National Macaroon Day
(CNN) — Are you nuts about coconut? You’re in luck – May 31 is National Macaroon Day!
This delightful little confection has a storied past, and where you are could determine what it looks like.
The original macaroon is Italian and resembles the amaretti cookies we know today. The fluffy cookies are traditionally made from an almond paste, sugar and egg whites. Depending on who you ask, they’re either named after the Italian word for paste, maccarone, or the word ammaccare, which means “to crush.”
Italian Jews started adding coconut to these puffy pastries, and sometimes even dipped them in chocolate. Because there’s no flour or leavening agent in the cookies, these coconut cuties are perfect for Passover as they’re completely kosher.
According to online specialty foods magazine The Nibble, the French-style macaroon, spelled macaron, was invented by Pierre Desfontaines Ladurée. He apparently had the brilliant idea of making a meringue cookie sandwich, held together with ganache. Now, macarons come in all flavor combinations, something baker Dana Loia knows all about.
“My favorite flavor is s’mores. We use brown sugar to make the meringue and add a toasted homemade marshmallow fluff. Our most exotic flavor would have to be Fruity Pebbles – cereal is so underrated!”
After she opens her New York-based shop, Dana’s Bakery, on June 1, customers can order her delightfully colorful confections in-store and online.
As a caution to first time macaron bakers, she adds, “Macarons are very moody which make them difficult to make, but not impossible to master! Humidity is a macaron’s worse enemy, so I would recommend a sunny, dry day for one’s first attempt at making them.”
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