I always claim that Paris is the pinnacle of my travel dreams. I grew up in Manila where I didn’t have much growing up. I was never able to travel until I was in my twenties after I’ve started working, and even then, money didn’t just gush out of the faucet. So to have the auspices to have visited every year in the last three years has been surreal.

I always claim that Paris is the pinnacle of my travel dreams. I grew up in Manila where I didn’t have much growing up. I was never able to travel until I was in my twenties after I’ve started working, and even then, money didn’t just gush out of the faucet. So to have the auspices to have visited every year in the last three years has been surreal.

There is nothing in the world quite like Paris. It will be one of the most elegant, enigmatic, and captivating cities I will ever see in my lifetime. Of that I am certain of. And the snobbery and arrogance of French cuisine compounds its appeal, its untouchable quality, its enigma.

Macarons exploded as the it food (of tourists) in Paris and while visiting in 2012, I skipped the lines at Pierre Herme and Laduree in deference to DIY macarons. I learned how to make Parisian macarons at the La Cuisine Paris Culinary School in the hopes that whenever I feel like it, I could always have a piece of Paris right at home. And it worked! So whether you have already been or you’re still jonesing on Paris, here’s that macaron recipe I learned so you too could have a taste of Paris at home.

But a word of caution. Making macarons involves some level of baking technique and it would take at least two hours. There is that risk that your first (or second) time won’t be perfect.

French Macarons with Chocolate Ganache

Here’s what you need:

Kitchen tools A weighing scale A thermometer An electric mixer Parchment paper, but at the cooking class, we were advised that silicone baking sheets work better

Ingredients

Dark Chocolate Ganache 150 grams heavy whipping cream 150 grams dark chocolate nibs (at least 64% cocoa content) 53 grams butter at room temperature, cubed Macaron batter 250 grams almond meal (finely ground almonds, sifted) 250 grams powdered sugar 92 grams egg whites Gel food coloring (optional)

Italian Meringue 250 grams sugar 62 grams water 92 grams egg whites, left out at room temperature

Method
Make the dark chocolate ganache first.

1. In a small saucepan, bring heavy cream to boil.
2. Have your dark chocolate nibs in a bowl. Pour hot cream on the dark chocolate nibs a portion at a time, until thoroughly combined.
3. Add butter a portion a time and with a spatula, mix thoroughly.
4. Fill a piping bag with the ganache and refrigerate for 40 minutes. Work on the macaron batter next.

1. Combine almond meal and sugar in a mixing bowl.
2. Add egg whites and with a wooden spoon, mix well. You will surprisingly need a lot of muscle for this step.
3. Add gel food coloring, if using. Make sure that the batter is tinged a deep color if you want colorful macarons. I personally am phobic of artificial flavors and colorings so I made mine on the minimalist side.

Now, roll your sleeves up for the Italian meringue.
1. Bring sugar and water to boil until it reaches 114 degrees Celsius.
2. While waiting, prepare your electric mixer. You should be ready to start slowly beating the egg whites with your mixer when the sugar on the stove reaches 114 degrees.
3. When sugar mixtures reaches 118 degrees, turn off heat. The egg whites on the mixer should be achieving a soft, silky texture by the time the sugar mixture reaches this temperature.
4. Crank up the speed of your mixer a bit and begin spooning the hot sugar mixture into the egg whites slowly, one spoonful at a time. Keep mixing until you get stiff peaks with your egg whites.
5. Carefully fold the egg whites into the almond mixture, a bit at a time. 6. Fill a piping bag with a 10mm tip. You are ready to pipe them into the silicone mat or baking tray lined with parchment paper. Let the macarons rest for about 20 minutes. Also now would be a good time to get your ganache out of the fridge.

7. Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius. When the macarons have rested for 20 minutes, pop them in the oven for about 12 minutes. Let them cool down. Macarons should come off easily from the parchment paper or silicone mat when done.

8. Arrange macaron shells in a row smooth side facing up. Pipe the ganache left to right and pair them up. Now that you are initiated into the complicated process of making these delicate, beautiful things, the only problem left is how to stop eating them.

Read more of my Paris-related articles here or check out my IG account: docartwheelswithme

Enjoy!

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