French macarons are light and delicious comprising mainly of three ingredients: almond flour, sugar, and egg whites. But baking them is not so simple. Here are some observations on the process of making macarons and taking up far too much of my parents' kitchen space.

  • Don’t use American cup measurements — use a measuring scale.
  • Following the importance of precise measurements, use an oven thermometer to make sure the temperature is exact.
  • Sift all dry foods — the flour, the sugar.
  • The almond flour needs to be fine. Like, really fine. I’ve found that blitzing them in the food processor just to make sure works OK.
  • The egg whites should be aged (separate and leave for a day or so) and at room temperature.
  • For colours, use food gel, not regular food colouring.
  • No overbeating and no overfolding.
  • You need to fold not whisk or mix. Don’t rush the folds either. Be slow, slow, slower — extreme gentleness! Count the folds too. (After making a bunch of batches, I found that forty folds works for me.)
  • After piping the mixture onto the tray, I tap it gently 2-3 times to move any air bubbles to the top.
  • It’s important to let the macarons sit on the tray — after you pipe them, before you put them in the oven — for at least 40 minutes — they will develop a little outer skin that are a little dry to touch. But don’t let them sit out too long.