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Mocha Macarons (Plus Lots of Tips)

I baked my first batch of macarons back in Nov 2012 after I saw my friend Kenrick’s beautiful creation. Being fascinated, I asked him for the recipe and made mine right away. Macarons are too sweet for me but I enjoy making them. Throughout my three years of macaron quest I have tried different recipes and methods. I have experimented with different sugar ratios in order to make my macarons less sweet. It was not easy as the feet would diminish with the reduction of sugar. There was even one time that I cut the sugar too much that my shells wouldn’t dry after a full night of resting! So now I simply accept the fact that macarons are sweet by nature. All I do is to pair them up with ingredients and/or fillings that are salty, bitter or tart to balance/mask the sweetness.
2012年11月,EC在看過朋友Kenrick做的小圓餅後便深深被吸引,詢問過食譜後EC首次試做馬卡龍。馬卡龍太甜了,可是EC卻很享受製作過程,在這三年多的馬卡龍製作歲月裏,EC試過不同配方及做法的馬卡龍食譜,亦嘗試更改糖量以便研究低糖版,可是原來減少糖量會嚴重影響裙邊,更試過因為減掉太多糖而令馬卡龍風乾了一整夜也不結皮,後來唯有接受馬卡龍是與生俱來的甜吧!現在EC盡量會以味道帶鹹、苦或酸的材料及/或餡料作配搭,藉以平衡/掩飾馬卡龍的甜。

My lumpy and hamburger-looking chocolate macarons. That was my very first time and marked the beginning of my macaron quest three years ago. 這是EC三年前首次做的朱古力馬卡龍,表面粗糙形狀像漢堡包,是EC馬卡龍旅程的開始。
My lumpy and hamburger-looking chocolate macarons. That was my very first time and marked the beginning of my macaron quest three years ago.
這是EC三年前首次做的朱古力馬卡龍,表面粗糙形狀像漢堡包,是EC馬卡龍旅程的開始。

Making macarons can sometimes be frustrating, i have made macarons that are cracked, hollow, lopsided, undercooked, overcooked and feetless before.  And here are some of my tips for you:
製作馬卡龍有時會很令人沮喪,EC也曾經做過爆面、空心、高低不平、未熟透、過熟及欠缺裙邊的馬卡龍,以下是EC綜合經驗後的心得分享:

1. Grind your ground almond until finely ground unless extra-fine ground almond is used. I have made my own ground almond with blanched almonds as well. Blitzing just the blanched almonds or ground almond alone in the food processor will easily turn it into a nut paste. You need to do it along with the icing sugar. Remove any big bits by shifting the mixture or else your baked macaron shells will be bumpy.
1. 若不是使用特幼杏仁粉的話請先將杏仁粉磨幼,EC試過自己用去皮杏仁磨成杏仁粉,只將杏仁或杏仁粉放入食物處理器中直接打碎會很容易變成杏仁醬唷!打粉時必須加入糖粉同打,之後過篩去除大顆粒才開始使用,這是令馬卡龍表面光滑不粗糙的秘訣。

2. If your ground almond feels wet or oily, dry by spreading it evenly on a baking tray in a 200°F/95°C preheated oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool completely before using.
2. 若杏仁粉受潮或出油可先以低溫烘乾,將杏仁粉平均撒在焗盆上,放入200°F/95°C預熱焗爐烘十至十五分鐘,放涼後便可使用。

3. Some bakers swear by using aged egg whites while other says fresh egg whites are fine as well. I’ve tried both and got better luck with aged egg whites. I usually separate my eggs the day before then leave the bowl of egg whites loosely covered in the fridge. I bring them back to room temperature before beating.
3. 有關採用新鮮還是老蛋白之說眾說紛紜,EC兩者也有嘗試,覺得使用老蛋白時成功率較高,EC通常在前一天將蛋白分開放在碗中,用保鮮紙虛掩後放回雪櫃保存,隔天取出回溫後才開始打發。

4. Beat your egg whites until almost stiff peaks form. It should be shiny and glossy. I add cream of tartar to help with the stability.
4. 蛋白宜打發至接近乾性發泡,顏色應帶光澤,EC會加入他他粉增強穩定性。

5. It is important to fold the batter to its correct constituency. This folding process is called the macaronage. Many describes the perfect consistency as “lava-like”. I have never seen lava in person so I judge by how the batter flows down from my spatula. When the batter flows down like a thick ribbon and the trail disappears in about 30 seconds, it is ready. If you overmix the batter it will be too runny to be piped into perfect circles.
5. 攪拌麵糊的過程(macaronage)也十分重要,很多人形容只要把麵糊拌到像岩漿一樣才行,可是EC沒見過真正的熔岩呢!EC會觀察麵糊從膠刮落下的情況,當麵糊呈厚絲帶般緩慢地流下並出現摺痕,而痕跡會在大約三十秒內消失便可停止攪拌了,攪拌過度的麵糊唧出來後會變得扁平及外向瀉成不規則形狀。

6. After piping the batter into circles, bang the baking tray on the counter several times to release the gas bubbles. Pop any visible air bubbles with a toothpick. Make sure that a skin has formed before baking or the shells will be feetless or crack in the oven. They should look dried out and won’t stick to your finger when touched. On a humid or rainy day, I place my baking tray under the ceiling fan to speed up the drying process. Why rest the shells? When the air in a shell expands in the hot oven it pushes the shell upwards. There is no way for the air to pass through the surface because a skin has developed. So the only option is to escape sideways from the bottom, creating feet which is the characteristic of macarons.
6. 唧好圓形後要把焗盆往枱上敲幾下震掉氣泡,仍有氣泡的話則可用牙籤刺破,之後要風乾表皮,否則馬卡龍表面會裂開或無法焗出漂亮的裙邊,風乾後的馬卡龍顏色轉為暗啞,以指尖輕掃時不會沾手,天氣潮濕或下雨時EC會開吊扇協助風乾馬卡龍。那為什麼要風乾馬卡龍至結皮呢?當馬卡龍內的空氣在焗爐中受熱膨脹時,空氣會將馬卡龍往上推高,由於馬卡龍表面已結了厚皮,空氣無法從上面跑便唯有往底部四周逃出,馬卡龍的著名裙邊就是這樣形成的。

7. Regulate the oven temperature with an oven thermometer (read about my post about understanding oven accuracy here). An oven that is too hot makes your shells cracked and look like volcanoes. If your oven temperature is too low, your shells may have firmed up but the interior could be still undercooked. The inside will then collapse and you will end up with hollow shells.
7. 用焗爐溫度計控制爐溫(有關爐溫的重要性可參考這裡),爐溫過高會令馬卡龍爆裂得像個火山,相反若爐溫過低,馬卡龍表面看似烤熟了,但內部卻可能烤得不夠,出爐後馬卡龍便會收縮變成空心了。

8. Know your oven well and make adjustments as needed. With that said, there is no “one-size-fits-all” way of making macarons. For instance, I currently own two ovens of different sizes. My range oven has a hotter bottom element so I need to double stack my baking trays to keep the bottom of my shells from burning. My other newer, countertop oven doesn’t have this problem at all so I don’t need to do so. I have previously owned an oven that could not have the fan turned off and my macarons always came out like the Tower of Pisa! If your oven has hotspot (i.e. some shells are always cracked or browned in the same area), rotate your tray halfway for an even heating. If your shells brown too fast then cover the top with a piece of aluminum foil halfway through or at the end of the baking process. If you don’t want to cover your macarons with foil you may lower the temperature of the top element (provided that the top and bottom elements can be adjusted separately). Placing the baking tray on the lower rack of your oven yields the same result.
8. 要了解自己的焗爐並作出適當調整,馬卡龍沒有統一或萬用的製作秘笈,因此我們要執生(懂得變通)。舉個例子吧,EC家中有兩個不同大小的焗爐,大的那個連接着煮食爐,下火比較剛烈,因此EC要疊起兩個焗盆使用才能避免馬卡龍底部被烤焦,新購置的小型焗爐卻從沒這個問題,所以使用一個焗盆經已足夠,EC曾經擁有一個不能關掉熱風模式的焗爐,結果嘛,馬卡龍都烤得像比薩斜塔! 倘若焗爐熱力分怖不均勻有熱點(hot spot),即某些位置的馬卡龍總是出現龜裂或上色過深,那麽烤烘中途便要把焗盆位置轉一轉好讓馬卡龍平均受熱。至於馬卡龍上色過深的問題嘛,只要在烤烘中途或末段為馬卡龍蓋上一層錫紙便能輕易解決了!若不想蓋上鍚紙而焗爐上下火又可分別調整的話則可把上火調低一些,否則把焗盆放低一層亦可。

9. Check doneness by moving a shell slightly. If it doesn’t wiggle it is done. Remove the tray from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Once completely cooled, take the shells off the parchment paper or silicon mat. The shells should come off easily. It they stick to the paper or mat it means that they are underbaked.
9. 想知道馬卡龍烤熟與否可以嘗試輕碰馬卡龍,倘若馬卡龍挺身不會搖動即代表已熟,取出五分鐘後便可轉移到鋼架上,完全放涼後便可撕去牛油紙或矽膠墊,馬卡龍應可輕易取出,仍然黏著紙或墊則代表烤烘不足。

10. Filled macarons are not meant to be consumed immediately (yes I know it’s hard). Instead, let them rest or mature in the fridge for a day so that the filling and the shells can become one, making the inside chewy and gooey while leaving the outer shells crispy. Let the macarons come to room temperature, about 10 to 15 minutes, before serving.
10. 夾好餡的馬卡龍不宜馬上食用(對呀,要忍口哦!),要在雪櫃保存一天讓夾餡與外殼融為一體,馬卡龍才會變得外脆內軟,食用前把馬卡龍置室溫十至十五分鐘回溫便可。

I hope my tips and advice help!
盼望以上的分享對大家有幫助吧!
Happy Baking =)


 

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Mocha Macarons (Plus Lots of Tips)
Mocha馬卡龍(附製作心得分享)

makes about 24 to 26 sandwiched cookies
約24至26個份量

Ingredients

For the Mocha Macaron Shells

60 g egg whites (from about 2 large eggs, aged 1 to 3 days in the fridge)
25 g granulated sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
65 g ground almond
10 g Dutch-process or unsweetened cocoa powder
95 g icing sugar
1/2 tsp instant espresso powder

For the Chocolate Kahlúa Ganache

60 g premium dark chocolate, chopped
50 g whipping cream
6 g unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp Kahlúa (or to taste)

材料

Mocha馬卡龍外殼

蛋白 60克 (約兩個大蛋蛋白,放在雪櫃一至三天)
細砂糖 25克
他他粉 1/4茶匙
杏仁粉 65克
鹼化(Dutch-process)或無糖可可粉 10克
糖粉 95克
即溶特濃咖啡粉 1/2茶匙

Kahlúa朱古力夾餡

優質黑朱古力,切碎 60克
淡忌廉 50克
無鹽牛油,放軟 6克
Kahlúa咖啡酒 2茶匙(或依個人喜好)

Directions 做法

Line baking tray with parchment paper with a master template underneath.
焗盆內放圓形紙樣後墊上牛油紙備用。

In a food processor, process ground almond, icing sugar, cocoa powder and coffee powder until finely ground. Pass mixture through a sieve into a bowl and set aside.
用食物處理器將杏仁粉、糖粉、可可粉及咖啡粉打成幼滑粉末,過篩放入大碗中備用。

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By grinding the ground almond into a fine powder and getting rid of large lumps you will get macaron shells with a smoother surface. 將杏仁粉磨成幼細粉末去除大顆粒可令馬卡龍表面更平滑。
By grinding the ground almond into a fine powder and getting rid of large lumps you will get macaron shells with a smoother surface.
將杏仁粉磨成幼細粉末去除大顆粒可令馬卡龍表面更平滑。

Place egg whites in a clean mixing bowl. With an electric mixer, whip egg whites until frothy. Add cream of tartar (to stabilize the meringue) and continue to beat until soft peaks form. Add sugar and continue beating until firm peaks form. When you lift up the whisk, the meringue will stand straight up with a little curve at the tip.
蛋白放在乾淨的鋼盆中,用電動打蛋器打至泡沫變細密後加入他他粉(可令蛋白霜更穩定),打至蛋白霜成軟勾狀便將糖加入,繼續打至接近乾性發泡,拉起打蛋器蛋白霜尾部呈短小彎勾狀。

Fold meringue into the almond-flour mixture with a spatula in two additions. Knock some air out by pressing the batter around the sides of the bowl with the spatula a few times. Then begin to fold by scraping the batter from the bottom of the bowl and bringing it to the top. Keep folding until the batter forms a thick ribbon that slowly disappears into the batter. Undermixed batter will be pointy after piping and over-mixing will deflate the meringue, resulting in runny batter that loses its shape after piping.
蛋白霜分兩次加入杏仁粉混合物中,先以膠刮將麵糊往盆邊壓幾次壓破部份氣泡,再輕輕將麵糊從盆底往上翻,拌至麵糊落下時呈絲帶狀般緩慢流下並出現摺痕便可停止,麵糊若攪拌不足唧出來後會有尖角,攪拌過度則令蛋白霜消泡,麵糊會變稀,唧出來後麵糊會立刻往外瀉開。

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Scrape batter into a pastry bag fitted with a large round piping tip (I used Wilton #2A). Pipe out dollops of batter onto the prepared baking sheet using the template as a guide. When done piping, tap the baking tray against the counter a few times to eliminate any trapped air bubbles. Pop bubbles that haven’t risen up to the surface with a toothpick. Remove the template and let the shells stand at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes, depending on the weather and humidity, until the it is dry to the touch. While waiting, preheat the oven to 300ºF/150℃.
將麵糊倒進已備圓形花嘴的唧花袋中(EC用Wilton #2A花嘴),在牛油紙上依紙樣唧出圓形,將焗盆往枱上拍幾下震掉氣泡,如發現仍有氣泡可用牙籤刺破,取走底部紙樣,讓麵糊在室溫下靜置30至45分鐘至表面不黏手(視乎天氣及濕度),此時將焗爐預熱300℉/150℃。

Freshly piped macaron shells look shiny (left) and have to be rested until a skin forms on the surface. When they look dry and dull (right) they are ready for baking. 剛唧好的麵糊(左)色澤光亮並必須放至表面結皮,麵糊變乾及色澤轉為暗啞後(右)便可放進焗爐。
Freshly piped macaron shells look shiny (left) and have to be rested until a skin forms on the surface. When they look dry and dull (right) they are ready for baking.
剛唧好的麵糊(左)色澤光亮並必須放至表面結皮,麵糊變乾及色澤轉為暗啞後(右)便可放進焗爐。

 

I rested mine for about 30 minutes yesterday. EC昨天大約花了30分鐘風乾馬卡龍。
I rested mine for about 30 minutes yesterday.
EC昨天大約花了30分鐘風乾馬卡龍。

Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until set without browning. If you touch the shell and it feels firm and doesn’t wiggle it is done. Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack before filling.
焗12至14分鐘,以手指輕碰馬卡龍,若馬卡龍挺身不會搖動即代表已熟可以取出,在鋼架上完全放涼後可唧上夾餡。

How my macarons rose in my oven.
馬卡龍在焗爐內的狀况。

 

The interior of my macaron shell.
馬卡龍內部組織

To make the filling, heat whipping cream in a saucepan over medium-low heat until it bubbles around the edges (but not boiling). Alternatively, microwave cream in a microwave-safe bowl on high. Add to chopped chocolate and let stand for two minutes. Stir with a spatula until combined. Stir in softened butter until smooth and shiny. Add Kahlúa and mix until incorporated. Fill pastry bag with ganache then chill in the fridge until it feels firm enough for piping.
夾餡做法:將淡忌廉倒入小鍋中小火煮至邊緣冒泡後(用微波爐加熱亦可) 撞入朱古力碎中,靜置兩分鐘後以膠刮攪拌至朱古力完全融化,加入放軟牛油拌至順滑有光澤,最後加入Kahlúa咖啡酒拌勻,倒入唧袋中,冷藏至適合唧花的軟硬度取出。

To assemble the macarons, pair up shells of similar sizes. Pipe out dollop of filling on the flat side of a shell then top with the other one, flat side down. Store filled macarons in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a day to mature them. Bring to room temperature, about 15 minutes, before serving.
配對形狀相若的馬卡龍,把夾餡唧在其中一塊外殼上(底部朝上),蓋上另一塊外殼(底部朝下),完成所有馬卡龍後放在密封盒中於雪櫃保存一天後可食用,食用前把馬卡龍置室溫15分鐘回溫便可。

It is hard to pipe the shells all with the exact size (come on we are just humans). As long as you help each shell to find its marching better half, nobody is going to notice that!
將所有馬卡龍弄得一樣大小是很困難的(我們是人不是機器唷!),只要為馬卡龍找到跟它門當戶對的另一半便行了!

 

I jazzed up my macarons with melted white chocolate and some sprinkles.
EC用融化白朱古力及糖珠為馬卡龍打扮一番。

 

If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.
版權所有,如需引用,請註明出處

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