What do you get when you mix cardamom with ginger? A wonderfully spicy confection! These cardamom ginger French macaroons are a unique blend of spice and sweet!
Learning how to make French macaroons was a test of my skills, patience, and overcoming ability. Lots of tears were shed while I practiced and practiced the confections. I couldn’t let a cookie beat me.
Well, that’s just how competitive I truly am. Woman vs. Cookie.
In the beginning, it was often Macaroon:1; Woman:0. But, once I got the hang of the techniques and took the time to really sift the flour and sugar in the beginning, something magical happened. Deliciously magical.
French macaroons, baby! The Frenchman was so supportive of my learning, and his reward for all that encouragement was being able to indulge in some of his favorite treats. The best part is that once you get the technique down, the flavor combinations are endless.
The cardamom ginger French macaroon idea was born one day while the Frenchman and I were grocery shopping.
I am not sure how, but it started out with smelling cilantro all over the store. It was a magical scent that hung in the air, like someone chopping fresh cilantro right next to us. As we moved on through the produce section, we came across fresh ginger hands.
Oh, the smell of fresh ginger is one of my favorites. So bright and deep scented. That’s when it began. The Frenchman’s food brain started going a million miles an hour.
“What if you made macaroons with ginger? That would be so good!” Of course, I was in the middle of deciding on chicken breasts or thighs for dinner, but that’s beside the point.
We agreed that ginger would be awesome for a filling, but what flavor would go good with the cookie? It HAD to be something wild, unique, and blend well with ginger. Cardamom was the answer. Together, cardamom and ginger create a flavor profile in a French macaroon like none other. It’s spicy, sweet, with a perfect balance of both.
Some ideas for making the best French macaroons:
- let your eggs get to room temperature. They will whip into stiff peaks faster and easier.
- Grind, grind, grind your flour and powdered sugar. Ideally, running it in a blender or food processor at least 2 times will help get rid of any chunks. Chunks=no bueno, as they will overpower the egg whites and your cookies will fail.
- Sift that flour and sugar mixture at least 2 times as well. Remember, chunks are NOT your friend.
- Let your macaroons dry on the cookie sheet for at least 20 minutes before you put them in the oven. Some say you don’t need to do that, but when I didn’t, they were a failure for me. I found I achieved a crispy texture on the outside far more consistently when I let them dry out before baking.
- Don’t be afraid to put them BACK into the oven. You are wanting to “hear” your cookies. Tap them on the top gently and if they sound crunchy and hollow, they are done.
- Be okay with failure. Just DON’T give up. French macaroons can take a couple times to really get the technique down. Hang in there, you CAN do this!
- 107 grams almond flour
- 176 grams powdered sugar
- 4 teaspoons dried cardamom
- 3 large egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 55 grams granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon brown gel food coloring, as desired
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons fresh ginger, or 1 teaspoon dried ground ginger