Baking| Lebkuchen & Garam Masala Macarons … and the failings of my sourdough experiment! Blame Scrooge!!

“External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth could warm, no wintry weather chill him. No wind that blew was bitterer than he, no falling snow was more intent upon its purpose, no pelting rain less open to entreaty.”
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

Lebkuchen and Garam Masala MacaronsScrooge, my sourdough starter let me down. He’s been sitting on my counter for the past few days, being diligently fed, bubbling a bit now and then, showing signs of life. Everyone seems so hungry during the holidays, but Scrooge was the hungriest … after Coco of course. But the sourdough for Daring Bakers wasn’t meant to be. What did ‘happen‘ however were these Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons with a salted butter caramel buttercream!Coco on ChristmasSourdough trouble! I got up that morning and everything seemed to go wrong. Decided to make half a recipe, and weighed out double Scrooge in error. PLOP … he fell in and almost instantly I tried to fish him out. ACK…don’t even bother if you ever make that mistake. It was the day after Christmas, the coldest in the past 10 years. No way was Scrooge going to lend some warmth to my dough to rise. He just clenched his fists and stayed put! 2 hours later, minimum rise … Sourdough starter, Scrooge It rose marginally after beign somewhat shaped; then we ran into yet another power cut for the rest of the day. By the time the electricity was back, the oven preheated, and I bunged the dough into the oven, I was distracted. There was so much more to do. I cranked the oven to the highest setting … and forgot all about the bread! Coco on ChristmasSigh!! The tops burnt, spewing out black fumes! {No pictures…sorry!} A kitchen filled with smoke was enough to ring the deathknell on my bread! So I am back to the drawing board again, feeding the little bit of miserly Scrooge who sulks on the counter. Must try the drama again, maybe on a warmer day. Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons In the meantime, I am back with some feet that ran faster than Scrooge, that gave me more luck on the not so cheery day! Yes, it gladdened my heart to find success by way of Mactweets, our call this month to let the seasons and her holidays inspire you. We’ve had some stunning macarons join our ranks these past few weeks.Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons I jumped in late and present my humble mac-offeringLebkuchen Macarons & Garam Masala Macarons with Salted Caramel Buttercream. I had piped out others, colours, flavours … but alas, the power tripped again, so I am glad to have a few.Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons Jamie and I tempted you to Think COLOR: I did {though sadly my pinks and blues didn’t make it}; Think FLAVOR: I did … Lebkuchen and garam masala and salted butter caramel from Jamies recipe that I so love! Think HOLIDAY: Impossible not to. Kids at home 24 X 7, hungry and full of beans, pooch so excited to have kids at home so even she is more full of beans than ever before … always something happening!Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Macarons

Do you want to join us making MACARONS?

If you do, you are most welcome to join us  for this challenge, or the next. You can find all the information at our dedicated macaron blog MacTweets. We generally post the round-up by the end of every month, following which a new challenge is posted!

[print_this]Recipe: Lebkuchen & Garam Masala Macarons your picture

Summary: Lebkuchen and Garam Masala Vanilla Macarons sandwiched with a salted butter caramel buttercream. Holidays are here!

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

  • Lebkuchen / Garam Masala Macarons
  • 1 egg white, aged 2 days
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 1tsp Lebkuchen spice or Garam Masala {either one}
  • 1/2 cup powdered vanilla sugar
  • 1/4 tsp egg white powder
  • 2 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • Few drops orange food colour
  • Salted Butter Caramel Buttercream
  • 3 tbsp of salted butter caramel sauce {recipe here}, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature


  1. Lebkuchen / Garam Masala Macarons
  2. Preheat oven to 140C.
  3. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Blend the powdered sugar, almond meal, Lebkuchen spice or garam masala {whichever you choose} and egg white powder briefly in the bowl of your food processor to mix. {you can sift it too}
  5. In a large clean bowl, beat the egg white for about 20 seconds till it appears foamy. Gradually add the granulated sugar and continue to beat till it becomes firm and holds peaks, about 2 minutes.
  6. Carefully fold the dry ingredients, in two batches, into the beaten egg white with a flexible rubber spatula. When the mixture is just smooth and falls in ribbons like molten lave, stop folding. {Do not overmix}
  7. Using a teaspoon, or piping bag, drop / pipe the batter on the parchment-lined baking sheets in 1″ circles evenly spaced one-inch apart.
  8. Rap the baking sheet a few times firmly on the counter top to flatten the macarons, then rest for about an hour.
  9. Bake them for about 15 minutes until the shells feel firm to touch.
  10. Let cool completely then remove from baking sheet.
  11. Salted Butter Caramel Buttercream
  12. Whisk the salted butter caramel with the butter until smooth and firm.
  13. To assemble:
  14. Match equal halves of macarons, and keep together.
  15. Use a small spoon and deposit a tiny amount of buttercream filling on the flat side of the macaron and sandwich with another half of the same size, squeezing gently. Leave to set.
  16. Notes: I bake my macarons on the upper shelf in my oven, using just the lower element for heat. I also use double baking trays.


These holiday cookies are on the way to Suma’s Cakes And More Cookie Fest
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Also find me on The Rabid Baker, The Times of India



  • 5 years ago

    Great macaron flavors! Really original. Beautiful too.

    Best wishes for 2012!



  • Delicious!

  • What great flavors for macarons! And the salted butter caramel buttercream is just divine.

  • 5 years ago

    YUM!!! You were the inspiration for me adding garam masala to my Christmas cakes – a raving success I might say – so garam masala macarons sound divine especially so with the salted butter caramel buttercream – wow!!. Sorry about your sourdough 🙁

    Happy New Year!!

    Cheers, Patricia

  • 5 years ago

    Oh God! Coco is unbelievable, love his furry paws, and his cute xmas cap….What a DARRRRLLING!

    Sorry about ur sourdough 🙁

    The salted butter caramel sauce sounds delicious!

  • Varsha
    5 years ago

    Hi Deeba,

    Lovely recipe. Please let me know where will I get Almond meal and parchment paper in Delhi.

  • 5 years ago

    Would love to try my hand at sourdough, with all those flavorful things it supposedly turns out..Sorry that it did not take off, next time for sure!
    Your macs look colorful and tempting, am really lucky to have these from you on my Blogiversary party table! Thank you so much!

    Hate to whine, but I seriously dislike holidays, it throws me completely off-balance! Are the kids hungry or hungry, and all day!!!

  • 5 years ago

    I love the Lebkuchen spice, how creative. I have been meaning to start a sour dough culture too this break and you have reminded me. Good luck with yours and Happy New Year.

  • Simone
    5 years ago

    While I love the sound of those macarons, the star of the show is Coco!! That Christmas hat is just sooo adorable!

  • I’ve had continual sour dough woes so sympathise! Currently reading A Christmas Carol and othe Christmas writings (I adore Dickens). Have a very Happy New Year.

  • 5 years ago

    These are fabulous Deeba. Sorry about Scrooge 🙁 but these beautiful flavored macarons must have made you so happy. I just tucked a packet of lebkuchengewürtz into my suitcase as we are traveling back to NYC from Germany tomorrow. Now I have a nice recipe to use it up! Love the pix of your beautiful daughter and the pup. Happy New Year.

  • 5 years ago

    The flavours in your macarons sound absolutely amazing…. and never mind about Scrooge, they more than make up for it!

  • Crystal
    5 years ago

    This cookie are look delicious..I like also the colors..Thanks for sharing to us..Its good for holiday season..

  • 5 years ago

    Sweetheart, would you call me Scrooge if I say that I would rather you find feet and perfect macs than perfect sourdough bread? Bah, humbug! These macs are fabulous in flavor, color and holiday festiveness!!! And when I showed JP the pics of your dog with the Santa cap on, shaking my head in dismay for the poor, unsuspecting doggy, he said “Look what you did to your dog!!!” reminding me of the photo of Marty in tiny reindeer antlers I posted on Facebook! Ha ha ha! Merry Christmas!!! And, dear Deeba, wishing you, The Man, the Lad and the Teen a very very Happy Holiday Season and Joyous New Year! xoxo

  • 5 years ago

    I was trapped when I saw caption about failed sourdough. I am very keen to try it out here in India. I am collecting all sorts of success stories, but I am also curious to know about failed attempts. That teaches us not to get disillusioned , right?

    Please go ahead and write about your further attempts too. With your permission, I will keep reading your blog.


  • 5 years ago

    I was attracted to failed sour dough tale.

    I am interested in making it , and welcome ideas on how much it can fail, before it can happen.


  • 5 years ago

    I have much failure stories on bread, but your macarons are to die for. I should try this out soon. Great blog.

  • 5 years ago

    I want a few of these gorgeous macarons, I’m so afraid to bake them myself! The color and mention of spices is so tempting me.

    Wish you a fab New Year Deeba. Best wishes to your lovely family too!

  • 5 years ago


  • Deeba, oh why did that sourdough story sound so funny but bet you weren’t laughing at the time. Sorry to hear about Scrooge. By jolly, though – these macarons of yours are incredible! What an amazing combination with the caramel and ‘parfum’ of garam masala – I have to try this! Sounds too yummy. Here’s to many more adventurous macarons like this in 2012, Deeba, and wishing you all the best for a happy and healthy New Year!

    • 5 years ago

      You are sweet Jill and its been wonderful having you over at Mactweets with your amazing creations.
      I have tried to leave a comment several times on your holiday macarons, and can’t see it come through. Hopefully I’m not spamming you with several comments… but here is what I attempted to write
      “Hi again. Just wrote a long comment and I think it got eaten up. Here I go again. I have always wanted to use chestnut cream in macarons and your are pretty as they are perfect; delicious sounding too. Lucky Santa…Hic!! Thank you for joining us with these delighful creations at Mactweets. Love the way you incorporated our colour, flavour and holiday call into them Jill. Have a wonderful new year!!”

  • Love the story because we all have them and it just makes us more bonded! I know I’ve said it before but also love the dog and that photo of your child and the dog. Gorgeous!

    You rescued all of it with the macarons. Your crown remains intact…especially with salted caramel buttercream? Oh my.

  • 5 years ago

    Deeba they look great! I missed this month’s DB challenge as well with all the traveling and not being able to stick to a place for more than a few days, it was impossible to start on the sourdough. I will be working on it now that I am back home! Happy Holidays!

    • 5 years ago

      Thanks S. My sourdough starter finally caught the big bad mould…and died! Will try in better weather I guess. Do tell me if you have luck with yours. For now, I am cooling my heels.
      Have a great 2012!

  • 5 years ago

    Coco with a Santa hat is fabulous! I’m sure your next attempt at sourdough will go perfectly. And, your macarons look lovely. The garam masala flavor sounds great!

  • 5 years ago

    I love your blog. have been following it for a while. Its very, very , very inspiring- especially for a novice blogger like me.
    The macaroons have been particularly motivating. I am going to definitely try some soon.

    • 5 years ago

      You make me SMILE Tanya. Thank you for those wonderful thoughts!

  • foodwanderings
    5 years ago

    Aww Deeba. I completely understand. Yeast was not cooperative but instead you gave us these gorgeous masala macs as a treat. Wanted to drop by and wush you, your family and the pup A Happy New Year. Real excited for 2012 we might meet you never know! 🙂

  • 5 years ago

    These macaroons are definitely a great compensation for your misfortunes with the Scrooge 😉 – they are just beautiful! I wonder what that caramel salted butter caramel buttercream tastes like.
    I just finished making buttercream for your Sans Rival cake – it’s standing in the fridge waiting for the New Year’s meal :-). Can’t wait to try..
    Thanks so much for all these wonderful recipes and beautiful inspiring blog. Happy 2012, Deeba!

  • 5 years ago

    Ohh your coco is adorable i want give a tight cuddle. and gorgeous Macarons what a treat for senses. Wishing you and your family a joyful year hear 🙂

  • 5 years ago

    Hi Deeba….
    Sorry to hear about the sourdough….. But I must confess I feel slightly better after reading your post.
    My sour dough went kaput as well…… As actually I’m not even sure if my starter was active enough or not !!
    I bake breads often and was completely heartbroken at my failure on the sourdough !! I assume or rather I want to believe it is the weather !!
    Better luck to us next time…..

  • 5 years ago

    Wish you and your family a Very Happy New Year !!
    Looking forward to many more delicious readings from you !!

    Cheers !

  • 5 years ago

    I hope you can make your sourdough work next time. I’m hoping to try it for the first time soon. Your macarons look absolutely amazing though and salted caramel filling is my favourite in macarons. Your dog looks adorable.

  • Stunning stunning macs Deeba. I love the flavours AND colours of these. And any post with Coco in it is a winner in my book! Here’s to FEET all year long!

  • 5 years ago

    What an adorable doggie! What an interesting flavor those must have had! I would love to try one of each 🙂

  • meenakshi
    4 years ago

    hello mam, i have failed twice in macron test,read your note, i have conventionaL OTG ,should i also follow the same method that you have told to bake and please tell me what does the double baking try means? hope for the reply.
    thanks in anticipation.

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