Sunday, February 27, 2011

Macarons, My Mystery Solved

( Finally, macarons! One got damaged in transport. It didn't alter the enjoyment though. )

Not long after I changed my blog format last April (to food, beverages & pairing from winemaking) I noticed a lot of posts in blogs I was new about macarons. What are these things? Why does everyone care about them?

I kept reading and couldn’t make much sense of it. I asked around to my friends and nobody had ever heard of them or had had them. Stumped. I finally asked a fellow food blogger (thanks Mardi!) and was told that if I had never had one I couldn’t appreciate the wonderful textures and flavors. Oh, and they were really hard to make.

I tucked all of this in the back of my brain and figured I would come across them someday and could try them to see what all the fuss was about. You won’t catch me making them as I don’t really get into desserts and confections.

On the way back from L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue last week we had to make a quick stop at a boulangerie to pick up some bread for our next meal. I wandered into the shop with my friends just to see what they might have. And there in the case was the glow of yellow, pink and green macarons. My opportunity had come. When it was my turn to order I stepped up and uttered “vente macarons s’il vous plait”. A question was returned and the only thing I got (I don’t speak French well) was the word mélange. Oui, une mélange s’il vous plait. I definitely wanted a mix of all the flavors.

Back at the house I took some pictures of my treat and set them aside for dessert. With the meal finished Francoise brought them to the table and we all dug in.

( They really were pretty to look at, and oh so flavorful. )

The lemon, berry and pistachio (we think) treats with thin hard shells and a soft interiors delighted us all. I now understand what Mardi was getting at. They were damn good and clearly require experience to make well. I guess the smile from the bakery owner was for me as an expression of happiness that I was so interested in a treats they had made.

So with that mystery solved I will now move on to something else…




Ian Bennet - Isaaks of Salem said...

No photos or explanations in depth of the dessert. No wine pairing? I must be missing something here!

Ian Bennet - Isaaks of Salem said...

Great colors but where are the wine pairings? Where is the detailed textual description and analogous flavors of the macaroon? I know you can give us more.

Jill Colonna said...

Hi Jason,
So glad to hear you finally got to taste them. They're so beautifully vibrant! Just to say they're SO much easier to make yourself than you think (and you can make pistachio taste like pistachio. ;-)
Can I dare to suggest "Mad About Macarons! Make Macarons Like the French". Believe it or not I've also suggested beverage pairings for each recipe, so would be dying to hear what you think.
More details are at

Kate @ said...

I love love love macarons! I have Jill's book, Mad About Macarons, and I drool each time that I open it!

Beautiful photos!

Tastemonials said...

I'd had one little macaron in a food and wine pairing, but my big introduction was in Switzerland at the beginning of this month. Delightful and pretty!

veggietestkitchen said...

the macarons are so beautiful. so bright and how were they taste wise? just as good? thanks for sharing this picture. cheers.

Evan @swEEts said...

I just bought a box of macarons from a pastry shop in Austin this weekend :) Delish! Now I'm going to attempt to make them!!