What is a Macaron?European Macaron vs MacarOOn?
European Macarons (mah-kah-ROHN) are an iconic food item in Europe. A MacarOOn is a coconut based cookie popular in US and UK.
Macarons are delicate meringue pastry cookies, gluten-free made of almond flour, sugar and egg whites. The decadent fillings are made with high quality chocolate, seasonal fruit or savory ingredients such as foie gras. (Right: Bon Macs! Espresso & Citron)
Macarons are well known in Italy, France and Switzerland. All three countries use different meringue techniques. The macaronage technique is an artisan craft and takes time and commitment to master.
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The finest modern day macarons in Paris are made by Pierre Hermé, Ladurée, Hugo & Victor, Christophe Felder and Carette.
Macaron HistoryThe word MACARON (mah-kah-ROHN) derives from the Italian maccherone and the Venetian macarone (meaning fine paste). Some have traced the French debut back to the arrival of Catherine de Medici's Italian pastry chefs whom she brought with her in 1533 upon marrying Henry II of France.
The macarons made in Nancy, France are best known. It is said that in the late eighteenth century, the abbess of Remiremont founded an order of nuns called, The Dames du Saint-Sacrement with strict dietary rules prohibiting the consumption of meat. Two nuns, Sisters Marguerite and Marie-Elisabeth, created the biscuit style, Nancy Macaron to fit their dietary requirements. They later sold them to make money and became known as, Les Soeurs Macarons (The Macaron Sisters).
In the 1930s, the Paris Macaron was created by Pierre Desfontaines of the French Pâtisserie Ladurée. In Zurich, Switzerland, Richard Sprungli first sold his Swiss version called, Luxemburgerli or Luxembourger which is more airy in consistency. Click here to Contact
*My appreciation for the craft of European Macarons began while waiting in long lines at the Pierre Herme and Laduree Macaron shops in Paris (more photos on About page).