There are a few things on my “bucket list” and one was to learn how to make macarons. Those little french pastries are a bit of an addiction for me ever since my first trip to Paris years ago. Today, there are so many places to get macarons. But how hard could it be to make them? They look simple enough, right? HA!
I had been scoping out places in the city for a class to take. Le Dolci, located on Dundas Street West was always on the back of my mind so I finally had a Saturday that matched up with their 2 hour workshop! Yay!
When I had arrived there were about 16 people in the class with both men and women. Two tables were set up with the ingredients and we were provided with one of their recipes… did you know there were different variations of macarons? I had no idea! And if you’ think you’re going to only make “French” macarons well, be prepared — apparently they are the most fiddly to make. There was a show of hands by those had already attempted to make them on their own and then the same hands were raised by those who failed.
Oh. I had slumped deep in my seat at that point.
But our instructor, Chef Lindsey, who has made more macarons in her lifetime than she can count, has a few tricks up her sleeve. Aha! Now that’s what I wanted to know! Any advice was welcomed by this newbie!
We were all hungry for her to share her macaron wisdom with us! “Weather has much to do with making macarons.” That’s why there are various recipes depending on what region you got the recipe from and where you will be making them! And the ingredients that react to each other in the recipe is very sensitive to each other. “You cannot afford to add fat, even the slightest, at the wrong time.”
Oh, she’s good!!! Chef Lindsey continued to offer us her personal tricks of the trade and then we realized that two hours had gone by in a blink of an eye! We all had the opportunity to watch her make a batch and then we broke into two groups and made our own macaron shells. We each had turns blending the ingredients and piping them onto the trays. The fillings were already made for us (chocolate ganache, vanilla and strawberry buttercream) as they weren’t as difficult but that strawberry buttercream is what dreams are made of!
I had fully expected the process to be overwhelming and Chef Lindsey mentioned that they are probably one of the most difficult pastries to make. But it’s a personal challenge for me to make them at home especially now that I’m armed with a few tricks from the trade!
The class was a great starting point and well….I can’t wait to try this on my own!
Now, I’m checking out what other classes I can take there!
Le Dolci Cupcakes and Cakes Shop & Food Studio is located at 1006 Dundas Street West, Toronto. For more information about their classes, workshops..and amazing foodie travel trips (yep! they have one coming up to Paris!!) visit www.ledolci.com or call 416-262-3400.
Have you ever made macarons? What was your experience?