Mouthful of Sunshine

Satisfaction in every bite

One Part Italian, Six Parts French – Miel Patisserie

on April 16, 2012

ImageApril 15, 2012
Miel Patisserie, Philadelphia PA
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Tiramisu
Chocolate Macaron
Rose Macaron
Raspberry Macaron
Pistachio Macaron
Coconut Chocolate Macaron
Banana Chocolate Macaron

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Early Sunday mornings are just not good for heavy desserts with too much cream or dense chocolate ganache. Therefore, I decided to go with the Italian classic of Tiramisu. The one at Miel Patisserie is certainly not the most elaborate and divine tiramisu visually. It is simply a square with each layer visible. On top was a coating of dark cocoa powder and a dark chocolate coffee bean. The presentation was simple that it matched the occasion.

The taste was quite light for a cake with layers of cheese. The ladyfinger cake layers were so soft it melted in my mouth. The mascarpone cheese layers were creamy but not overwhelmingly dense or rich. The coffee taste created a delicate contrast to the cake. That nice coffee bean aroma never ceases to amuse me. Some of the coffee soaked into the cake, making the cake even moister and fusing the flavours in a more harmonious way. The many layers gave the cake a nice blended taste and texture with each bite.

Miel Patisserie also sold macarons, which is the reason I decided to go there instead of Swiss Haus Bakery. These macarons were small, bite-sized ones. They were not made fresh in the morning since I saw them being taken out of packaging inside a box. However, I am sure they were recently made as they still had the right texture of the tradition French macaroons.Image

The Chocolate Macaron had a nice, strong chocolate flavour. It was not too sweet but it was not completely dark chocolate either. The filling was certainly a semi-sweet chocolate ganache that went well with the colour of the shell. The macaron melted in my mouth and tasted absolutely delicious!

The Rose Macaron looked light and refreshing with the pale pink shell and the white buttercream filling. However, I found the buttercream to be too much. The rose flavour came through but it is such a light aroma that the buttercream seemed heavy. I perhaps would have preferred a white chocolate ganache filling instead of using buttercream as the base.

The Raspberry Macaroon was one of my favourites of the bunch. The filling had a very strong raspberry flavour, nice and sweet. To me, it tasted very much like a lovely raspberry preserve or jam. However, this particular macaron was stale. A soft and moist cake centre did not accompany the crispy shell. If fresh, though, this macaron would have tasted amazing.

The Pistachio Macaron was certainly nice and nutty. The green looked very much like the natural shade of pistachios. I really liked the chopped pistachios on the shell. It was nice to have that added crunch. The buttercream filling also tasted distinctly of the pistachio paste. Overall, the nutty aroma came through very strong and I loved how it definitely tasted like pistachios.

I have to admit I had doubts at first of the Coconut Chocolate Macaroon. However, I found it quite to my liking, which is unusual as I have never been a fan of shredded coconut. The blend of coconut and chocolate was perfectly balanced, though, so that the coconut was not overwhelming. The sweetness and slight bitterness of the semi-sweet chocolate ganache went really well with the coconut shreds on the shell, creating a lovely, unique taste. It is not that common to see a coconut-flavoured French macaroon. Usually, it is the dense American version, perhaps with a chocolate centre or dipped in chocolate, with a lot of shredded coconut so that the texture is almost all coconut. This was a nice twist and for me, with the perfect amount of coconut.

Finally, the Banana Chocolate Macaroon did not taste like bananas to me. The chocolate ganache filling had a strange tartness to it that I do not associate with bananas. It also had a slight artificial flavouring to it – certainly not a nice, natural banana aroma. The colour was lovely though. I’ve always had a liking for banana-yellow desserts.

Overall, these macarons were quite decent. The shell was crisp on the outside and soft, moist, and slightly sticky on the inside. For the buttercream fillings, I would have preferred a white chocolate ganache one instead just because for me, buttercream can easily turn a dessert from light to heavy with too much cream. I may be biased, though, as I never liked buttercream or whipped cream much since it is not sweet but quite oily, making me not want to eat too much of it at once. I think the macarons were definitely hit and miss with the flavours, but when they were good, I really enjoyed them.

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