Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Ispahans on a budget

It's Independence Day here in Malaysia, otherwise known as Hari Merdeka. Did I feel patriotic today? Not exactly. Today, the first in a long time, I didn't even manage to catch the Merdeka Day parade on television, but that's another story.

Instead, I took a journey to the beautiful city of Isfahan, via some macarons of course.

Fly me away to Isfahan...

Ever since I discovered Pierre Herme and macarons, I've always wondered what the buzz was about his Ispahans. The name itself was suitably exotic and inspiring. Rose-flavoured macaron shells, with lychee buttercream and a raspberry gelee centre. The heady perfume and flavours of the east in a macaron.

All the amateur photography prep made me hungry

I assume here that Pierre got his inspiration for the Ispahan from the grand old city of Isfahan. So, I did a little research on the city itself. I found this source a good and easy read sprinkled with some beautiful photos. I'm  inspired to visit Isfahan some day. In the meantime, I'll just have to settle for a taste... or two. 

There is a recipe for Pierre Herme's Ispahan macarons here. This is the closest recipe I could find on the Internet for what they are reputed to be. I never had a chance to try them while in Paris earlier this year, so I can't vouch for its authenticity. Plus, I'm a home-cook and the recipe looks like it's meant to be made in a professional kitchen and feed an army of macaron-lovers. Scale it down? Can't be bothered. 

So, what did I do? I made rose-flavoured shells in a baby pink. Mixed some lychee-flavoured buttercream and used my favourite raspberry jam in the centre.

How did they turn out? Mmmmmmm... pretty good for Ispahans on a budget!

Lychee buttercream on rose macaron shells

Raspberry surprise






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