Pastries and Macarons from Pierre Herme
Okay, I'm still catching up on our holiday adventures!
Instead of busying ourselves with tours of galleries and museums and visiting the Top 10 sites listed in guide books, this time we defiantly struck out in search of new foods to try instead. We visited La Maison du Chocolat, Laduree and Pierre Herme and tasted their intricately-decorated pastries for the first time.
Of the pastries, my personal favourite was probably the Plaisir Sucre for two reasons. One, the sensational chocolatiness minus any cloying sweetness. Two, the construction, as well as the differing textures, of the layers which consisted of a hazelnut dacquoise base topped with a milk chocolate spread, dark chocolate ganache and thin dark chocolate sheet twice over, whipped chocolate cream and finally another thin dark chocolate sheet. Maybe one day I will feel brave enough to try making it at home, as Keiko has done. The Surprise Yu dessert, stewed and raw apples with yuzu with yuzu cream enclosed in meringue and wrapped in orange cellophane, is also pictured here (back) but this really was not to my liking. The other pastry worth mentioning is the Isphahan (not pictured but you can see what it looks like here) from Laduree, fresh raspberries and lychee and rose-flavoured cream sandwiched between pink meringues - unusual and summery flavours.
Of course, we also had to try the much-heard of macarons. We picked a number of flavours from both Pierre Herme and Jean Paul Hevin, but our favourite by far was caramel à la fleur de sel (A: "I would go back to Paris just for these!"). Fortunately, A had the forethought to ask for two of these! The most unusual and strongest flavour was truffe blanche et noisette. Although the earthiness of the truffle flavour was certainly unusual and unexpected in a macaron, it did not prevent us from enjoying it.