Being in Paris this Spring inspired me to once again try my hand at Macarons. Though my macarons are but crumbs on the floor compared to Pierre Herme's, I thought they were pretty good for being 'American made'!
Here's the recipe I used to make the macarons served at Coco and Duckie yesterday! My favorite thing about these little bites of decadence is how simple it is to create virtually any flavor. I've made Matcha Green Tea Macarons, Salted Caramel Macarons, Fuji Apple Macarons, to name a few! Get creative and come up with your own flavor combos and let me know how they turn out! :) Happy baking!!!
Macarons will be served again soon at Coco and Duckie so put your favorite flavors in the comment section below!
Kitchen Aid with a whisk attachment or some serious commitment to hand whisking.
Convection Oven (It's possible to use a regular oven...your baking temp will just need to be a bit lower)
Ingredients for Macarons
115g Almond Flour
230g Powdered Sugar
144g Egg Whites
72g Granulated Sugar
2g Kosher Salt
Weigh your almond flour and powdered sugar together into a bowl. Sift together. Whisk together.
In your kitchen aid whisk on high the granulated sugar and egg whites to medium peaks. Very gently fold the meringue into the flour/powdered sugar, fold no more than 20 times or your macaron tops will get a greasy look after they have baked.
Put your macaron batter into a pastry bag. Affix the parchment paper to the sheet pan by putting a little bit of batter at each corner. Then pipe out the macarons in 1 1/2" circles! Now the fun part...after you have piped out the cookies, while holding the pan with both hands bang the bottom of the pan onto the counter top to set the macarons. Let them sit uncovered on the counter for about 20 minutes so they can form a semi-hard skin.
Bake at 300 degrees for 12 minutes, rotating the baking sheet half way though the bake time. let the macarons cool completely before you try taking them off the parchment paper.
Ingredients for Chocolate Filling:
(Remember, you can use any kind of filling!)
125g 50% Chocolate
125g Heavy Cream
Step #1 set the chocolate aside in a bowl with a spatula
Step #2 heat the heavy cream until it starts to boil
Step #3 pour the cream over the chocolate, let it sit for 1 minute the stir the chocolate until it becomes silky.
Step #4 let sit until firm enough to pipe onto macarons (I usually make the filling the night before)
An Iced Coffee That Outsmarts The Summer Heat
By Erin Phraner
, Photographed by Alice Gao
It’s iced-coffee season, and we couldn’t be more thrilled! You see, mastering your morning fix at home is easy, especially with our homemade iced-coffee hacks. We’ve been using these tricks to save us time, money, and the stress of long (steamy) café lines…and we’re ready to let in you on our secrets. So, get ready to improve your iced-coffee routine — we’re here to help!The Perfect Ratio
Every coffee drinker has his or her own ideal ratio of coffee-to-beans-to-time. This method is our favorite. Remember: Some say cold-brewed coffee is more caffeinated than regular coffee, so use this as a concentrate and mix it with a little cold water before using.
Best Cold-Brewed Iced Coffee
about 2 cups concentrate
½ cup whole coffee beans
2 cups room temperature water
1. Grind the coffee beans in a grinder for about 30 seconds. Transfer to a French press. Pour the water over the grounds, cover with the French press top, and set aside at room temperature overnight.
2. In the morning, push down the filter to stop the brewing. Strain into a container and keep in the refrigerator for up to one week. Serve over ice mixed with water and/or milk.
Simple Syrup Saver
Simple syrup is our preferred sweetener for iced coffee, far superior to having undissolved sugar bits in your drink! We keep ours in a DIY dispenser for easy access and to prevent spills — because, let’s face it, we’re not the most nimble first thing in the morning.
1 container, plus simple syrup
1 empty pump-top soap bottle
1 bottle Goo Gone
1. Remove the labels from one empty pump-top soap bottle in hot soap water and wipe off any glue residue with Goo Gone or a similar product. Thoroughly wash out and dry the container.
2. Meanwhile, simmer equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Pour into the prepared container and store in the refrigerator for up to two months.
Vanilla-Milk Ice Cubes
Turn vanilla-flavored milk into ice cubes and save yourself the trouble of dressing up your iced coffee in the morning — just add the flavored cubes and the milk/vanilla will incorporate into the coffee as they melt. Hey, vegans: Try the same thing with coconut milk!
about 2 dozen ice cubes
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, split
1. Put the milk in a medium bowl or pitcher. Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the milk using the tip of a sharp knife; whisk until combined.
2. Divide the milk mixture among two ice cube trays. Freeze at least three hours or overnight.
Homemade Coffee Creamer
Hyper-cool café culture has tricked us into believing coffee creamer is for sinners. But, can we just admit that a little hit of hazelnut-flavored Coffee Mate tastes incredible now and then!? Here’s an idea: Enjoy your creamer without the stigma by turning it into an edible DIY project that you can flavor however you’d like.
about 2 cups
2 cups fat-free or reduced-fat milk
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 to 2 teaspoons flavoring (ideas below)
1. Shake the milk and sweetened condensed milk in an airtight container for 30 seconds or until combined (alternatively, whizz ‘em up for a few seconds in a blender).
2. Stir in one to two teaspoons flavorings and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. Shake well before using.
- vanilla extract
- almond extract
- coconut extract
- hazelnut extract
- butterscotch extract
- cocoa powder
- espresso powder
- maple syrup
- caramel ice cream topping
You get the idea….
DIY Mason Jar To-Go Cups
Don’t waste your money buying a special iced-coffee container. Everyone seems to have at least one mason jar these days, and you can turn it into a to-go cup (perfect for iced coffee) in literally 30 seconds. All you need is a hole punch and a straw.
1 mason jar or other jar with separate lid and ring
1 single hole punch
1. Insert the mason jar lid (the flat disk-shaped piece) into the hole punch as far as you can.
2. Firmly squeeze the hole punch to puncture a hole in the lid; wiggle the lid to release it from the hole punch and discard the punched out circle.
3. Place the lid on top of the mason jar and screw on the ring to secure. Insert a straw into the hole — voilà
“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales”
Summer upon us, so find some shade a tall glass of lemonade and a book to fall into! At Coco and Duckie we love LOVE love fairy tales! From the Brothers Grimm to Madame d'Aulnoy we adore them all!
Peter Pan retold by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson with the beautiful art of Disney's Mary Blair!
For more than a dozen years, an unassuming, quiet-spoken woman dominated Disney design. The stylishness and vibrant color of Disney films in the early 1940s through mid-1950s came primarily from artist Mary Blair. In her prime, she was an amazingly prolific American artist who enlivened and influenced the not-so-small worlds of film, print, theme parks, architectural decor, and advertising. At its core, her art represented joyful creativity and communicated pure pleasure to the viewer. Her exuberant fantasies brimmed with beauty, charm, and wit, melding a child's fresh eye with adult experience. Blair's personal flair comprised the imagery that flowed effortlessly and continually for more than a half a century from her brush. Emulated by many, she remains inimitable: a dazzling sorceress of design and color.
A staple in the fairy tale world. My personal favorite!
"Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten."
— G.K. Chesterton
This is a magnificent book series about the brothers Grimm's descendants......the Sisters Grimm! They live in a town inhabited entirely by fairy tale characters and creatures. Prince Charming is the Mayor, the Big Bad Wolf is not so bad and Snow White is the 2nd Grade Teacher (because she's so good with little people)! The series follows the girls as they solve various mysteries that happen in Ferryport landing. It will make for a magical read for the young and young at heart! We carry the entire series of Sisters Grimm along with fairy tales illustrated by Mary Blair at Coco and Duckie!
I hope you find your perfect summer read!
Photos via Tumblr