|From Paulette in San Francisco|
The cupcake trend that I gushed over last fall got moving back in 2005. Now, it's everywhere: Food Network shows, catering companies, entire blogs devoted to cupcakes.
What is next on the horizon?
More then one expert is saying that the next dessert "it girl" is going to be the macaron. What, though, is a macaron? For those who don't regularly watch shows like Gossip Girl or read "O";
|Or watched Marie Antoinette lately...|
"The macaron...is a dainty French cream-filled sandwich cookie which, in its best form, will fill your soul with warm, fuzzy happiness after one bite. "--Robyn Lee, Serious EatsIn more technical terms, it is a pair of light, crisp almond cookies with a filling in the middle. It is not the same as a macaroon...those coconut and egg white cookies everyone's Jewish grandmother bakes at Passover.
|One of these pictures is not like the others...|
As Lee goes on to show(with diagrams) the almond meal should be finely ground for a light cookie, and just the right amount of filling is an art. Like a haiku, this strict form compliments and highlights the dizzying array of flavors available, ranging from traditional french staples such as raspberry or chocolate, to exotics like rose hips and lemongrass. Just check out the site of the Macaron Cafe in New York City! Many of the flavors that are most popular have come to major U.S. cities by way of Japan, where macaron trend hit first and has inspired everything from children's toys to food jewelry.
|Ahhh...kawaii desu ne....|
Another difficulty is how hard it can be for these treats to be made by the home cook. Unlike cupcakes, which were already a staple waiting for a makeover, these treats need very careful preparation and even oven temperature, meaning that even the most careful cook can be thwarted by an old oven. That does not mean that it's impossible, though, either...just difficult. If you want some help, Amazon has a least 9 different macaron cookbooks right now, with more on the way.
|Or you can try the instructions at Giverslog.com|
|Green Tea macarons from Les Madeleines cafe and patisserie in Salt Lake City.|