25 Apr 2008

One of the strongest impressions I've brought back from our trips to France and Italy was the fact that so many of the food stores concentrate on a small range of goods. I found that bemusing, becos we are so much more used to the supermarket approach of a dizzying array of identical product, differentiated only by its packaging.

In small villages and large cities in France and Italy, we were fascinated by tiny shops who focused on a small range of foodstuffs - no need to confuse and perplex with a 20 different types of the same thing.

I came home with a newfound respect for that degree of specialisation, and a desire that when we finally enter the retail market properly, that we will stay small and niche focused, rather than trying to be all things to all people.

And one of the things I fell most in love with were macarons - the meringue biscuit sandwiched with a butter cream.

I spent almost a year some time ago, working on how to perfect nougat - and was rescued by a good customer who'd undergone a similar process of trial and error, and incredibly generously gave me the results of her learning process..

I've been engaged in a similar process with macarons, becos I haven't as yet managed to crack the perfect result. Imagine then my delight when I discovered a link on the Paris Breakfast blog that I get ( mainly to be titivated by the images of Paris, a city I need to go back too!), to a dessert magazine, and a detailed description of the definitive method of making macarons.( Go to page 36).

I'm off to the kitchen!

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