It's really important you set your eggs out way earlier. Hours at least, but a full day is fantastic! This will really help your egg whites whip easily.
Our best recipe that we have found was actually from a book I purchased years ago for only $3 at TJ Maxx in a clearance bin! It is called "Macaroons 30 recipes for perfect bite-size treats". I like their basic recipe. But really, almost all macaron recipes are the same. Their differences are small. We liked how small of a batch it made. Just one baking sheet worth, this makes it more manageable. And if you mess it up- it's only a small amount!
Use parchment paper to line your baking sheet. That's what we found works best. If you are really uneasy about your piping skills, you can purchase a Silpat that is already marked with sizes. Or find something that is macaron-sized and trace on the parchment paper yourself. We chose to freehand it. If your sizes vary, you can always find a match.
If your freshly piped macarons have air bubbles, gently tap the entire baking sheet on your counter top. That should release the bubbles. Although this usually can be avoided if you pour the batter in the piping bag without air in it.
Once you have piped your macarons, it is so important for you to let them sit and rest. Let them rest for about 20 minutes. When you touch them, they should not be dried out, but dry enough that your finger doesn't stick to them.
We are working with a standard electric oven that keeps temperature well. If you are unsure about your oven, an oven thermometer is always great! Throughout our experience, and all the tutorials that people have written it is common that you may want to add moisture to your baking environment- but we didn't have to worry about anything like that!
See how these pictured above have little lumps? Hard to avoid, but this is why putting so much effort into grinding and sifting the almond flour is so important. If you don't, it's not the end of the world, but this is what they will look like.
When baking these bad boys, be so careful not to overcook them. Not even by a few seconds. They turn brown and lose their gorgeous color. They will also crack quite easily. Not pretty.
What have been the best things you've learned about Macaron making? Have you ever tried? We'd love to hear! Soon I'll be adding a post about what NOT to do when making Macarons... including pictures! ;)