May 28, 2008

French Macarons and Tag

I have been wanting to try to make macaroons for a long, long, long time. Because I am not really fond of meringues-type biscuits, I have to have a good excuse to eventually get myself do it. Minko of Couture Cupcakes apparently is successful of making me 'do try it' kick by organizing this lovable Mad for Macarons in May. Yes, it is macarons, instead of macaroons, because it is French type of macaroons.

I have tried to make these lovely flat top macarons by using a recipe which I thought would work for me but the result was zero. The batter gone quite hard to get through the noozle, it wasn't quite light as I expected. Then, I made myself browsing recipes on the internet and came across The Amateur Food Nerd article on David Lebovitz' French Macarons. I almost dared myself to get into the kitchen with printed papers on my hand instead of attending the weedy gardens or raking up Autumn leaves.


Actually, I am not happy with the result. After the whole hours to make them right, they still don't look good. They are cracked and they have pointed hats. What did I do wrong? I think I've whisked the egg whites with all my heart and fold the almond powder gently with other ingredients. I also make sure that all the ingredients are well-combined before folded in. And, I still have cracked tops? It's not fair!

french macarons

Anyway, first time can't always be perfect, I said to myself. With these similar events might come up, I will still have more excuses to get better in making these lovely biscuits.

french macarons

Now, I've been tagged for 10 best photographs by Deeba of Passionate about Baking and Beyond. I am thinking that I don't think I have the "best" so far, but I do have the most favourite ones which I like. My best photos may not always be your preferences. I may think one photo is lovely while others may think it's ordinary. So, it is all about taste.

Food photography is new to me because I do love taking nature or outdoor lives rather than tucking myself in a dark room or a table where all food and properties grouped and shot. I have my 6 shots I love to view from natures, including flowers, pets, and insects. Do let me know what you think, if you feel like to.

luv ya perspective pearls loving it lick the dews orange beauty

And yet, food photography becomes a joy, now although, I am still very much a learner. I think I will always be a learner because there is always something new in technology. You can't really think you're super, can you? I am not that kind of person who takes herself a pride but I do become critical in taking pictures, especially when they are going to be enjoyed by others.

I love learning from others and I love this kind of topic in conversation. I can talk about it on and on. I feel like this world is a field I enjoy the most, the world of creative minds through the scientific knowledge of photogenic and its technology. I am using my sense of art, the balance of brain and heart.

If you view my photostream from the very beginning until today, you may find the process and the progress I have made so far. That is learning all about. The process may take a long time to become visible in the progress. It takes pain, time and mistakes. Yet, it pays the price: the joy. If you are enjoying my photos, that is a success on me. That is an achievement and it is priceless, and I am thankful to you.

spoonfuls #2 butterscotch cupcakes two blues knife egg #3 lindt lindor 60% banana and coconut pudding #1 tempe goreng tepung tapioca pearls #2 classic sourdough bread banoffie pie

Through the same passion (perhaps, I can borrow this term to describe the joy of taking photos), I have found many bloggers as well as professional photographers and wannabees through many groups and clubs on flickr. In Food Photography Club, there are talented people and there are always supportive and constructive comments I can find useful for great feedbacks in the future portfolios. I also have made interesting niche with some of the members. It is nice.

Through my baking club on Flickr, I also have two moderators who also are fond of taking food photographs: Dita in Kuwait and Rita in Australia. Our club members are also interacting with each other to get more knowledge and more involved in food photography by sharing experiences, developing techniques, and also entering the monthly food photography challenges.

Therefore, I am passing the baton to my friends in the FPC and KBB-Flickr:



Peter G said...

I think the macarons turned out really great Arfi. But I can also understand the self critique we do on our own creations. Thanks for the tag...I'll get to it soon. I also love the collection you put up on your blog...really stunning and you should feel very proud of yourself.

Cakelaw said...

Macarons freak me out because of all that I have read about them - but yours look great!!!

Happy cook said...

I love macroons, but till now i have not dared to make them.
Your looks really delicious

Kevin said...

Your macarons look pretty good! I tried making a batch last night and I could not get them off the pan in one piece... I tried again tonight with parchment paper and they are not coming off of that in one piece either....

Arfi Binsted said...

P: I learn a lot from you, TK and S who always come to have a look at what my recent works are and give good suggestions for my next reference. Thanks to you, P :) I can't be very proud but I am just getting better, I suppose.

Gaye: I think they are just like meringues, although they're included almond powder? I don't know. I am not happy with these ones yet.

Happy: thanks! They don't turn out flatish like they should be, I think. I'll have to try them out again next time.

Kevin: uhm... perhaps they are not cooked thoroughly yet? good luck to you the next time, Kevin. I'd like to try these out the second time, too!

Mike of Mike's Table said...

Those macarons look delicious...and the older photos also look wonderful!

Passionate baker...& beyond said...

Good for you Ab...saw macaroons at Cherrapeno & these yummy macarons at yours;am still too chicken to try them out. Maybe one day...thanks you for taking up the photography tag. Honestly, yours pictures are STUNNING; some of the best across blogs. I keep coming back to feast my eyes on them. It's not just the clarity, but the composition & the creativity as well. Am gonna check out your flckr club...thank you dear girl, your blog is like a breadth of fresh air!!

Arfi Binsted said...

Mike: gee, thanks! :)

Deeba: Hey, do join us at the club, you'll be welcomed! thanks for your kind words, Deeba! I am just an amateur hehehe

Y said...

Arfi, I'm a big fan of all your photos, and of your amazing food. The macarons look so pretty, even if they didn't turn out the way you wanted them to - I bet they tasted great! Someone else more experienced might be able to troubleshoot your macaron problems, but I think the cracked tops could be due to not letting them sit for long enough to form a proper skin on top, and the nippley bits might be because the mix wasn't folded enough times.

Mansi Desai said...

the macaroons look lovely Arfi! those cracks and pointed hats give them a designer look, and add to their charm:) loved the photo with the tea!!

btw, these would be great for my Monthly Mingle event, if you'd like to participate!:) do check the details on my blog sidebar:)

JSL@Palate said...

Hi there, I was kindly referred to your site by Barbara from Winos & Foodies.

You're photography is absolutely Stunning!! The food looks good enough to eat as, of course, it should. Yummm...

the AIRY FAIRY said...

hi arfi, i love all your photos - they are beautifully lit and so well you definitely deserve all the awards you get for them. keep up the amazing work :)