I happen to cook next to a young woman, Jamie, in my superior cuisine class at Le Cordon Bleu who never ceases to amaze me with her big heart, powerhouse energy, and incredible eye for design. She made me this pastry Big Mac the other day to cheer me up (and it wasn't easy to make). For those unfamiliar with the French pastry delicacy 'macaroon' they are cookies lighter than air, slightly crunchy on the outside and just a little sticky towards the middle. They are the most ethereal cookies, dissolving in the mouth instantaneously before one can even swallow.
When I first came to Paris I thought macaroons were those shredded coconut clumps that are dipped in chocolate with a cherry on the top. They're not. Macaroons come in all different flavors: caramel, lemon, raspberry, chocolate, vanilla, etc and are normally filled with a flavored butter-cream. Although the ingredients are simple they are difficult to make and the outcome is rarely predictable.
The one posted here is of course overly stuffed with filling to give the hamburger effect. Next time you're in Paris stop by LaDuree for tea and macaroons. For those San Franciscans out there, Miette at the Ferry Building has a beautiful little patisserie that makes them too and they just melt in your mouth. (they also offer apprenticeships so check their website out if you're interested)
Here's what we look like when we go to school. This is a good picture too. If my old students knew I was wearing a hat like this I'd never hear the end of it. Good thing I'm across the pond where no one can find me. Thanks Jamie for your sense of humor! We look like dorks in these hats but our food tastes good. Gros Bisous!