Tips For Piping Macarons
- Twist end of pastry bag closed tightly and hold it with both hands.
- Pipe quarter-sized mounds away from you at a 45-degree angle. Stop squeezing bag and flick tip up counterclockwise; “tail” will settle into batter.
Tips for Successful Macarons
- For the best results, bake macarons on silicone baking mats or Teflon-coated paper; they help produce a taller, more defined “foot.” Macaron batter can stick to parchment paper, inhibiting the rise.
- This is one recipe where you must weigh your ingredients—precision is key.
- If your almond flour has an oily feel to it, spread it out on a sheet pan, dry it out in a 225°F oven for 10 or 15 minutes, and then let cool before you use it; otherwise your macarons will be gummy.
- Remember not to overwhip your meringue. It should be firm and glossy but not dry.
- Use only water-based food coloring to tint the cookies—the inexpensive squeeze bottles with pointy caps are fine. Oil-base or paste colors can break the meringue.
- Once the macarons are piped, they need to dry out and form a crust so they will have a crunchy yet soft texture when you bite into them. Don’t skip this step.
- Macarons can be filled layered with a number of fillings—jam, buttercream, ganache, thick nut pastes (praline), or even just peanut or almond butter.
- Whatever filling you choose, though, must be thick enough to sandwich between cookies without dripping out. Typically I will color the cookies to match the filling flavor. Plain macarons can be tinted pink and filled with raspberry-mint Jam or plain vanilla buttercream. Tint your macarons yellow or orange and fill them with a citrus vanilla buttercream.
- Pipe the filling with a small pastry bag or resealable plastic food bag onto one cookie before sandwiching another cookie (bottom to bottom) on top. I also like to sprinkle very finely chopped nuts on the cookies the moment they are piped if I am filling them with a nut-flavored filling.