Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Top 10 French Macarons in New York City

Macaron is another very popular item found in New York City. There are many places opening offering original and unique flavor combinations. I had been looking at photos of macarons for quite a while, and they were on my list to try asap. They just looked so beautiful, yet light and airy. As we are now into 2013, I have tried many places in the city. I thought they deserved their own Top 10 list here on NYC, Style and a little Cannoli.

Here is a bit of history of the macaron, from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, in case you have never heard of them. My comments are in red:

A macaron (French pronunciation: ​[makaˈʁɔ̃] is a sweet meringue-based confectionery made with egg whites, icing sugar, granulated sugar, almond powder or ground almond, and food colouring. The macaron is commonly filled with ganache, buttercream or jam filling sandwiched between two cookies. Its name is derived from the Italian word maccarone or maccherone. (I am so glad Italy has something to do with these amazing little cakes!! Yay!!)
Although predominantly a French confection, there has been much debate about its origins. Larousse Gastronomique cites the macaron as being created in 1791 in a convent near Cormery. Some have traced its French debut back to the arrival of Catherine de' Medici's Italian pastry chefs whom she brought with her in 1533 upon marrying Henry II of France. ( love Catherine de’ Medici)
In the 1830s, macarons were served two-by-two with the addition of jams, liqueurs, and spices. The macaron as it is known today was called the "Gerbet" or the "Paris macaron" and was created in the early 20th Century by Pierre Desfontaines of the French pâtisserie Ladurée, composed of two almond meringue discs filled with a layer of buttercream, jam, or ganache filling. ( is ganache not the BEST thing in the world??)
The confectionery is characterised by its smooth, squared top, ruffled circumference (referred to as the "foot"), and flat base. It is mildly moist and easily melts in the mouth. Macarons can be found in a wide variety of flavors that range from the traditional (raspberry, chocolate) to the new (foie gras, matcha). The fillings can range from jams to ganache to butter. ( I am not sure I would eat a foie gras macaron)
Since the English word macaroon can also refer to the macaroon, many have adopted the French spelling of macaron to distinguish the two items in the English language. However, this has caused confusion over the correct spelling. Some recipes exclude the use of macaroon to refer to this French confection while others think that they are synonymous. ( remember 1 o not 2 for the French version)
In Paris, the Ladurée chain of pastry shops has been known for its macarons for about 150 years[update]. In France, McDonald's sells macarons in their McCafés (sometimes using advertising that likens the shape of a macaron to that of a hamburger). McCafé macarons are produced by Château Blanc, which, like Ladurée, is a subsidiary of Groupe Holder, though they do not use the same macaron recipe.
Outside of Europe, the French-style macaron can be found in Canada and the United States. ( and New York City!!) 

In no particular order, here is my Top 10 

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Chic Delights said...

Macarons are my favourite. NYC is lucky to have Laduree. Their Macarons are flown in directly from Paris.

miss b said...

I think I might just be addicted to macarons as I seek them out wherever I go! I'm a fan of Ladurée especially. I enjoyed reading your history of macarons and your little commentary. I shall have to make a note of these recommendations for the future!

Daryl said...

you havent had sugar and plumm's macarons ...

Sandy at You May Be Wandering said...

I cannot pass a macaron without eating one...Good thing they don't sell them everywhere! Great post!!


Mr Paul said...

I'd happily start at the bottom of your macaron list and work my way through :)

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