Before you start, get all of the ingredients ready. Prepare a large piping bag, fitted with a large round tip, I use a 05." tip. Set aside.
Measure out all of the ingredients.
Sift the powdered sugar and almond flour together. Set aside.
Place the egg whites and granulated sugar in a heat proof bowl or in a double boiler. Over a pan of simmering water, whisk the whites and sugar until frothy and sugar completely melted. It will take a couple minutes. You can test by touching the mixture between your fingers, and if you feel any sugar granules just keep whisking mixture over the water bath.
Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer.
With the whisk attachment, start whisking the mixture on low for about 30 seconds, then gradually start increasing speed to medium. Whisk on medium for one to two minutes, until mixture is white and starting to become fluffy. Raise speed to medium-high and finish whipping for a few more minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Best way to check this is to keep your eye on the whites. Once they get glossy and you start seeing streaks formed by the whisk, it might be time to stop.
Whisk until stiff peaks have formed. When you pull your whip up, the peaks should be shooting straight up, not bent down.
Pour the sifted powdered sugar and almond flour into stiff whites.
If you are dying the batter in just one color, this is the time to add any food coloring. In the case of these Blood Orange Macarons, I used two different colors, so please read below about how to achieve the two-color shells.
Fold the dry ingredients with the meringue until just incorporated. Once you can see no more streaks of dry ingredients in the batter, separate it into two different bowls.
Cover one bowl with a towel so the batter doesn’t start drying, and work with one batch at a time. I added red food coloring with a touch of crimson to the batter and folded until it was at the right consistency. Read below on tips for identifying the right consistency.
Then, transfer this batter to a piping bag, secure the top so the batter doesn’t leak out, and set it aside.
Next, Next, it’s time to color the remaining batter. I used orange food coloring for the second batter. Fold until the proper consistency is achieved, and transfer the batter to another piping bag.
How to know when to stop folding the batter: It’s time to stop folding when the batter is glossy and has a thick and flowing consistency. There are several ways to test this.
First, pick up some batter with the spatula and try to draw a figure 8 with the batter that is dripping off the spatula. If you can form several 8 figures without the batter breaking up, that’s one indication that it might be ready.
If the batter stays stiff, forming a point and doesn’t spread out a bit, start folding a little bit more, about 3 folds.
Once the batter spreads out a bit and starts to look glossy and smooth on top, on the baking sheet, transfer it to the piping bag.
You don’t want the batter to be too runny either. So be careful not to over mix. It’s always best to under mix and test several times until the proper consistency has been achieved.
The best way I can describe this stage being perfect is when you hold the spatula with batter on top of the bowl and the batter falls off the spatula slowly but effortlessly. The batter will keep flowing off the spatula non-stop, but not too quickly.
So, when both batters were ready and inside piping bags, snip the end of the piping bags with scissors, and placed both piping bags in the piping bag fitted with the large round tip.
Place the piping bag containing both batters directly 90 degrees over the center of each macaron template. Apply gentle pressure and carefully pipe for about 3 seconds, and then quickly pull the bag up twisting slightly.
Once you’ve piped as many circles as you could, bang the trays against the counter a few times each.
Let the trays sit for a while so the shells will dry out a little bit. I usually leave about 20-40 minutes, depending on how humid the day is. You’ll know they’re ready when you gently touch the surface of a macaron and it seems dry.
Pre-heat the oven to 325ºF.
Bake one tray at a time.
Bake for 5 minutes, rotate tray.
I bake each tray for 15 to 18 minutes minutes.
When baked, the macarons will have a deeper color and formed feet. If you try to move a macaron, it shouldn’t feel jiggly. If the macaron is still jiggly, keep baking.
Lemon Juice: Feel free to skip the lemon juice, I just use it to accent the citrus taste in the curd. I also added a bit of lemon zest. However, as I was testing the recipe for Blood Orange Curd, I’ve also made it without the lemon juice and lemon zest, and it turned out just as delicious. I just wanted to emphasize the citrus taste.
Food coloring: Make sure to use gel food coloring. If you are a beginner macaron baker, I recommend going easy on the food coloring, as it can alter your batter a lot, and it can take extra mixing time, specially if you continue to add the food coloring as you do the macaronage.
Scale: Please use a scale when measuring the ingredients for accuracy.
Macaron amount: it will vary greatly depending on how big you pipe the shells, and on how runny or thick the batter is.
Baking time/temperature: Baking time and temperature will vary according to your own oven. I recommend experimenting with your oven to find out the best time, temperature, position of the baking tray.
Oven thermometer: Make sure to have an oven thermometer to bake macarons. It’s one of the most important things about making macarons. Home ovens aren’t accurate at all at telling the temperature, and even a slight 5 degree difference can make or break your whole batch.
Tray rotation: Lots of bakers don’t have to rotate the trays 180 degrees in the oven every 5 minutes, but I do have to with my oven, or I will get lopsided macarons. Please adjust this according to your oven.