I Love Macarons
by Hisako Ogita
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I Love Macarons / B00B2XPBLW
So, everyone else on earth has already said this about this book, but I'll add on to the pile: The pictures are pretty, the ideas are great, the recipes are flat-out wrong. I haven't had a chance to confirm that the recipes use too much egg-whites, but I wouldn't be surprised because our first batch was too runny. But! Everything plumped up and I even had pied-feet and was feeling great...
...until the oven burned the cookies like whoa, because 375 degrees fahrenheit for 15-18 minutes is going to practically set your cookies on fire. (Not really, but they WILL smell like burned popcorn.) That was quite the bummer and meant that I had to guesstimate how long to cook the next two trays, and it ended up being a bit of a mess.
Then the icing. The recipe seems to be trying to get your sugar-water mixture to the soft ball candy stage, but 4 minutes in the microwave (which is the STARTING point given, with more time added "as needed") ended up in a caramel that was practically black. And subsequent tests with the microwave convinced me that the line between soft ball stage and hard thread stage is too fine to try to achieve in my microwave. So that's a huge disappointment.
I think this book is pretty, the pictures are lovely, and in terms of talking you through the theory of macaroons and the available flavor combinations, there's a lot of good material here. But in terms of, you know, actually making the cookies, this book is worse than useless because unless you read the reviews, you'll go into this trusting the book and end up with burned cookies and burned sugar. A lot of effort with nothing to show for it.
Two stars because no matter how pretty the book is, someone should have tested the recipes before publishing this edition. (Macaroon book, you had ONE JOB!)
~ Ana Mardoll