This small 6 inch x 6 inch paperback is much like a macaron: small, but packing a huge punch. 

A beautiful little package that delights with each turn of the page, I predict Macarons
is going to become the go-to gift-giving idea this year for all who love these tiny pillows of sweetness. For me, it has gone to the top of my cook book pile. 

Even more than being a cook book, it is a story. It is about a young Parisian chef and her husband who dreamed of living in the Big Apple and made their dream come true. They opened a small cafe/bakery in New York City dedicated to the macaron cookie and never looked back, fueled by a macaron craze that has swept through the sweet world.

When I was traveling throughout Europe in 2010, I was taken aback by the macaron craze there. It seemed everywhere I went chocolate makers were adding on macarons to their repetoire. La Duree in Paris spread to satelite outposts in French department stores and to London. The Salon du Chocolat (the Parisian chocolate trade show) was as much about macarons as it was about chocolate. And bakeries were showcasing multi-colored macaron towers in their windows.

I love them. So naturally I would love this little cook book. They are one of my favorite cookies, especially if they are not too sweet. And there are so many flavors to explore in making them: from green tea to rose to pistachio to whatever your imagination can come up with.

I like the way this particular book is organized. The first part teaches you how to make the macaron shells, and the second part teaches you how to make all the fillings that go in the center…including ganache, buttercreams, and jams.

The only thing you should keep in mind is that before you can use the recipes you will have to accumulate certain ingredients that perhaps are not readily available in your local food store. However, they are easily available online. For instance, you will need to order gel paste food coloring, powdered egg whites, almond flour or almond meal (all available online from King Arthur Flour), and a good candy thermometer and food scale.

If you can’t wait to make your own and you live near NYC, you can visit the author’s bakery: MacarOn Cafe, 625 Madison Avenue at 59th Street, New York, New York, or at their other location at 485 7th Avenue at 36th Street, New York, New York, where they not only have macarons for sale but serve French cafe food and sandwiches.

 

Yet one more reason to love Catherine de Medici (one of my favorite historical figures)! Rumor has it that she was responsible for introducing macarons to France! Merci, Catherine! And merci, Cecile Cannone for producing a macarons cook book Catherine de Medici would have approved of!
Macarons by Cecile Cannone (Ulysses Press, 2011)

 

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3 Comments on this article. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Julie C. February 20, 2011 at 12:01 pm -

    Wow!
    These look devine.
    I am originally from Brooklyn, NY & I go to NYC periodically to visit my family. I will be sire to check out the Macaron Cafe.
    Thanks to Our Mom Spot for directing me to this fabulous blog!

  2. Hillary Davis February 20, 2011 at 6:17 pm -

    Thank you!!!!!!!!!

  3. Hillary Davis February 24, 2011 at 1:34 pm -

    @Julie, let me know how you like them!

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