What is the dessert that people most think about when we are talking about France? Of course, it cannot be a simple dessert or one that can be easily copied, that just wouldn't be right for a country that prides itself on presenting some of the world’s best gastronomy. A sweet that catches your attention the minute you see it and has a taste like no other when you finally get the chance to bite into it is the world-famous Macaron! So let's jump on a Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation high-speed train and travel in style to find out what makes the Macaron so special.
What is special about Macarons?
Of all types and colours, Paris offers a wide variety and ways to taste them
We do not think we have ever seen a dessert, sweet, biscuit, chocolate, etc., with such strong and sometimes psychedelic colours. Macarons immediately get your attention and then you are intrigued. You have to buy some, you are wondering what they taste like. Is it a strong taste, is the flavour related to the colour? When the moment to bite into the Macaron finally arrives, you get a sweet surprise, not only because of the taste but also the texture!
So, what actually is a Macaron?
Some would describe them as cupcakes, others would say they look more like a teacake, others say they are biscuits. It is hard to say but everyone agrees that they are definitely original. The ingredients are simple – almond flour, icing sugar and egg white – but the outcome is a superbly delicious mouthful. The French are so proud of their emblematic sweet temptation but the huge secret that most people don't know is that the Macaron actually originates from Italy!
Back when they were first created in the 12th century, they comprised of one piece with no filling. In the 19th century, a miller changed their aspect by giving them 2 layers and putting a sweet creamy filling between them. This sticky delicious delight soon became a popular treat everywhere and France made it their own.
Through the years, making different colours and different flavours have made them even more desirable and now there are shops and cafes dedicated solely to Macarons. In some parts of France they even have museums that present the Macaron as an art, as even though the ingredients are quite basic, the actual making of this delicacy is not easy!
Where to try the best macarons in Paris
Macarons are the ideal souvenir for acquaintances or to enjoy themselves
As Paris is such a popular destination and one of the most visited cities in the world, it is not a surprise that one of the best places to try an amazing array of flavours and colours is in the centre of the city. You can find there a pastry shop that was opened in 1862, when the Macaron really started becoming popular.
One of the best places in Paris to enjoy macarons is Ladurée pastry shop, which has stores all over the city. They were the inventors of the macaron as we know it today, so why not pop in and try exotic flavours like pistachio, coconut or delicious red berries? You will not be disappointed as this shop has a reputation for excellence.
Another place for exotic flavours is Pierre Hermé, an eminence in the world of sweets. The selection includes macarons with such suggestive names as Ispahan (rose, lychee and raspberry), Yasamine (mango, jasmine and grapefruit) or Montebello (pistachio and raspberry). Can you imagine these flavours melting in your mouth? Simply heavenly!
La Maison du Chocolat, located at 225 rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré, a few minutes from the Arc de Triomphe, is very well known and popular for its variety of truffles, pralines and chocolate bars. It also has a huge assortment of traditional macarons and other more recent inventions that will make your taste buds tingle!