The Grail of All Macarons. Pierre Herme, Macarons via Flickr

I am determined to make french macarons one of these days. Sure, I could pop on over to Pistacia Vera and buy them, but where's the fun (read: challenge) in that?

Oh, and just so we're clear...Macarons are not macaroons. A macaron is an 18th century French pastry, similar to that of a merengue, made from almond flower, confectioner's sugar, white sugar and egg whites. Take two of these little baked "cookies", sandwich between them a layer of filling, such as a ganache or buttercream, and voila! C'est macacron!

Flavors I'd like to try:

1. Hazelnut mocha (brown with brown filling)
2. Raspberry Chocolate (pink with brown filling)
3. Chocolate Peanut Butter (Yes, not traditionally French, but c'mon. It just works!)

What about non-cocoa variations? A simple vanilla cream with plain almond cookie would be nice. Pistachio? I'd love it, though I may be the only one. Maybe even banana buttercream in a coconut pastry? Is that too strange?

All I need is almond flour, parchment paper, patience and a killer recipe to get me started!


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