Ever wonder what’s in those little bundles of heaven everyone calls French macarons? Personally, the idea of making French macarons had always seemed intimidating to me because they come off as being so fancy and delicate. But believe it or not, after learning the ropes of macaron-making from Chef Todd Parkhurst, a pastry chef (and my boss), I have come to realize the recipe he developed is fairly simple.
After attending Michigan State University, Chef Todd pursued a degree from the Culinary Institute of America and has been actively working as pastry chef ever since. For the past 13 years and counting, he has doubled as a pastry chef for Fresh Gatherings Cafe and a professor at Saint Louis University. His witty personality, dedication to serving his students, and unshakable love for his dog, Bentley, never fail to lift me up on my early Monday morning bakery shift. Though I go to school full time, I always make time in my schedule to work in the bakery with Chef Todd.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 35 mins
- Servings: 12
- 5 oz. Almond Flour
- 3/4 oz. Cornstarch
- 2 T Rice Flour
- 8 1/2 oz. Powdered Sugar
- 5 1/2 oz. Egg Whites
- Pinch Cream Tartar or lemon juice/white vinegar
- 3 3/4 oz. Sugar
- 3 Drops Food Coloring
Sift cornstarch, rice flour, and powdered sugar. Then add pistachio flour.
Separately in a mixer, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until it’s a snow consistency. (Cream of tartar can be substituted with lemon juice or white vinegar.) Slowly add 3 3/4 oz. of sugar while whipping as you add. Transfer meringue into a mixing bowl.
Add food color of your choice (I personally like bright blue) and gently mix in the dry ingredients. Be careful not to overmix.
Fill a piping bag with the mix. If you don’t have one, you can use a ziplock bag by cutting a small hole in the corner. Squeeze the batter out into small circles on a sheet pan covered in parchment paper.
Let the sheets air dry for 10-15 minutes. Bake them at 280° for about 15 minutes. Watch them as they bake to make sure they don’t start browning.
When they are finished baking, you may want to leave them in the oven (now turned off) to set for a few more minutes. Continue to keep an eye on them.
Once you’ve removed the sheets from the oven and allowed them to cool, it’s time to get creative! Using two circle tops and the filling of your choice, make a little sandwich, with the two circles acting as the “bread.” When I made them, I used a chocolate raspberry ganache for a few and raspberry preserves for the others. But you can pretty much do whatever you want! (A ganache consists of chocolate, cream, and butter…super easy!)
This tasty dessert seemed intimidating to me at first. But after Chef Todd taught me this recipe, I was comfortable making it on my own. If you’re making them at home, you may need to take a quick trip to the grocery store for a few ingredients, but you’ll thank yourself when these dainty little treats are ready to come out of the oven. Et voila! You now have some fresh n’ fancy French macarons to show off and enjoy with friends!
(Note: This article was written 100% by me, Georgia. However I first published it as a Spoon University article.)