Friday, December 21, 2012

U comme Un Macaron

 Here's a presie you can give yourself this holiday.
From me to you.
 Course you'll need to be in Paris ahem...
 If you are right now you can sashay into any patisserie no matter how couture or grandiose and ask for just ONE macaron.
 It's true.
Here's living proof.
I went to many patisseries to test this out.
 What knocks me out is all these patisseries have special mini sized bags to hold that ONE macaron. Is that not amazing or what? Could this happen in New York? Not on your life.
 Frowns and serious looking down the nose is all you will get. But sweet little ONE macaron bags plus pretty booklets listing flavors with pictures? Not happening. Ya gotta buy a box of them..
 Extra points go to witty top dog patissiere, Pierre Herme, who knows you may crush your ONE macaron in transit. Broken macarons beautifully shot on the cover of his flavor chart/ livret explicatif. Pretty terrific no?
 With your ONE macaron you get a little bag + a signature napkin + a booklet. What's not to love? The French adore their peche mignon/quilty pleasures. Why not make an afternoon snack as delightful as possible?
 Here's an ancient cousin of the macaron Parisian - the old fashioned meringue cookie - just sugar + egg whites.
No resistance to such a pretty pink bag from Fossier. Besides it had the word 'macaron' on it...
 So there it is PBers. No need to feel intimidated waltzing into any darn fancy-shmancy pastry shop in Paris. It's perfectly OK to buy just one macaron. That's my gift to you this holiday season.
Who knew?
Or perhaps you'd rather DYI and make as many macarons as you like? Jill Colonna has a 2nd edition out of her FAB Mad About Macarons. It includes a troubleshooting section, a glossary of UK-US terms, and another new section with US ingredient stockists. By the way it may not say it's the 2nd edition on Amazon but it is.
Jill says so.
Have a wonderful weekend and Holiday PBers!


  1. If ever I go..I will remember:)

    Love your aquarelle..

    Si jamais.. je visite demanderai..un dirai..:"Carol told me I could:) "!

  2. You know I do think that is a very ARTY shot of the broken macarons. Thanks for the tip on the 2nd addition macaron cookbook. Have you tried it yet?

  3. Wow. That photo of the hand holding the tongs reaching for the pistachio (?) macaroni...that takes genius. I see that picture and I wonder, "How does she DO it????"

    I'm a Capricorn and I notice details like that -- and I am in awe of the way you can show a scintillating mote of Paris life like that, day after day...

    When you make Paris your home you will be one of the brightest of lights in La Ville Lumiere.

    1. Only you could use a word like 'mote' correctly
      Paris has more motes than one can keep up..
      It's a constant battle chasing after those motes, the lill' devils!
      xoxo cg

  4. It's all very well to BUY just one mac...but to eat just ONE? Pas possible! I can prove it: I opened my thawed box of Trader Joe's peppermint chocolate holiday macs. I did not eat just one! I was lucky to have one left to paint!
    This box claims the macs were made in "northern France". The cookie parts were a vision: smooth, shiny crispy top with great feet! Gooey insides...but the color was a bit wan for a pink. And the chocolate ganache filling - way too parsimonious!
    Besides, the fleur-de-lis is upside down on the box!!

    1. Anonymous12:34 AM

      'The cookie parts '
      ? ? ?
      I'm surprised Blogger let you get away with that one!
      Fleur-de-lis upside down?
      This can NOT be French!

  5. Great watercolor to open the essay.
    I love this theme - a whole post on one mac!
    Great! I love the bag, the booklet & the great photos of single macs...wish I was in Paris :)

    1. Oh the ticket is IN the mail for you Nikon!!
      Attention to detail is the French's middle name ya to focus on that.

  6. Anonymous10:07 PM

    Not to burst your bubble but I've bought single cookies in their own little bags all over New York, as well as in other cities and countries, for years!

    1. NOT TRUE!!
      Why don't you sign yr REAL name and name a few places
      New York is tremendously snobby in a way Paris isn't believe it or not.
      Anyway it's the concept of peche mignon that's missing on this side of the drink and narry the twain Missy

    2. Jack Hurley2:00 PM

      Lighten up Carol, it's Christmas!! I don't think this person was trying to be rude and why would he/she make something like that up?

    3. Ha Jack Hurley!
      Anonymous got back to me and told me it was La Maison du Chocolat that graciously gave her the ONE cookie and they are French.
      Of course I take this too seriously.
      But without MACARONS what am I?
      Chopped liver.
      My Modus operendi.

  7. Is this why French women are so slim?

    I can't think that any restaurant in France would ever advertise an "Eat As Much As You Can" buffet, for example, somehow I imagine the French would be mystified by the very notion!

  8. youjioa rs12:09 AM

    I was wondering how you come up with these fantastic ideas!
    You keep us on our toes

  9. nancy in Savannah12:20 AM

    I must tell you that Savannah has a Macaron vendor,"Maison de Macarons" and the product is fabulous. You could certainly buy just one, the tres southern ladies baking and running the place would not dream of being snooty to someone who wanted only one, but I bought 6 yesterday, plus an extra Meyer Lemon just for me (was taking to friends as a petit cadeau for dinner). All house-made ingredients, including all the juices and flavorings and almond flour. And they have moved to within meters of my front door!
    Joyeux Noelle!


    1. Nancy, Savannah is another country...more Frenchie than New York...
      Wish I lived in Savannah..

  10. Lucinda12:47 AM

    Buying just one mac would be torture for me.
    How do you do it?

  11. What a great book!! Definitely on my last minute Christmas gift list for the weekend. I know a few macaron lovers that would definitely cherish it.

    Hope you're enjoying the holidays in New York!! Can't wait to meet up with you (finally!) in Paris. :)

    xx Milsters


  12. Ah - reminds me of le macaron run-around Paris for the Fête du Macaron in March that we did together, Carol. Great fun!! These wee individual packs are classy, as are the tongs! Thanks for mentioning the book - yes, the 2nd edition has a quotation on the front so slightly different. All revealed on the website at
    Enjoy your holidays too, Carol. Speed here - off to Aix for a change of scene. Calissons! Joyeux Noel Jill xo

    1. Jill I know you'll be sharing with us macarons a la calisson in not time :)

  13. One can also just buy one piece of candy from the chocolate shops, too. Paris is a lovely place, as you well know.

    1. Ah ha...I didn't think about that one Jeanne..
      The petite bouche/little bite is a French concept I guess
      not 'all you can eat' as Mouse mentioned.

  14. You don't have to be in Paris to eat les macarons . . . There's a small but delightfully well-stocked Dalloyau cart in Schiphol airport (Amsterdam), I saw it in passing as I was rushing to make my flight to Portugal. Since I have never been to Paris, I wouldn't have recognized the brand but for PB. Merry Christmas Carol! If ever in Porto, try pastel de nata :)

    1. I love pastel de nata...there's a place in Paris in the Marais
      yum yum
      Macaron carts are wonderful...

  15. Er..."Macaron" is masculine (le macaron),
    so should it not be "un macaron" rather than "une macaron"?

  16. Thank you Thank you Terry
    I realized my error on the subway this morning.
    NO WAY can I ever be French
    Serious lack of attention to detail :(
    Must go fix
    Or maybe it's 'cause I'm dyslexic??

  17. Ah..the merits of small portions!!!!

  18. I'd go and have one...and then return and have another one...and another...mmmmmmmmmmmmm.

  19. Just about everything in Paris is done with style. The amazing thing is not that you can buy just one of something, it is the reverence with which the purchase is conducted. A special bag, a little ribbon, a lot of care, for just one!

  20. A single, tiny pleasure packaged in style - fabulous.
    (You couldn't get this in London either)
    Wish you a very happy holiday weekend, Carol - hope it brings you many guilty pleasures xx

  21. Bon Noël!! God Jul!!

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  23. Bonjour PB~
    I'm a little behind reading emails.....I did buy my first ONE macaron at Stohrer's...the best chocolate macaron it was too!!!

  24. I don't know that I have such control as to only buy one macaron, but then I have to fight off my macaron loving 12 year old. The first time I went to Fauchon- so last millenium, I wasn't sure about white asparagus (I look back and shudder now at my naievete) so I ordered une piece for our picnic. The lovely vendeuse was confused "une piece, madame?", "oui" I said. I enjoyed my une piece of white asparagus.... Thankfully I know better now.


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