Speaking of minimalism. Get a load of this:
fig. a: summer line
If you're not sure what you're looking at, they're macarons. Real Parisian macarons.
I'm not sure what we ever did to deserve her, but C., god bless her soul, came back from Paris and within 24 hours she was sitting at our breakfast table sharing some of Pierre Hermé's summer line* of macarons with us. We could hardly believe it. She even brought them in these cute little specially designed macaron travel-packs.
fig. b: l-r: Céleste and Ispahan. Beautiful, non?
I don't know how many people eat Pierre Hermé macarons for brunch with a cup of coffee, but I highly recommend it.
I should clarify, though. We had them as an après-brunch dessert.
And, no, we're not in the habit of having dessert with breakfast or brunch, but we know when to make exceptions. I mean, just look at them.
And then there's the way they taste... What's the word? Well...
Ispahan: rose-infused crème au letchi (a.k.a. lychee cream) and raspberry gelée de fruits--Hermé's signature creation gone miniature--no rose petal on top, but...
Macaron Mandarine & Baies Roses (a.k.a. Nameless Mandarin Wonder): this poor thing doesn't have one of those fancy trademarked names for some bizarre reason, but its combination of mandarin orange and pink peppercorn was nearly as exotic as the Ispahan
Céleste: passionfruit crème de mousseline, rhubarb and strawberry gelée de fruits--relatively straightforward but perfectly balanced
Satine: cream cheese crème de mousseline, orange and passionfruit gelée de fruits--that cream cheese crème de mousseline made this one the most surprenant of the lot--beautiful white satin finish
Carrément Chocolat: as the name suggests: chocolate to the max--ultra-dark chocolate ganache, candied cocoa nibs, and ultra-dark chocolate gelée--it's become known around here as Plus-que-parfait Chocolat
And then, in the blink of an eye, they were gone.
fig. c: après the après-brunch dessert
Makes me want to go to Paris and hang out in Place St-Sulpice. Or better yet: the Jardin du Luxembourg. Hmm...
* That's right. In Paris pâtisseries apparently have spring, summer, fall, and winter lines. I guess there's some degree of seasonality to the baked goods at our local pâtisseries (pumpkin pie around Canadian Thanksgiving, et al.), but seasonal lines?