Thursday, August 25, 2011

Macaron Journey - Part 1 (featuring On Patisserie)

One of my little hobbies with my sister is going around the world and trying different macarons from different Patisseries or cafes. What are macarons?

A macaron is a sweet confectionery made with egg whites, icing sugar, granulated sugar, almond powder or ground almond, and food coloring. The macaron is commonly filled with buttercream or jam filling sandwiched between two cookies. Its name is derived from an Italian word "maccarone" or "maccherone". This word is itself derived from ammaccare, meaning crush or beat, used here in reference to the almond paste which is the principal ingredient. It is meringue-based: made from a mixture of egg whites, almond flour, and both granulated and confectionery sugar. (Shamelessly copied and pasted from Wikipedia.)

Ladurée's 12 piece set. Lots of vanilla (my favorite!) and some seasonal flavors. I'll blog about it later :)

My cousin was visiting from England for the past couple weeks, and we got together earlier this week before she left. We went out for tea and she treated me to macarons since she knew that I was obsessed with them. These macarons are from On Cafe. Imported from London! Haha...they weren't fresh obviously, but she kept them in the freezer while she was here...and by the time we sorted out where we wanted to get a drink, they had defrosted. (It's not the ideal way to enjoy a macaron...but refrigerating them does help a lot :) Especially if you have a 12 piece set you want to enjoy...!)

A small 5-piece set from On Cafe! I love the simplistic yet very attractive packaging. Must be the colour scheme that makes me happy... :)

I thought the way the 5th macaron was arranged was kind of odd. It was the buffer for the rest, so it got crushed and banged up a lot more than the others. I think if it was on some sort of tray to keep it in place it would have been better, although Ladurée, Jean Paul Hevin or Pierre Hermé are just boxes too. It's not a big deal. However, it happens, once in awhile a stray macaron does get crushed :(

Black sesame Glaced ginger & a smooth chocolate ganache. Poor thing got smushed!  It tasted severely of I was gagging for a bit...but then the sesame flavor came out.. which made it more bearable.(Let's recap a bit: I don't like chocolate, I don't like the taste of it and the texture. Yes, I'm odd and strange, but I do eat Green Tea Kit Kat bars from time to time...and the Sakura ones are bearable too.)

Cointreau Vanilla. So lovely!!! It tasted lovely too..although you don't taste too much of the cointreau...and overall the macaron is very creamy/buttery compared to Laduree. I really like the attention to detail they have for these macarons.

Mango. Tasted very delicious. The flavour is subtle and not overbearing, very nice. It is also very rich in texture and creamy/buttery. We were splitting all the macarons in half to share, I liked how you could see the layering of the buttercream.

So pretty right?! Chocolate Strawberry. It looked lovely, but the chocolate kind of killed me. My cousin started laughing at my facial expressions. More strawberry, less chocolate! (However, I think for the chocolate & strawberries lover out there, they would love this.) I really like the light glaze of silver they added on top of the biscuit on top. It may not add to the flavour but it does make the macaron seem so special.

Pink Peach & Champagne. This tasted like fluffy happiness. It was also very rich and creamy, but the taste was very lovely ♥ I think this was my favorite of all of the 5. It wasn't overly sweet, but it had just enough peach flavor and the buttercream just worked very well together. 

I think overall On Cafe has some great macarons. It seems that they are also a feast for the eyes, but it's not a cover up for lack of flavor. I think having a few of them at a time or sharing them with another person is a great way to enjoy them. It's a bit too rich and heavy. We couldn't place what exactly it was that made it a bit too much, but we suspect it's the buttercream.
I don't know when I'll be back in England again, but I'll think my sister and I will go there to get some more in the future :)

The Macaron Journey blog series will feature other macarons we've tried around the world. Please stay tuned for more and my comments about them! ♥

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Lareine, the bratty princess

I've kind of fallen off the earth lately...been busy with work and hanging out with family. I just came back from a two trip to Buffalo. It was amusing and fun, but I didn't really buy much. Nothing really caught my attention.
My sister brought over Makoto, so she's visiting for a bit. I'll have to start making some clothes for Lilith, so I can finally give her back to my friends. LOL She's been sitting on my guitar case for awhile...and I've just been delaying developing and making patterns and clothes for her...oops.

Then I'll have to start making some stuff for Makoto....which should be interesting. Those boobs o-o;; LOL

Time to upload a couple of Lareine's looks... :)
The lighting kind of washed her out a bit...but I love this look on her. She really looks like the bratty princess that she is meant to be. The outfit was bought off DoA and made to resemble Rosen Lied's clothing. I decided to not bother with the shorts she came with and made a skirt to match the outfit. 

I whipped up the skirt very quickly and I luckily had fabric and trim very similar to the top :) The skirt looks much better...and I like how it's so poofy.

Cool Brat look? lol
She was in this outfit for a bit...I thought it all worked well together. I really like the hat...I might have to get another one from the seller on's just so amusing :)
You get to see all my stuff that sits on my dresser in the background. Lots of Gundam Seed stuff...I had a huge obsession with that series...especially for Lacus and Kira ♥

Delilah's been hiding for a while so that mom can't see her and realize how many dolls I actually have....doesn't have that I have extra dolls visiting...even if I did bring her out I don't know where to sit her!
That concludes Lareine's photos for now. I'll probably have more spam later :)