Red Velvet Macarons

Friday, 31 January 2014

If you’ve been reading this blog since the baby years of its existence, you might be aware of my humiliating macaron attempts in the past. 

Macarons are the sweet, sweet confection that I’ve posted on here regardless of their success. I’ve even tried to educate the internet on how not to make macarons. I am that confident in my mistakes. 

This is why there is a grand total of five macarons in these pictures. The other 15 were cracked, Mr Blobby shaped and had missing limbs (no “feet"). 

The macaron ship had sailed, people.  
It gets worse. Last week, I completely forgot about how terrible I was at “macoranage.” I forgot so badly, that I agreed to try and match a boutique’s red velvet macaron! 
Macarons from L'orchidee in Westfield Stratford
Naturally, the macarons at L’orchidee were exactly what you’d expect: each told its own tale. Even though they’re made in continuous batches 3 days a week, not one was the same. Which I think is just the way it should be, none of this precision and uniformity, especially since so many of us have so much trouble making them at home. 


So here is my attempt to out-do L’orchidee’s red velvet macaron for Westfield Stratford City’s We Are Dining campaign. This month, Westfield Stratford City is showcasing their diverse array of eateries, and they're giving lots of offers to customers in this nifty little booklet which you can download here. 

I am usually disappointed by the vast selection of same-y food chains you find in shopping centres. But Australian company, Westfield, do things a little differently. They have whole sections dedicated to certain cuisines. For example, a 'World Food Court' where the busiest fast food restaurants are the ones serving up sushi, falafel and ribs, and the same goes for their 'Fast Food Court.'

Personally, I don’t think my attempt at red velvet macarons even slightly match up to L'orchidee's. But it was nice to see what else The Great Eastern Market had to offer, besides beautiful Baklava and gorgeously scented roasted nuts.

If you live in London, you're never too far away from a Westfield shopping centre. Go east for Westfield Stratford City, or west for Westfield London in Shepherds Bush. You can also pick up the offers booklet at the concierge desks in both branches! 


Adapted from Cake Journal 

100g ground almonds
105g egg whites
193g icing sugar
7g cocoa powder
45g caster sugar
Few drops red food colouring
Filling
100g cream cheese
250g icing sugar
1 tsp lemon juice

Method

Line 2 baking sheets. Place the ground almonds and icing sugar and cocoa powder in a food processor and whiz for 30 seconds. Sieve the mixture into a bowl and discard the little almond lumps.

Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add the sugar a tablespoon a time whilst continuing to whisk, until you get a glossy mixture. Add the food colouring at this stage.

Carefully and slowly fold the almonds into the meringue bit by bit. Try not to over mix! The mixture should not be too thick or thin, but somewhere in the middle.

Add the mixture to a piping bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe small rounds (from directly above) and space them an inch apart. Tap the baking sheets against your worktop to release air bubbles. Leave to stand for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C. Bake for 12 minutes then leave to cool.

Beat cream cheese until smooth, add icing sugar and lemon juice. Place in a piping bag and pipe a small dollop on top of half of the macarons. Gently place the second half on top. Store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Are you terrible at making macarons too? 
Love Em

20 comments:

  1. Hi Em, I absolutely adore your blog. The best out there! I have yet to find the perfect carrot cake recipe but I trust your baking to try the spicey carrot and walnut cake this evening. I just have a few questions. What size tin did you use? I have a fan oven so should I drop the 170 temp? Finally! as I know my otherhalf isnt into overy spicey to I reduce the cinnamon and what would be the normal amount. Sorry for all the questions! Baking cookies later too so off to that section on your blog now.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Lily! Thank you :) The spicy carrot cake, which I made for my bro inlaw was by far my fave ever carrot cake that I've ever made! I used an 8 inch round tin for that cake. And I have a fan oven as well, I should really state on here that that temp is in fact for fan ovens...So no need to drop the temp!! And of course you can reduce the cinnamon! I would use 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon, to counterbalance with the rest of the spices :) Which cookies are you thinking?

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    2. Thank so much for the quick reply and I saw afterwards you had the tin size listed - doh! Ok re cookies I can't decide which ones. However I love crunchy/oaty/chocolate/peanut butter so any of those works. Any suggestions?

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    3. Kathryn from London Bakes has recently posted an oaty chocolate nib cookie! It looks delicious, deffo have a look at that. You could sub the coconut oil she uses for butter.

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  2. Replies
    1. No problem! Let me know how it goes with the cake later on tonight!

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  3. I am in awe of your macarons. Failed? please. They look like they are to die for. I will even eat the cracked ones. I am terrified to make them so I don't even know if I suck at them, but let's assume I do :)

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    1. But you are the cookie queen, how have you not made them?!

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  4. Your macarons came out fantastically! Feet and all :-)

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    1. Thank you!! My feet are stubby, to be fair !

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  5. amazing! beautiful food photography

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  6. i would so gobble these up!

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  7. oh my goodness these macaroons look amazing! i attempted to make macaroons with my sister but they ended up horribly, it was a macaroon mess haha!
    www.marylee31.blogspot.com
    x

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  8. I absolutely do. They are my complete nemesis. I haven't revisited them for some time after being so traumatized and discovering Ladauree now have a few branches in London! PS: Your photo looks absolutely mouthwatering

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    1. Kate, I feel exactly the same. But after, say, TEN goes and loads of many wasted, you eventually start to get at least 5 uncracked macarons in each batch! Optimistic, right?

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  9. They have feet and aren't cracked so not a failure at all. I must be stupid or living in a cave but I didn't know red velvet macarons were possible!

    I've only made macarons once and they were sort-of presentable (well, the second batch were!) Too scared to tackle them again as I have been failing at even basic baking lately!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Jo!
      Yes, I actually wasnt aware of red velvet macarons until I was told... I was afraid adding the cocoa powder would ruin the mixture, luckily, it only ruined two thirds of it :)
      I'm sure you havent been failing! x

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  10. Rochelle Hutchinson6 February 2014 at 22:04

    I used to be scared of macaron making. Now not so much. Yours look tasty! I use the Italian meringue method and fold ALL the meringue into the mixture at once. I'm not confident but not soo scared. The only bit I hate is sifting the almonds!

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  11. This article is very helpful thank you very much for sharing .

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  12. Hi Rochelle! Macarons are just so hard to nail down, and these just look delicious.

    I'd love to invite you to submit your candidature for our upcoming blogger event, Paris Food Trip. We are looking for one UK or Irish blogger to come to Paris for a weekend of culinary fun!

    Just answer the question, "What recipe would you like to cook in Paris and why?" I will leave you with the link: http://www.gourmandize.co.uk/article-37-the-paris-food-trip-2014-challenge.htm

    All the best,
    Jill

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