Inspired by this Viking class, I will continue to try until I get it right!
My goal was to achieve smooth tops on the macarons, and that I did achieve. However, I made a mistake at some point in the process.
I stirred together the powdered sugar and almond meal, and then processed into a fine powder in the food processor.
fluffy mountain of powdered sugar/almond meal
smooth and white, double sifted
egg yolks were aged about 52 hours on the counter in a shallow bowl covered with a paper towel; whipping at medium speed until bubbles begin to form (mistake #1: recipe required 1t lemon juice added at this point - I added the entire small container of juice which was about 2t [this is why mise en place is so important!]
adding granulated sugar after a whirl through the food processor; I wanted to be sure the sugar would properly dissolve in the egg whites
soft peak - not ready yet
stiff peak - ready
holding mixer bowl over my head; Rachel Allen says this can be done with properly whipped egg whites; it worked!
dry ingredients added to egg whites/sugar; 50 strokes (probably over-mixed at this point)
batter is too thin
rounds of batter are too large and too thin, but the TOPS ARE SMOOTH; they dried smooth, and baked to a beautiful smooth top
And, here the pictures cease. The macarons did form feet in the oven at about 6 minutes. (mistake #2: after rereading the recipe, the oven should have been at 320 degrees - mine was at 350 degrees) However, they did not properly bake, as they stuck to the Silpat when removed from the oven, and the shiny smooth top separated from the undercooked bottom.
They had a wonderful flavor as I scraped bits and pieces from the pan to sample.
Though this was not a success, I am encouraged. Hopefully, post #3 will show beautiful, home baked French Macarons!
I somewhat followed this recipe.