A macaron (/ˌmɑːkəˈroʊn/ mah-kə-rohn; French pronunciation: [makaʁɔ̃]) is a French sweet meringue-based confection made with egg white, icing sugar, granulated sugar, almond powder or ground almond, and food colouring. The macaron is commonly filled with ganache, buttercream or jam filling sandwiched between two biscuits (cookies). The name is derived from the Italian word macarone, maccarone or maccherone, the Italian meringue.
The intricate confection is characterised by smooth, squared top, ruffled circumference (referred to as the “foot” or “pied”), and a flat base. It is mildly moist and easily melts in the mouth. Macarons can be found in a wide variety of flavors that range from the traditional (raspberry, chocolate) to the new (foie gras, matcha).
The macaroon is often mistaken as the macaron; many have adopted the French spelling of macaron to distinguish the two items in the English language. However, this has caused confusion over the correct spelling. Some recipes exclude the use of macaroon to refer to this French confection while others think that they are synonymous. In reality, the word macaroon is simply the English translation of the French word macaron, so both pronunciations are technically correct depending on personal preference and context. In a Slate article on the topic, Stanford Professor of Food Cultures Dan Jurafsky indicates that ‘macaron’ (also, “macaron parisien”, or “le macaron Gerbet”) is the correct spelling for the confection.
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