Thursday, August 20, 2009

French Macaroons - Paris In a Cup Review

I first fell in love (at first sight) with macaroons while flipping through wedding magazines. I always thought they were the cutest little desserts with a myriad of tantalizing flavors in fun colors. I was finally able to taste these little beauties several months ago during my trip to New York at Bouley restaurant. Ah, it was love at first taste. Heehee. I am somehow just enamored by the crispy outer shell, chewy semi sweet almondy inside scented with the flavor of that macaroon, and the sweet layer of "stuff" that is smothered between the two layers (like chocolate ganache, vanilla buttercreams, white chocolates, jams...). Recently, I stumbled upon the Delicious Life Blog (great site by the way) and saw...ah beloved macaroons. Developing an ever growing intensity of craving another taste of a macaroon, I started searching for recipes online...

Well, the recipes seemed like a huge undertaking. Many of the recipes are written in "grams" (i don't have a scale) and you would not believe the variations...everything from keeping the egg whites out to using it fresh, to letting the mixture rest, mixing the right amount of strokes, turning up the temperature of the oven up and down, icing or no icing sugar, granulated versus castor sugar...OI!!!! The overwhelming sentiment on the internet was that these things take lots of time and effort with many failed attempts.... Feeling a little defeated but drooling over the idea of eating one, I finally had a DUH revelation...Find a store that sells it! I was thinking that I would have to schlepp to LA...but I don't because there is....Paris in a Cup in Old Towne Orange! The few reviews of some fellow macaroon lovers of the cafe were positive. So, I decided to wander there after work one day since it is so close! The place is absolutely adorable! The front of the store has the glass case selling the macaroons as well as chocolates and desserts, plus a variety of cute gift boutique-y french items.

Paris In a Cup sold two types of macaroons...The "bigger" macaroons, which were probably about half a credit card in diameter, were supposedly more chewy according to the store clerk and the "lighter" macaroons which were even smaller but with more flavors. The lighter ones I believe were from some outside company. Anyways, I decided to try the bigger ones love chewy sweets. They were $2.00..A bit pricey for the size. (The other lighter type was 8 dollars for 7 tiny macaroons). The four flavors of the bigger macaroons were passionfruit, chocolate, vanilla, and raspberry. It was packaged in a cute little chinese take out box and placed in a pink bag...Yipee!!! So, I rushed home, snapped a few pictures..

Eagerly awaiting to try these babies.....
With my steaming cup of coffee by my side, I grab the orange macaroon. First bite, passionfruit explosion! Crispy outside as it should be. Chewy inside with every bite shouting passionfruit. Very nice. Love it! Coffee sip, clean palate. Mmm...Next, chocolate...Rich flavor. Perfectly crispy outside again. Chewy...Almost reminding me of a cross between a chocolate cookie/brownie/chocolate truffle, but not as sweet and definitely lighter in texture. Good, but weirdly not satisfying...Why??? I rack my brain because it tastes good. Ahh! I know! Its because I am not craving chocolate.. (I know right? who doesn't crave chocolate all the time??). Okay, few more coffee sips...Next, vanilla. Ahh, perfection!! (I would have to say that this was one of my favorites, along with the passionfruit). I love practically all things vanilla bean....Absolutely delightful, especially with the vanilla white chocolate tasting center? Me want more!! Oh well...And finally, the raspberry macaroon. Such a pretty shade of pink buuut not my favorite for flavor because the jam in the middle tasted faintly floral to me. I am not a fan of flowery flavored things in my food...

Well, it is one of my missions in the next few weeks to try and make some of these lovely little creations. I will hope for the best and will share with you the journey when I do try...I can't wait to make some so i could eat more since buying them are way too expensive to make it a habit!!!

Location: Paris in a Cup
Address: 119 S Glassell St. Orange, CA

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