Tuesday, February 28, 2017


It has been over a year that I posted last. The year 2016 was a busy year with moving from Lome to  home and again back to Qatar. The whole year went past in a buzz around my head. I began to relax so much that it became habit.
My daughter kept pushing me to keep this space active so much so that she even sent pictures of what she had cooked and further on recipes. she would write it up and tell me all it takes to copy from mail and hit the publish button. I just did not.
She is now visiting us in Doha and has finally succeeded in her mission to get me started back.
From my earlier posts readers may have understood that I do not use eggs in my cooking. I have relished cakes and such, only I am not happy to try handling eggs. I am certain to be a failure with baking with eggs.
This post is my daughter's success in baking macarons, pictures and the recipe below are hers.
She had tried the recipe from the link given here, stopping short at not making sandwich macarons.


Yields: approx. 35 shells (slightly bigger than the original resipe) or about 17 sandwiches

  • Icing sugar - 150g (5½oz)
  • Ground almonds - 75g (2¾oz)
  • Egg whites - 2 large
  • pinch of salt
  • Caster sugar - 35g (1¼oz)
  • Cardamom powder - a hefty pinch
  • pink, green, yellow or lilac food colouring paste (optional)
  •  Preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F and line two solid baking-sheets with non-stick baking-parchment.
  • Sift together the almond powder, cardamom powder and icing sugar into a bowl.
  • Place the egg whites in the metal bowl of a stand mixer (or a large metal mixing bowl, if using a hand mixer) and whisk on high speed till soft peaks are formed.
  • Add the caster sugar, a teaspoon at a time, whisking well after each addition. Continue whisking until the mixture is stiff and glossy.
  • Fold in the sifted dry ingredients, using a large metal spoon, taking care to not deflate the meringue. Fold till everything is just combined - do not overmix.
  • Fit a piping bag with a 1cm (½in) plain nozzle. Stick the parchment down on the corners using a little bit of the meringue to prevent it from rolling up or flapping around. Pipe 5cm (2in) discs on to the baking-parchment.
  • Dampen the tip of your finger and gently flatten the top of any macarons that are peaky, then give the tray a sharp tap on the work surface to knock out air bubbles. 
  • Allow the meringues to rest for about half an hour, then bake in the preheated oven for about 9 to 10 minutes.  
  • Cool the macarons on a wire rack. Once completely cool, these can be filled with buttercream, ganache or jam, and sandwiched.
Some notes that she shared with me on her mail:

Make sure, when separating the eggs, to not get any of the yolk in with the whites, as the fat messes up the meringue pretty badly. With the egg whites, I beat them with my hand mixer itself.. make sure to use a steel bowl, not a plastic one - plastic tends to have a film that inhibits the development of the meringue. The same with the folding in process... use a metal spoon, and fold gently, so as to not break up the air we built into the egg whites.
Before the addition of sugar, the egg whites are whipped to soft peak stage. It is a bit hard to tell, because the peaks are tiny. But, when the egg whites begin to look like a fluffy floating cloud, start adding the sugar.. and when it is finally done, you should be able to pick up a big dollop on the metal spoon, flip it upside down and not have it fall back down into the bowl. At this stage, you can fold in the sifted almond powder and icing sugar.. definitely sift this mixture, my icing sugar had little limps in it and the sifting really helped to make the mix less grainy.