What girl doesn’t have a slight obsession with macarons? They’re quite a finicky little cookie, but they are just so cute! So on a cloudy Sunday afternoon, I got together with Meredith and Beth and we tried our hand at making a batch. Meredith found the recipe that we went by in the May 2014 issue of FOOD Network Magazine. You can find it here. Instead of making our entire batch one flavor, we split it into three: Raspberry Almond, Blueberry Cheesecake, and Lemon Vanilla. When we split the batter, I ended up in charge of the Lemon Vanilla. Here’s what I learned: For vibrant color, we needed to add a bit more food coloring than the recipe called for. I almost doubled the drops of yellow that I added to my macaron batter and they still came out a little more pale than I hoped. Using a Silpat is important. I noticed that the cookies baked using the Silpat baked a lot better than those baked on parchment paper–they had less air bubbles and they came out more dense and in better shapes. The recipe warns not to make them on a rainy day because humidity matters when baking macarons, though in the South it is pretty difficult to find a time when it isn’t humid, so we just went for it. In the end, I think that they might have baked a little better if it had been more sunny that day because a lot of them cracked pretty easily when we were filling them. Speaking of filling, them Lemon Vanilla macarons were filled with Lemon Curd, Raspberry Almond with seedless Raspberry Jam, and the Blueberry Cheesecake with a blueberry jam + cream cheese mixture. They came out pretty tasty, especially for our first attempt, though I found that I wanted the fillings to be…creamier maybe? They were really light, especially the tart Lemon Curd with the sweet vanilla cookie, but they didn’t hold their shape well and the cookies sort of slid apart when left sitting. Next time I try my hand at these I think I’ll do some research on the perfect filling. I think this recipe for S’mores Macarons will be next on my list. Once we put them in the oven, we tried to sit around and talk, but we were too excited to see how they were going to turn out. We kept anxiously checking them while they baked to make sure they weren’t burning or cracking. The recipe says to bake them at 300 degrees for 20 minutes, but We found that they came out slightly browned on the edges. We cut the last tray back to 15 minutes and they came out better. I’m sure that will vary depending on your oven, but keep an eye on them while they’re baking! Have you ever made French Macarons? And for the locals, have you found anywhere that sells these sweet little treats? I hear that you can get them at Dreamcakes on occasion, but I have yet to find them anywhere else.