Look what this lucky gal got for her birthday! Flown all the way from NYC. When I went to Paris back in 2007, I wasn't big on macarons at all. In fact, I'm not sure I've even tried them before that trip. But we did walk into a Laduree store when in Paris because the store itself is gorgeous, but we didn't actually buy any macarons. It wasn't until my trip to Toronto and Montreal in 2009 with KDer that I started to find an interest in these colourful sweets. We mapped out a "bakery walk" (I've forgotten in which district of Toronto), and a group of us had spent a day walking from bakery to bakery in this little area, sampling macarons and other mini desserts. We made our way to Montreal and came home with a huge box of macarons from La Maison Du Macaron. Since then, I've been hooked.
Now, I'm not super crazy about macarons. I don't personally think they're a must-have to-die-for kind of sweets. But I do appreciate them. After helping out my friend, Kat, make many batches of macarons and learning about the secrets to making them, (one being time), I've come to admire their delicateness and beauty. Besides trying to achieve that perfect soft almond-flavoured shell with a chewy inside,and making sure there's "feet" to the shells (meaning height), being able to come up with an intense, enjoyable flavour also requires skill. And to be honest, I've tried a lot of macaron shops locally, and nothing really stands out. (I still think Kat makes some of the best macarons when it comes to local choices).
And then of course, there's Laduree and Pierre Herme from Paris.
I'm a sucker for packaging. I appreciate quality and beauty, and the thought that goes into presentation. How elegant is this box? It's gorgeous.
What was inside was even better. The flavours of each macaron, even so simple as lemon, pistacchio, chocolate, and raspberry, are all super intense. And I love that about them... simple flavours. The texture of not just the shell but the filling is amazing. From jelly, to cream, to marshmallow fluff. I now know why Laduree is so popular when it comes to macarons. I think I can say they are the best macarons I've had so far.
The best part isn't the fact that I got not only one, but two, boxes of Laduree macarons. Of course, what was better than finally being able to try out these macarons, is knowing unexpectedly that someone thought of you while they were away. Gah, I'm special. I know it 'cause family and friends always make me feel that way. I'm one lucky gal. Thanks, KDer!