- For the base
- 300 g ground almonds
- 300 g icing sugar
- 110 g egg whites (about 3 eggs)
- food colouring of your choice
- For the Italian meringue and sugar syrup
- 110 g egg whites
- 330 g caster sugar
- 100 ml water
Preheat the oven to 140°C and line 3 large baking trays with baking paper.
To make the base, sift almond flour and icing sugar three times through a fine sieve and adjust the weight so that you have a total of 600 g.
Mix in the egg whites and add food colourant or flavourant. (This is from about 3 eggs, but it is vital that you weigh it out.)
To make the Italian meringue, using an electric beater whisk 110 g egg whites until foamy. Add the 30g castor sugar
To make the sugar syrup, in a medium saucepan heat the 300 g castor sugar and water to 113°C and pour in a thin stream into the lightly whipped egg whites. Whisk until completely cool.
Fold the italian meringue into the almond mixture until you achieve a 'sea creature' consistency - it should be sagging and 'relaxed', like molten lava. It takes about 40 turns using a rubber spatula and is called 'macaronage' which essentially means knocking the air out of the egg whites.
Scoop mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 8-mm and pipe onto the lined baking trays.
Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and leave to cool completely.
Cook's notes: Pipe a filling of your choice, such as chocolate ganache, on one shell and sandwich with another. You can also use cream cheese mixed with berries, lemon curd or salted caramel or a simple butter filling made with 100 g soft butter mixed with 5 T caster sugar and optional food colouring and flavourings. Click here for more filling ideas from Abigail's French macarons article.
For flavourings, you can add a teaspoon of pistachio paste, or, for a coffee flavour, dissolve 1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder in 1/2 teaspoon warm water.
This recipe for classic Italian macarons was created by TASTE expert contributor, Chef Monché Muller. Read up on all her tips and tricks for perfecting Italian macarons (aka macaroons!).