Monday, March 24, 2014

French Macarons:: Part Un

1st Batch..EEK! 
 You may find this strange but I had NEVER tried a macaroon until this year! Oui! I always thought French macarons were pretty and tres chic. Too chic for me. I mean am still not sure if you spell it Macaroon or macaron? I just figured these french cookies couldn't live up to the hype and never tried one. Boy, was I wrong…Macarons are amazing! They aren't like any other baked good. I was hooked! 
I wanted to try making them at home. I figured I can bake French Madelines why not macarons? My first attempt was an epic fail! I did SO many things wrong. 
  • I found the recipe and video online. I watched the video a few times on silence while reading the subtitles. I didn't realize the baker was Australian so the temperature of her oven was in celsius NOT fahrenheit. I thought 150 was a really low temperature to bake but who am I to judge? 
  • I used wax paper and I should have used parchment paper. The wax paper started smoking (once I brought the oven's temp to 300).
  • Almond flour is hard to find at the super market and it is hard to make without a food processor.  
  • I think I over folded.

 Batch A I didn't slam the cookie sheet hard enough on the table before putting them in the oven. Batch B is looking better but I baked them at the wrong temp! They were raw on the inside and brunt on the bottom. None were edible. These macarons made me feel like such a failure! However it is good to be reminded no one is perfect. (It felt like I was making humble pie) I am not giving up I just need to study a little more. Forget the internet, I ordered some books from the library. I went to Costco and got more eggs so I can start practicing.
These are NOT mine…A girl can dream. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I Always Loved You

 I won an advance copy of the novel I Always Loved You from It is about Mary Cassatt, an American painter in Paris and her relationship with artist Edgar Degas. I enjoyed this novel. It is historical fiction at it's finest. I had to be near a computer while I was reading because I kept googling the paintings the Author would refer to.

 While reading I Always Loved You I found this app called Waterlogue. It turns your pictures into vibrant watercolors! The book describes the painstaking task of creating a painting and now there is an app for that.