I don’t exactly recall when I started seeing macarons being served as one of the pastries at almost every afternoon tea I was going to – several years ago at least. I’m not sure if anything specific precipitated this trend, except perhaps simply that macarons themselves were becoming a food trend, they have the look of a special treat which goes with afternoon tea, and everyone wanted to serve their version at tea.
Not to mention, a macaron can take on just about any flavor with almond flour and powder sugar as the palette. Which means they can be adapted to any theme, spice, season, or baker’s whim.
Regardless of how it started, or how it has become a tradition in the past few years, in my opinion, there’s really hardly a time that is not a good time to eat a macaron!
I’d always heard it said they are very difficult and temperamental to make, which sounds like a challenge to me, so I was determined to try making them for myself.
My first couple of home attempts were – shall we say – less than successful! So the next step was to take a class from someone who knew what they were doing; or simply turn in my macaron apron, so to speak, and be content with buying them from those who knew better.
The best macarons I’ve found in Houston are from Macaron by Patisse, so imagine my delight to find they offer classes for us home bakers, for which I promptly signed up.
Full disclosure: I’m sharing a handful of pictures from the class, but will add a recipe only after I’ve had a chance to try it again at home and play with my own flavors. Kind of feels like cheating if I haven’t actually been successful outside of the classroom!
And that was more or less basically it – two hours later, we had milk chocolate with chocolate ganache filling, lemon with mascarpone/lemon curd filling, strawberry with strawberry buttercream, and vanilla with vanilla bean buttercream. Absolutely scrumptious and not nearly so daunting to make, once one knows how.
Hopefully this piques your appetite to give macaron-making a try. Just bite the bullet (a little Texas lingo), give it a try and/or sign up for that class in your area, and see what flavors and colors you can come up with!
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