Lesson in French Cookies
Many chefs think they must pipe the meringues into perfect rounds to avoid dreaded peaks. But this kind of piping takes years of practice. Payard shows Wu a smarter way: He pipes them out roughly, taps the tray on the table a few times, then lets them dry for anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour, depending on the humidity. The tapping and drying give the cookies a protective skin and allow them to settle into perfect rounds all by themselves.