Category Archives: Cute

DIY October: Macarons!

 

macarons

This recipe is based on the one from Nigella Lawson’s wonderful cookbook, How to Be a Domestic Goddess. They’re easy as pie, too, so have no fear!

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Basic Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup almonds, or other nuts, plus ¼ cup for the filling
  • ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar, plus 1 2/3 cups for the filling
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ cup softened, unsalted butter, for the filling
  • 2 cookie trays, lined with wax paper

Basic Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°
  2. Put whatever nuts you are using in the food processor with the confectioner’s sugar until you have a smooth powder.
  3. Whisk the egg whites part way, then sprinkle them with the sugar and whisk until they are quite stiff and hold peaks. I recommend using a hand mixer.
  4. Fold the whites and nut-dust together, until they are mostly combined. It will be mixed more as you pipe it.
  5. Scoop your batter into a ziploc bag, while keeping one corner empty. Then cut ½ inch into that corner. You can also use a pastry bag with a ½ inch tip, if you have one.
  6. Pipe out macaron-sized circles onto the baking sheet. They won’t really expand, but don’t put them too close together.
  7. Let the macarons sit until a skin has formed on them, about 10 minutes. This is very important if you want smooth, pretty macarons.
  8. Bake the macarons for 10-12 minutes. When they are done, they will look firm and set, but not dry. Then cool the macarons on their trays.
  9. Next, grind the nuts and confectioners’ sugar for the filling.
  10. Cream the butter and add the nut-sugar into a buttercream.
  11. Once the macaroons are completely cool, remove them from their trays with a spatula.
  12. Then pipe half the macarons with the buttercream, and sandwich the other macarons on top of them.
  13. Ta da!

Ideas to Try:

Once you have this recipe down, you can substitute other nuts and fillings easily, or add color or topping.

  • Hazelnut Chocolate
    • Substitute hazelnuts for pistachios, and add melted chocolate to the filling. Shaved chocolate top of the cookies completes the look!
  • Rainbow
    • Add a little food dye to the egg whites and to the buttercream. Pastels are the best.
  • Pistachio
    • Use shelled, salted pistachios instead almonds. Trust me, the salt is good.
  • Jam
    • Fill almond macarons with jam or lemon curd instead of buttercream, and add a little dye to the cookies to go with your jam color
  • Coffee-Chocolate
    • Add espresso powder to the nut-sugar, and add melted chocolate and espresso to the buttercream

Experiment! Having several flavors all on one plate is very pretty.

 

For more information, check out these cool library books on the subject!

Macarons (by Mowie Kay)

Macarons (by Cecile Cannone)

Les Petits Macarons (Ebook, by Kathryn Gordon)

— recipe by Phoebe, Greenwood Branch

GWD

Teen Reviewed: Palace of Dreams

Palace of DreamsPalace of Dreams by Adam Jay Epstein and Andrew Jacobson

After the war with Paksahara peace is in the queendom of Vastia. The three familiars Aldwyn, Skyler, and Gilbert are well-known heroes now.  But all of a sudden, when a birthday celebration goes wrong and Queen Loranella is on the receiving end of a not so friendly curse, the three familiars are the prime suspects.  After escaping the palace dungeons, they take on a quest to clear their names.  This quest will lead them all across Vastia and even into the magical and ever-changing land of dreams.

I started reading because I have read the previous three books, so when this book came out, I was intrigued and wanted to read it.

I kept on reading because although the beginning was slow, in the middle it really added some twists and turns which made it hard to guess the ending.

If they were in a yearbook, they would be voted Most Likely To…
Aldwyn: Pull off an elaborate heist.
Skylar: Become the next Albert Einstein.
Gilbert: Hide.

Six Word Review: Three familiars go and save queendom.

Website: The Familiars

–Liz, Grade 8, Lake City

LCY

Last Minute Valentine Ideas from a Quasi-Professional Procrastinator

So you just remembered that it’s almost Valentine’s Day. It’s your mother’s birthday tomorrow and you need something heartfelt. Any schmuck can buy an iTunes gift card. It takes real skill, craft, if you will, to gift something creative while low on time and budget. Never fear, a quasi-professional present procrastinator is here! Continue reading

What's Going on @ Your Library!

Hello SummerSunday, August 18, 2013

  •  Teen Space presents: End of Summer Pizza Party Ballard 1:30 – 3:30 pm. Need a space to be creative and have fun? Come to Teen Space at the Ballard Branch — it’s a place to meet up and hang out! Join us for an end of summer pizza party. For ages 12-18.
  • Africa Sing! Africa Dance! @ NewHolly 1:30 – 2:30pm. Join Etienne Cakpo for an interactive performance of singing, clapping and dancing. Everyone will enjoy songs and dances from Africa. For all ages.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

  • Teen Space presents: Cutielicious Felt Creatures @ Delridge 2 – 4 pm. The world’s cutest miniature felt creatures are coming to the Delridge Branch! All materials supplied, join us to put them together. For ages 12-18. Continue reading

Pinterest

As technology evolves there are so many new ways to communicate and express your style. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, tumblr, Pinterest and oh-so-many more.

My personal favorite out of all of these is Pinterest, a website that allows you to tag other people’s photos and websites onto your own boards.  You can organize these boards however you want.  One of my personal favorite things about Pinterest is the DIY projects of the Design Your Own.

There are countless ideas you can do ranging in complexity and style.  Do a quick search, see for yourself, and never be bored again. 🙂

Megan, Northeast Teen Advisor

This Week @ Your Library

Check out the awesome events we have planned for teens all around the city next week!  Sadly, this is our last week of Summer Reading activities, so be sure to check out a program!  You can always look at the calendar on our website for more details.

Monday, August 20, 2012

4:30 pm
Book Games for Teens @ Montlake
Games include Book Bingo, Book Mad Libs, Book Go Fish, and other fun activities that get us talking about our favorite stories and characters. All you need to bring is your imagination! Continue reading

This Week @ Your Library

Check out the awesome events we have planned for teens all around the city this week.  You can always check the calendar on our website for more details.

Monday, August 13, 2012

3:00 pm
DIY: Jewelry/Assemblages @ Columbia
Bolt necklaces, washer bracelets and heavy metal belt buckles. Make your own bling out of things you can buy at the hardware store! Supplies provided by the Library. For ages 12+.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

2:00 pm

Ker-splat!

Angry Birds @ South Park
Those terrible pigs are upsetting our birds! Come to the Library to create your very own evil pig and angry bird. We’ll have the materials; you bring your creativity, building and aiming skills. For ages 12-18.

 

 Mini-Felt Creatures @ Lake City
Hand stitch creepy creatures. All you have to do is show up and put them together! All materials supplied. For ages 12-18. Registration is required.

4:00 pm
Game On! @ Northgate
Get your game on at the Library with board games, Kinect, Wii sports, Mario Kart and Donkey Kong! Continue reading