I’m always on the look-out for places to get macarons in Perth. In the past year, I’ve become obsessed with macarons. Their many vibrant colours and flavours, some utterly sublime, some downright weird, are so appealing to my senses and imagination. Eating a macaron is a textural delight – I relish biting into the crisp shell which cracks under my teeth to reveal airy meringue and a creamy centre.
My eldest sister CW recently tweeted: “La Galette in Subi markets now has macarons!” My younger sister Juji and her boyfriend Jay are a fans of La Galette de France’s buttery almond croissants – and Juji is as crazy about macarons as I am. Jac and I haven’t been to the Station Street Markets in Subiaco for ages. So, on Saturday morning, we all went to Station Street Markets to have breakfast and to buy macarons. We enjoyed a very nice Mexican/El Salvadorian/French breakfast together – I’ll write about that in a separate post. :D
Macarons are not macaroons
I was surprised to see that La Galette de France has labeled their macarons “macaroons”. Those of you who follow me on Twitter or are fans on Facebook are probably sick of me saying that macarons are not macaroons. It’s kind of disappointing that a French patisserie such as La Galette de France is helping to perpetuate the macaroon misnomer – their website also makes reference to macaroons – ARGH!
More on the macarons/macaroons issue:
- Macaron vs macaroon (including pictures showing how different they are!)
- Burning Question: Is Macaron Another Spelling of Macaroon? (In short: NO!)
- Masterchef Australia has repeatedly driven me to distraction over the macaron/macaroon issue. Macaron or Macaroon? MasterChef judges should know better, says chef Adriano Zumbo. I say they should know better too!
There, I’ve had my gripe. Back to the macarons.
We bought one of each of the 12 flavours (AU$2.80 per macaron), a technicolour rainbow in a cardboard box. It was fun guessing the flavours of the macarons.
Although I love the different colours of macarons, I really don’t find bright blue food or drinks very appetising. What flavour could this blue macaron be? I christened it the Blue Powerade macaron.
Back at Juji and Jay’s, we all sat out on the sunny deck with our precious box of macarons and tea – a mug of hot tea for me, and glasses of Malaysian-style iced “teh” made with condensed milk for the others. I picked up a knife, selected our first macaron and the tasting session began.
Macaron tasting notes
Note: the macarons were not labeled, so we relied on our taste buds to identify the flavours.
Beautiful, distinctly passionfruit. It smelled of passionfruit, tasted like passionfruit and there were even crunchy black passionfruit pips in it – not so many to be annoying, but enough to prove how authentically passionfruity the macaron was.
Pistachio with rose cream
This macaron was one of two ugly ducklings in the bunch, its lumpy shells resembling a cross between sludge and cat poo. Sandwiched between the green shells was a delicately flavoured pale pink rose cream.
Mint (not Blue Powerade!)
If the taste of a macaron reminds you of any room in your house, it should be the kitchen, not the bathroom! Unfortunately, this disconcertingly bright blue macaron tasted of vintage bathroom: like AIM minty gel toothpaste.
This macaron was a pleasant surprise to all of us. As soon as I cut it in half, Juji and I squealed with excitement at its liquid centre! Right in the centre of the macaron in the guava-flavoured butter cream was a blob of soft, oozy sweet guava puree.
None of us could work out what flavour this macaron was supposed to be. It tasted of meringue with no other discernible flavour.
Coconut with chocolate cream
This macaron was sprinkled with toasted coconut which combined beautifully with the chocolate butter cream. Juji said it reminded her of a Summer Roll chocolate bar.
I don’t like aniseed in any form, not black jelly beans, liquorice allsorts, Fisherman’s Friends lozenges… or bright green macarons!
The other ugly duckling and another sludgy looking macaron, this one resembled unfired clay. We correctly guessed the macaron shell was vanilla-flavoured, thanks to the tiny specks of black vanilla. But Juji and I gave another squeal of delight, much to Jay and Jac’s amusement! Another liquid centre! In the centre of this macaron, a fresh burst of flavour, thanks to gooey pear puree!
This macaron was larger than all the others, and in all the photos it made me think of “the biggest kid in the class”. The lemon flavoured shell with lime butter cream one made one very big citrusy macaron.
Raspberry with dark chocolate
Juji and I gave another whoop of excitement – inside the pink macaron shell, within the dark chocolate ganache was another liquid centre of sweet sticky raspberry jam. I declared this to be the jam doughnut macaron.
Chefs, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Another bathroom macaron. The lavender macaron tasted like… soapy nanna. Yes, “nanna” as in “grandmother”. Yes, eww. Jac found it so objectionable that she spat it out!
The very last macaron. Thank goodness for the reassuring rich chocolatey flavour. I needed something to help me get rid of the unpleasantly soapy lavender out of my mouth.
Awesome: passionfruit, coconut and the three with liquid centres: guava, vanilla pear, raspberry with dark chocolate
Fails: mystery pink, mint, lavender
Which macaron appeals the most to you?
If you’ve eaten macarons, what’s the most bizarre flavour you’ve tried? And what’s been your favourite/least favourite? I reckon if you can think of a flavour, you can imagine the macaron. Bacon and maple syrup macaron, anyone? :D
Before we started, Jac remarked: “There’s no way we’ll get through all the macarons.” How wrong she was! Below, macaron tasting: the AFTER shot. A dozen macarons shared between four people was perfect – very sweet but not enough to induce the dreaded sugar coma.
La Galette de France
Nedlands, Subiaco Station Street Markets, South Perth and Mount Claremont Farmers Market. See website for maps, directions and contact details.
See La Galette de France pastries featured in my Afternoon tea post earlier this year.
The macarons (AU$2.80 each) featured in this blog post were purchased at:
La Galette de France, Station Street Markets.
Telephone: (08) 9388 9286
Open Friday, Saturday, Sunday and public holidays 7am to 5.30pm
More macaron links
Read Juji’s post of our macaron tasting session: La Galette de France Macarons
If you love macarons and are on Twitter, you may like to follow my other Twitter account allmacaron for links, news and musings about the macaron.
Next year, Juji and I vow to be in Balmain, NSW to join the queue of macaron lovers at Adriano Zumbo’s Macaron Day. Check out other bloggers’ posts below – some amazing and intriguing flavours – fish and chip macaron, anyone?
- Macaron Day 2010 – The Heart of Food and the full list of Macaron Day 2010 flavours
- Macaron Day: 67 birthday presents – There’s no place like Oz
- Adriano Zumbo Macaron Day 2010 – Gourmantic
Coming up next: back to my posts about our recent trip to Canberra.