Ah... France. I dream of visiting, of walking its streets, OF EATING ITS FOOD!!!!!
I can't just yet, but something from France came to me in the form of Laduree, a 146 year old Parisian institution that started as a bakery, and is now a tea salon/purveyor of luxury food.
A good friend thoughtfully brought over her baby pink Laduree box, and inside 6 macaroons were gently cradled, waiting patiently for a delicate hand to bring it over to not-so-delicate lips smacking with anticipation. I'm not a big macaroon fan myself, but I timidly tried one, and ended up enthusiastically eating 3.
We each had the pistachio, coffee and the revelation of the afternoon: the salted butter caramel. Similar to dulce de leche but less cloying, it was a sensation to the taste buds, a creamy, toffee-like silken creation with salty undertones. I, the not-a-macaroon-fan, could probably eat 3 in one sitting. Good thing there was only 1. After enjoying the macaroons, and while in the throes of utter pleasure, a part of our brain prodded us with the reminder that we had overeaten, that we consumed more sugar and calories in 10 minutes than we should have, so in an act of desperation we drank some hot tea and immediately felt better. I mean, what could be healthier, right? And tea does go so well with macaroons.