I recently read a great piece of advice when it came to New Year’s Resolutions – don’t find motivation, find inspiration. I spent the holidays in Australia, a proverbial mecca for the coeliac not used to restaurants having gluten-free menus or coeliac society endorsed foods. So I returned dragging rather a large amount of books with me – books to learn from, to bake from and to find inspiration from.
Added to the gluten-free pile were two books by Eric Lanlard – Couture Cupcakes (what a fabulous title) and Totally Chocolate – the idea being to combine some rather opulent ideas with gluten-free recipes and get the best of both worlds.
And my goal for the year – master the art of the macaron. Secrets of Macarons by French chef José Maréchal is quite, shall we say, thorough, taking one step by step through the art of making this “dainty indulgence” covering the classics through to some rather exciting options such as salted butter caramel, macarons de nancy and amaretti. And do not be confused by the macaron versus the macaroon. In many instances people seem to use the words interchangeably, but as popsugar.com so helpfully explains: “a macaron specifically refers to a meringue-based biscuit (cookie) made with almond flour, egg whites, and granulated and powdered sugar, then filled with buttercream, ganache or fruit curd. In contrast, the word macaroon is a generic phrase…mostly, the term is equated with the moist and dense coconut macaroon, which is composed of egg whites, sugar, and dried coconut, often piped with a star-shaped tip, and sometimes dipped in chocolate”. Good to know.
So as we ease into 2015 I shall start to make my way through this fabulous mountain of gluten-free recipes. Stay tuned :).