A delicate crust, sweet and crispy. Light, moist and creamy ganache on the inside. Candy-coloured and with flavours ranging from mimosa to lavender, macarons have become the most delicious new trend in double-decker foods since mini-hamburgers.
Perfect for the sweet-tooth sophisticate, macarons are a fantastic meringue -style cookie made with egg whites, sugar, and almond flour. Though primarily a French confection, their history can be traced back to Italian-born Catherine de’Medici in the 16th Century (the French spelling, macaron, is used to distinguish this dessert from the coconut macaroons which many readers will be familiar with). In 1930, Parisian chef Pierre Desfontaines of famous luxury pastry shop LadurÃ©e invented the double-decker format, which is how macarons are most often served today. It was this invention that first brought international attention to LadurÃ©e, where thousands of macarons are still sold daily. The truly observant will have noticed LadurÃ©e pastries in Sofia Coppola’s 2006 film Marie Antoinette – in one scene, Kirsten Dunst can be seen offering the famous macarons to Steve Coogan’s character, Ambassador Mercy.
Those with talent in the kitchen might like to try their hand at DIY-macarons, in which case Martha Stewart and Williams-Sonoma both have recipes which are bound to be tasty (my skills are not up to the challenge, so I’ll have to take their word for it – unless one of you readers would like to try and let us know!)
Is there any doubt that the rest of my day will be spent eating macarons from Toronto’s NadÃ¨ge Patisserie and watching Marie Antoinette? I think not.