Thursday, February 26, 2009

Merci Paris

A good friend came into town from Switzerland last night, so a feast was in order. I baked freshly made ricotta with herbs, got crazy with the mandoline for a salad of fennel, apple, and scallions, and grilled skirt steak in the kitchen, setting off only three fire alarms. A nice meal, yet nothing mattered in comparison with what was in store for desert.

One of the guests, another friend, had arrived from Paris yesterday. In her hands were a red box from Pierre Hermes, filled with macarons.

Throughout the wine, laughing, eating, talking, deep down I was waiting so quietly and patiently in my seat for those little jewels to be opened.

My friend chose an array of flavors which combinations proved not weird once bitten-- white truffle (the savory, not sweet), wasabi and grapefruit, green matcha tea and chestnut, passion fruit and chocolate, caramel and sea salt, dark chocolate, and vanilla.

They dusted some of the macarons with a shimmer dust, similar to what I use on my flowers and cakes. A must be...that I make some macaroons.

Macarons traditionally are made using a circle template, so each one fits as a sandwich perfectly. But what about doing something sweet and homemade, like heart shaped macarons? I think this might be the perfect cookie that I want to make for Ruby's birthday, this Monday. Her birthday party will be the following week, and no crazy cakes need to be baked until then. Perhaps something simple and childlike for the flavoring, strawberry with a splash of rosewater for a je ne sais quoi feeling?

If Pierre Herme were trapped in my body, a Jewish mom in Brooklyn, I think he would make these:

Rose macaron with strawberry pastry cream. Perfect for a two year old named Ruby Josephine.
Pictures to come, once hangover ebbs and pastry cream chills.

PS: The spelling for macaron is French, if it were spelled macaroon it would be refrencing those shredded coconut ball deserts.

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