Delicate and delicious, French Macarons are really very special. I think Eggnog Macarons could be the perfect elegant addition to your holiday table, or you can box them up and give them as gifts.
People go absolutely gaga over French macarons. Over the course of the 10 years I was running my wedding cake business I watched the wave of French macaron popularity swell. Hoping to ride the wave I started selling macarons as wedding favors and for dessert-table displays. I often had to make 200-300 cookies per order, which means baking 400-600 shells. Because my commercial kitchen only had a powerful convection oven it took some trial and error to get a system down to produce those delicate little bites.
What took me so long?
So why I haven’t I posted a recipe for French Macarons before now? Well, I knew posting a macaron recipe would involve quite a bit of explanation and detailed description because there are no shortcuts to the perfect macaron. Even experienced bakers can have trouble with the admittedly finicky cookies. I’ve given detailed instructions, but you may find that things work slightly differently in your own kitchen.
Even when making the Eggnog Macarons for this post I ran into a few problems. First, I had to scale down my recipe to a manageable size for a home kitchen. When I baked the first batch in my home oven they browned way too fast and cracked. Turns out the oven in my house is running about 25°-50°F too hot. Who knew? Most baked goods can take a temperature variation, but it took these fussy cookies to make me check the calibration of my oven.
Anyway, once I got the oven sorted out I was back in business. So that brings us back to these delicious Eggnog Macarons. Both the shells and buttercream filling have classic eggnog flavorings. My buttercream filling is a mix of butter and the almond flour base. I originally got the idea for the filling from an old French cookie book and I love it because it’s not very sweet and has a great texture.
Important Steps for Macaron Success:
After making literally thousands of macarons I’ve keyed in on the steps that are necessary for the most perfect cookies.
- Age the egg whites. This is the first and most important step. I’ve tried making macaron shells with freshly separated egg whites and I got cookies with ugly, lumpy shells. Remember, macarons are all about that perfectly smooth and satiny shell.
- Weigh your ingredients. Volume measures are not precise enough for this recipe.
- Grind the almond flour & sugar. It may seem redundant since the almond flour is already ground, but I’ve found that the extra step makes for a smoother shell in the end. I’m guessing it has something to do with the almonds absorbing some of the sugar, but whatever it is, don’t skip that step.
- Sift the almond flour and sugar after processing it. Again, this will eliminate any lumps of sugar or large bits of almond that might mar the texture of the cookies and will also evenly distribute the spices.
- Fold the batter until it’s smooth and shiny. Either under or over folding the batter will result in wonky shells. I’ve found it’s easier to under fold than over fold. Check out the slideshow below to see photos of the perfect batter texture.
- Let the shells dry for 30 minutes before baking. This will set the top and help create the iconic “foot” of a perfect macaron.
- Refrigerate the assembled cookies before serving. A night in a covered container in the refrigerator will help the cookies absorb some moisture from the filling and for the flavors to meld.
- You can freeze macarons for several weeks after they’re assembled, making them the perfect make-ahead dessert or gift.
I’ve put together a slideshow so you can see the important steps for making successful macarons. Click on the right arrow to view the photos in order.
Will you get edible macarons if you don’t follow all these steps? Sure, they’ll be edible, but why go through all that trouble for an ordinary cookie? Take the time to create something really special to share with your loved ones this holiday season.
Can’t get enough eggnog? Me neither! Check out all these fabulous ways to get your eggnog fix. A special thanks to Christie from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventure to hosting again.
- Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake by Bottom Left of Mitten
- Chocolate Eggnog Poke Cake by Crazed Mom
- Eggnog Bread Pudding with Warm Whiskey Sauce by The Crumby Cupcake
- Eggnog Macarons by Baking Sense
- Eggnog Macaroons by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Eggnog Pie by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Gingerbread Bars with Eggnog Frosting by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Layered Gingerbread Cake with Eggnog Frosting by The Freshman Cook
- Mini Eggnog Cheesecakes by Authentically Candace
- Coconut Milk Eggnog by A Mind “Full” Mom
- Eggnog Coffee Frappe by And She Cooks
- Gingerbread Eggnog Latte by Palatable Pastime
- Spiked Eggnog Hot White Cocoa by The Weekend Gourmet
- Traditional Homemade Eggnog by The Redhead Baker
Breakfast and Breakfast Pastries
- Baked Eggnog Donuts by Life Tastes Good
- Coconut Eggnog Overnight Oats (with homemade eggnog) by Caroline’s Cooking
- Cranberry Eggnog Scones by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Eggnog Pancakes with Cranberry Syrup by Sew You Think You Can Cook
- Eggnog Scones by Feeding Big
- Craig Claiborne’s Eggnog Mousse by Food Lust People Love
- Easy Eggnog Fudge by Sunday Supper Movement
- Eggnog Crème Anglaise by The Wimpy Vegetarian
- Eggnog Panna Cotta with Cinnamon Whipped Cream by Tramplingrose
- Eggnog Pudding Parfaits by Pies and Plots
- Healthy Eggnog Rice Pudding by Cricket’s Confections
- Homemade Eggnog Ice Cream by Simple and Savory
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