My quest to start a whoopie pie stand of my very own in a Chicago farmers market.
After receiving a fantastically encouraging e-mail from a friend who is also starting a small business and hearing things like “$4,000 isn’t really that much to figure out if this is what you want to do,” I went into my latest macsperiment guns blazing, screaming “I can do this!” to the macaron gods and of course, of course, I ended up with the least attractive batch of macarons I’ve ever attempted. Here they are in all of their footless, cakey, too brown glory:
I used a recipe enticingly titled “Almost Foolproof Macarons” and I can now fully appreciate the “almost.” Long story short is that my Italian meringue never set up right. It was way too runny even after 15 minutes of high speed whipping. So I thought, alright, I’ll just use French meringue. Except I had already added half of my unbeaten egg whites to the almond flour/powdered sugar mixture per the recipe and apparently that mixture + French meringue doesn’t work together too well unless you want whoopie cakes. Which I don’t…I think.
But wait a minute…whoopie pies actually sounds like a much easier version of what I’m trying to do here…and my one success this past weekend was the banana cream pie filling I made. And these cakey cookies + that banana cream pie filling turned out to be exceedingly delicious and even my boyfriend who generally doesn’t like whoopie pies liked them and ohmygod I think I just changed my mind, you guys!
A quick google search doesn’t turn up that many places in Chicago offering whoopie pies, and of the ones that do, most seem to be the classic chocolate/vanilla combo (except for the awesome Bleeding Heart, but that’s fine). But the flavors that I had come up with for macarons would work in whoppie pie form too:
1) Carrot cake
2) PB & J
3) Banana pudding
5) Boston Cream Pie (this would be AWESOME)
6) Key Lime Pie
A quarter of them already come in pie form!!! It’s a sign! I wouldn’t have to worry about humidity or aging egg whites or cooking syrups to the correct temperature or waiting for the shells to dry before baking or waiting for filled macarons to “mature” in the fridge or shells breaking during transportation or explaining what a macaron is or or or!
I’m excited. Much more excited than I was after that “failed” macsperiment on Saturday. Although credit for my willingness to forge on has to go to my boyfriend who showed me this video that made my mind do a complete 180: watch it.