Reviews and Other Stuff

gluten-free french macarons

Mango Float Recipe

mango float dessert


If you find yourself opening and reopening that refrigerator door constantly, well, you are not alone. This whole pandemic situation is making us crave for snacks and sweets. I, for one, is guilty of that. Lately, my local Costco has stocked up on some good fresh mango fruits, so, I’ve got a new mango recipe to share with you in this post.


As you all know, my favorite fruit is mango, and I’m obsessed about finding different ways of preparing and presenting this amazing and delicious fruit. You can even search this blog for more mango recipe ideas once you’re done trying this recipe that I’m about to show you.


This recipe is perfect for this warm weather and is also perfect for those who like fruity desserts. This will surely delight anyone with a sweet tooth, and even for those who don’t like their desserts to be very sweet. Also, this recipe is very quick and very easy to do and this doesn’t really require special preparation. All you need to do is to learn the art of layering. Excited to know how? Read below.


Preparation Time: 30 – 40 minutes




mango float ingredients list


1 box Graham crackers

Graham cracker crumbs

1/2 can condensed milk

1 box whipping cream

5-6 pcs thinly-sliced mangoes




how to make mango float dessert


8×8 Baking Pan (glass/ceramic)

spatula/pie cutter

whisk/electric mixer

clear glass bowl




mango float making


In a glass bowl, mix a whole box of whipping cream along with 1/2 can of condensed milk, then whisk several times. Ideally, you can and should use an electric mixer to make the mixture thicker. I already packed mine since I’m moving very soon, so, I only have the whisk available.


mango float how to


mango float recipe ingredients graham crackers


Arrange the Graham crackers as well as you can in an 8×8 baking pan. This is going to be a challenge because you may have to cut the Grahams carefully in order to fit it to the size of the baking pan.


steps in making mango float dessert


Pour in the whipping cream and condensed milk mixture on top of the Graham crackers. Spread it using the spatula.


how to make mango float dessert


Slowly place each Mango slice on top of the mixture.


easy mango float


Repeat the process by putting in another layer of Graham crackers, whipping+condensed milk mixture, and slices of mangoes.


You can stop after the second layer which is what this recipe is meant for, or you can continue up to the third layer or more.


And you’re done. Cover the pan with a clear wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or store it in the freezer.


You can sprinkle some Graham Cracker crumbs on top of the mangoes (optional).


quick mango float recipe


This recipe is good for 5-9 people if served in small slices. If you’re feeling like not sharing, then it’s only good for one (lol), because this dessert is so good that it melts in your mouth and it’ll almost taste like a one of a kind ice cream. It’s something you don’t always get to taste often, and it’s unique and unforgettable in that sense. However, always remember what the Spice Girls said, “too much of something is bad enough” so, try to balance your sweet cravings with some brisk walks and some cardio. Alrighty?


Happy hot Summer!





Simple Homemade Sushi Recipe (Pandemic Style)

homemade sushi


As a sushi lover, I had been making my own homemade Sushi even before the lockdown, although that doesnโ€™t mean I donโ€™t miss my favorite Japanese restaurant nowadays. Speaking of things I miss, I certainly miss my life pre-quarantine. I feel like “those were the days”, back when life’s mundane activities involved having to go to the grocery store while lazily choosing for goods, but nowadays, going to the grocery feels like a matter of survival in different aspects. Anyway, I hope this will all end soon and that we will finally be able to pick up the activities and plans where we last left off. All is not lost and all is not broken. In the meantime, let me distract you again with my simple Sushi Recipe.


This Sushi recipe, by all means, and by its title (sorry about that), obviously is not perfect. This Sushi is made of brown rice instead of white rice or Sushi rice. It’s been pretty difficult for me to find some white rice lately, even more so the ideal Sushi rice. Last time I checked, my local grocery stores ran out of rice and Amazon didn’t have much affordable rice to sell as well. Yep, this is the kind of reality we’re in right now. So, I made use of the brown rice in my pantry. I promise you though that this recipe tastes very much like white rice Sushi and I will tell you how and why. Anyway, I’ve also read somewhere before that the early versions of Sushi were made with brown rice. If that’s the case, then my recipe can’t be that bad, right? lol.


how to do sushi


Apart from using brown rice, my ingredients aren’t exactly the freshest. As you can see below, my cucumber doesn’t look like a cucumber anymore lol, and that’s because I froze it. Because of this Pandemic, I have been freezing most of my fruits and vegetables, as well as milk. Times are hard, so we have to resourceful and creative. Additionally, a couple of my ingredients here are on the verge of expiration, so I have to use them soon. I wish I could do this recipe with better, fresher, and varied ingredients, but rest assured that the concept of Sushi-making retains in this recipe, even though I’m not really a Sushi expert. Note: The measurements for this recipe are very flexible. You can adjust it however you like. Also, this Sushi recipe can serve 2-3 people.




simple sushi ingredients


2-4 Sushi Nori sheets

1/2 to 1 cup rice wine or sweetened Sake

Ideally: 2-3 cups of steamed White Rice/Sushi Rice/Jasmine Rice, Pandemic: Brown Rice or any kind of rice will do

shrimp/raw fish/smoked salmon (in this recipe, I’m using steamed shrimp)

3 pcs small cucumber

Umami sauce

Unagi sauce

Soy sauce

Wasabi paste

Sesame seeds (for garnish)


sushi ingredients




Sushi roller

sharp knife

cutting board





Cook brown rice using rice cooker or saucepan. Make sure to have enough water in it. Ideally, it should have more water than when you’re normally cooking white rice. The goal is to soften the brown rice.


Mix with your hands 2 cups of cooked brown rice with 1 cup rice wine or sweetened sake. You can also reduce the amount of rice wine if it’s too strong for you, although this type of wine is actually quite sweet and aromatic. Set aside.


Steam the Shrimp and slice it lengthwise.


Slice cucumber lengthwise.


Place one Sushi Nori sheet on top of the wooden Sushi roller.


Using a spoon, carefully pile some rice, a bit of cucumber and shrimp along one side of the Nori sheet (the one closest to you). See photo below.


With the Sushi roller as a guide, start rolling the Nori sheet slowly while running your fingers all over the roller to make sure that you stabilize the ingredients inside and that you create a firm roll.

simple sushi recipe

With a sharp knife, cut the long roll to make sushi slices.

sushi-making guide

Arrange the sushi and garnish with sesame seeds, together with Umami sauce and Unagi sauce if you have these. If you don’t, it’s ok. The sushi will still taste great.


Serve with Wasabi paste and Soy sauce.


sushi how to




*An alternative to this recipe would be to place the rice first before you place the Nori sheets. This way, the Sushi will look aesthetically pleasing.


Do you also love Sushi? What’s your favorite type?






Homemade (Gluten-Free) French Macarons with Low-Histamine Fillings

how to make basic french macarons


Hello everyone! A few weeks ago, I celebrated my birthday and instead of receiving gifts and organizing a party, I decided to do my usual birthday tradition, which is to disappear in the kitchen and cook or bake for my family and friends. In other words, my birthdays are usually not a time for receiving, but instead, a time for giving. So, for this year, I decided to take on the challenge, which is to make my dreaded French Macarons. I finally did it and I will tell you in this post how I made it and how you can make your own delicious French Macarons at home.


french macarons 101


I must admit that it took me some time and some practice to figure these finicky pastries out. Well, I did some sort of experiment on a bunch of ingredients first, like making my macarons sugar-free, vegan, and low-histamine. But good Lord, there was no way on earth I could do these things since macarons rely on real sugar for their structure. Neither Xylitol nor Stevia could do that. Also, I couldn’t figure out how to make a decent macaron using Aquafaba a.k.a AquaFabulous (a brine or leftover liquid from a chickpea/garbanzo can which simulate real egg whites). So, if you have some tips on how to successfully make macarons using this specific ingredient, please let me know. However, the fillings in this French Macaron recipe are definitely low-histamine, and since macarons are made of almond flour, they’re of course, gluten-free.


There are several ways to do French Macarons (there’s even an Italian way), and it’s true that making these fickle pastries do require patience, timing, right weather, right temperature, right measurements, right equipments, and heck right mood and energy because these macarons can play tricks on you and you could be at your wits’ end before you’d totally figure it out. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t do it. As the saying goes “Practice makes perfect, but then again, nobody’s perfect, so why practice? LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyway, here’s how I did my French Macarons and read what has worked for me below.



(Most of the ingredients and the materials used in this recipe can be found in Amazon. You can click directly on the list below.)






1 cup Powdered (Confectioners’) Sugar

3/4 cup Almond Flour




2 Egg Whites (room temperature)

1/4 cup Caster Sugar (finer than granulated sugar)

Food Color

1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar

Pinch of Salt




2 Sticks Unsalted Butter or 1/4 cup (softened, room temperature)

1/4 cup Powdered Sugar

Food Color


Low-Histamine Flavors:

ย ย ย  1/2 cup Mango puree (Golden Yellow)

ย ย ย  1/2 cup Apple puree (Red)

ย ย ย  1/2 cup Blueberry puree (Teal)

ย ย ย  2 tbsp Espresso Decaf Coffee (done through Nespresso machine) (Brown)

ย ย ย  1 tbsp Peppermint Extract (Green)

ย ย ย  1/2 cup Melon puree (Copper/Orange)




Stand or Handheld Mixer

Food Processor

Mesh Strainer

Oven Thermometer

Mixing Bowls

Silicone Spatula

Measuring Cups

Measuring Spoons

Piping Tips

Pastry Bags

Silicone Macaron Mat or Parchment Paper

Baking Pans or Nonstick Cookie Sheets

Cooling Racks

Macaron box from PACKHOME (for packaging 12 macarons)

Paper Doilies (to line the Macaron box)

Ribbons (to decorate Macaron box)

Recipe Cards (from Brittany Fuson Paper)




french macarons egg white ingredients


Set aside 2 eggs and make sure they’re in room temperature. To bring refrigerated eggs to a room temp, put them in hot water.


Dry Ingredients:


french macarons mixing dry ingredients


1. In a Food Processor, mix 1 cup Powdered/Confectioners’ Sugar and 3/4 cup Almond Flour for about 5 seconds, then stop. Manually mix with a spoon to make sure all areas are completely mixed. Do this alternate mixing three times.


french macarons sifting dry ingredients


2. Sieve the Dry Ingredients using a mesh strainer and carefully throw away the large particles. Set aside.


Wet Ingredients (Meringue):


1. Once eggs are warm, separate the egg whites from the egg yolks. Do this very carefully. You can use your hands or you can use a spoon. We only need the egg whites.


egg meringue


2. Using a handheld or stand mixer, slowly whisk/mix the egg whites until they become frothy or bubbly. Add in 1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar and a pinch of salt. Continue mixing. Then slowly add 1/4 cup Caster/Fine Sugar.


3. Keep whisking/mixing progressively the Meringue until it starts to look thick and white.


how to add food color french macarons


4. Add Food Color


how to achieve stiff peaks in meringue french macarons



5. Gradually increase the speed of whisking until the Meringue looks glossy/shiny and develops stiff peaks. Its peaks should not ย  fall over or curve. One way to tell is to lift the whisk and make sure it looks stiff at the tips resembling a bird’s beak. Once it does, stop whisking.


6. Mixing Wet & Dry Ingredients (Macaronage):


fluffy meringue with stiff peaks french macarons


mixing wet and dry ingredients french macarons


how to mix wet and dry ingredients french macarons


7. Mix the Dry Ingredients (Almond Flour + Sugar) with the Wet Ingredients (Egg whites etc., Meringue) using a flexible spatula (silicone ones). You can mix half of the dry ingredients first into the bowl of fluffy yet stiff Meringue. Then mix in a circular motion while cutting through and folding over the batter. This is to minimize bubble formation.


how to macaronage


french macarons how to



how to tell if batter is ready for french macarons


8. Finish adding and mixing the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. The batter should start to look like Lava or Sand Mixture and your arm should start to hurt from all the mixing by this time, LOL. I don’t really count the number of mixture to achieve the ideal batter consistency because it’s easy to overlook it or make a mistake that way. Instead, I LOOK at it, because you know what they say “To see is to believe”, LOL. Here’s my cue: If the batter (Macaronage) runs continuously and could form into a ribbon or like a figure 8 without breaking, then you’re doing great. BUT, it should settle back or sink into the batter within 30 seconds (I use my phone’s timer). Once it does, then stop right then and there.


pasty bag and piping tips read to pipe out french macarons


preparing macaronage batter for piping


9. Place the batter (Macaronage) into a pastry bag with a piping tip. Make sure you twist the bag on top of the tip to prevent the batter from going through directly and spilling all over the counter.


piping out the batter for french macarons


10. On a Silicone Macaron Mat or Parchment Paper resting on a Baking Pan or Cookie Sheet, pipe out the batter straight through (90ยฐ angle).


drying french macarons batter


11. Bang the pan/tray against the counter several times (as many times as you like, really) in order to bring the bubbles to the surface. Pop the visible bubbles on the surface using a toothpick and bang the tray again to make the batter more even.


french macaron skin after 1 hour


12. Let the batter rest for 1 hour or more. It will start to develop a skin which you can touch lightly on your finger and it won’t stick. It will also look shiny and feels dry. I like to rest mine in a cool dry area, preferably close to my AC.


oven thermometer for macaron baking


13. Bake for 15-18 minutes at 300 ยฐF or 150 ยฐC.


14. Notice the macarons developing feet.


french macarons with feet


15. Carefully lift the Silicone Macaron Mat from the pan and put it on the cooling rack. Let it cool for 30-40 minutes. Then slowly peel each macaron shell off the mat and put it on another cooling rack to continuously cool and dry.


16. Refrigerate for storage


Buttercream Fillings


1. Whisk 1/4 cup or 2 sticks of Unsalted, Softened, Room Temperature, Butter


2. Add 1/4 cup Powdered Sugar on it


Add the following Low-Histamine fillings: (I used fresh ingredients for this recipe).




how to make apple puree french macaron filling



how to make melon puree french macaron filling


french macaron blueberry flavor filling


– Cut the Melon/Apple/Mango into thin slices or in cubes, and put them in a saucepan with a cup of water. Bring them to a boil and mash them once soft, turning into a puree. Use 1/2 cup or more according to your preference. For Blueberries, you can mash them directly through a strainer if they’re ripe and soft, separating the skin from the juice. If they’re too hard, you can bring them to a boil with a bit of water.


how to make mango puree french macaron filling


Peppermint/Decaf Coffee


– Use 1 tbsp peppermint/mint extract and add it to the butter with sugar. For Decaf Coffee filling, I used my Nespresso machine and used one decaf pod. I only needed 2 tbsp of it and it gives a concentrated coffee taste. I then added it to my mixture of butter and sugar.


– You can add some food color to your fillings according to their taste or flavor.


piping out french macaron filling


– Pipe out the fillings into one macaron shell and look for its pair.


– Store in refrigerator for 3 days, or in the freezer for 6 months.


– Macarons should taste crunchy on the outside and chewy inside.


Important Things to Consider


Macarons taste better as they age, that is after the next day or so.


In my experience, there are four crucial times that could literally make or break a macaron. First, the Meringue (egg white mixture/wet ingredients) should achieve stiff peaks. Second, mixing the batter is very important. It needs to form a ribbon or a figure 8 and it should also sink into the batter within 30 seconds time. You can’t overmix. Third, check your oven temperature. It’s good to always have an oven thermometer whenever you bake these temperamental beings, LOL. And lastly, bang that tray against the counter, or better yet, drop it on the floor, LOL, but be very careful when doing that. These will help the macarons develop feet and prevent excessive air bubbles which could give you problems during baking.


Silicone Mat vs Parchment Paper? For now, I’m baking with silicone mats because I like that they come in predrawn circular patterns. I’m not good at eyeballing my macaron shapes yet. Also, silicones tend to hold the macaron’s round shape better than the parchment paper. However, silicones don’t dry the macarons completely, and that means the macaron’s bottom could stick to them pretty easily. Parchment paper really dries the macarons which makes them easy to be peeled off.


You can dry the macarons for more than 1 hour. The drier they get, the better they’ll turn out to be.


If you’re not gonna fill them up with fillings immediately, you can store macaron shells on top of each other separated by a parchment paper to prevent them from sticking together


There are several options for fillings and you can do them however you want.


To achieve a smooth top macaron shell, always sift almond flour and powdered sugar after mixing them


Use gel food color since it won’t fade during baking


vegan homemade french macarons


Troubleshooting Guide


If your macarons are lopsided or its feet are imbalanced, your oven type or your oven temperature could be the culprit, and probably your baking pan as well. Use an oven thermometer and use an Airbake Cookie Sheet to bake the macarons because it allows for an even distribution of temperature when baking.


If your macarons have nipples. No joke, this happens a lot. The batter could be too thick and was undermixed or you didn’t bang the tray/pan more. It could also be that you’re using a narrow piping tip. Use a wide-opening piping tip and bang that tray against the counter. Drop it like it’s hot. LOL.


If your macarons have zits, LOL, you know those pesky bumps that appear after you bang the pan/tray and they look like tiny breakouts? Pop them with a toothpick and bang the tray again to make the batter’s texture more even.


If macarons don’t develop feet, there must be a problem with the way you mixed your batter or you forgot to bang the tray. Also, measure your ingredients accurately.


Cracked macarons? you must’ve overbeaten the egg whites (Meringue) or you probably undermixed the batter (Macaronage) which could also make the macarons hollow.


If your macaron batter didn’t dry after one hour, check your place’s humidity level.


These macarons are probably the most challenging pastries I’ve ever baked, but they’re also the most fulfilling because I received a lot of positive feedback from my friends and family who have tasted them. They’re not that hard to make, but they do require a ton of time and patience. Be ready to spend long hours when making these and be prepared to lose your temper (hope not, LOL), and don’t be afraid to experiment, because just as when you think you’re ready to throw in the towel, it’s when you realized you’ve finally figured it out.


homemade french macarons with low histamine filling


Happy macaron-making!