I did it. I finally tried my hand at french dark chocolate macarons. I've been reading David Lebovitz's blog and found a chocolate macaron recipe that I had to try (please click the link for the full recipe and techniques). I must admit, mine didn't turn out as pretty as Davids but they were so delicious. The crunchy and chewy texture of the macaron and the rich dark chocolate filling was amazing. I now understand why these little treats were so darn popular. This particular recipe had some great tips on how to make the perfect macarons. And I have a confession, I failed the first time and made a second batch right away. Mine had these horrible cracks. Even with the second batch! There were only a few that were decent. Probably because I didn't let it sit for an hour or so or use double cookie sheets. But they were delicious, just not so pretty.
David's recipe stated that the oven should be at 350º degrees. But after seeing those ugly cracks on my macarons for the second time, and reading other blogs, I suggest lowering the temperature to 300º degrees and baking for 10-15 minutes (and checking to see if they are done). I think that everyones oven is different so when you're making these, you'll have to experiment. Over folding or not whipping the egg whites enough will also result in epic failure.
A great tip from David with regards to filling the pastry bag is to place the bag in a tall glass to fill it with the batter. Genius and mess free.
He also suggested rapping the the baking sheet hard on the countertop to flatten the batter before baking. Another important tip is to allow the piped macaron to sit for 2 hours before baking them.
I am determined to make the perfect macarons. But in the meantime, I wanted to share my first macaron experience with all of you. David stated that it took him seven tries to finally get the results he was looking for. I'm not looking forward to the number of attempts I must execute before getting the result I want. But what I am looking forward to is the day when my macarons come out perfectly smooth with perfect feet. Please read David Lebovitz's recipe for the chocolate macaron recipe and give it a try! Happy baking my foodie friends!