very informative & successful… Though inhave not reattempted the recipe at home! It’s definitely a team effort! You two looked like you were having a ball!!! Yummy!

  11. bp says:

    Lindsay! I took the same class led by Richard three years ago & it was very informative & successful… though i have not reattempted the recipe at home! It’s definitely a team effort! You two looked like you were having a ball!!! Yummy!

  12. Marcos ukul says:

    Hi Lindsay, your macaroons look so perfect, do u mind share ur recipe?
    Look so beautiful. There a lot of recipes in youtube and website but your is so extremly amazing. Love it so yummy..

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Thank you Marcos! I will definitely do a post very soon regarding the macarons, and will include the recipe. It was so straight-forward and easy that I definitely want to share it with my loyal readers! Hope to post it sometime in August. Thank you for stopping by!

  13. Shari says:

    My brother recommended I may like this website.
    He was once totally right. This publish actually made
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    Thank you!

  14. Sheila says:

    Okay, so I just went out and purchased sea salt. It is thick crystals.
    So what should I do? I really want to take care of the piercing because trust me, it wasn’t low cost!.

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