Food - Drink
The Difference Between Macarons And Macaroons
BY MEGGAN ROBINSON
French macarons and coconut macaroons are two different desserts that are often mistaken for one another, and even more confusingly, many people misspell or mispronounce "macaron" as "macaroon," even though they know they're talking about French macarons. These are the real differences between these "cookie siblings."
A macaron is an elegant sandwich cookie made with two disks of almond-based cookies sandwiched with jam, buttercream, or ganache. Macarons are airy and melt-in-your-mouth delicate, and while their popularity has exploded in the U.S., they're a pain to make, so lots of bakeries make a good buck off of these posh treats.
Meanwhile, a macaroon is a simple drop cookie made of shredded coconut, sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, and sometimes chocolate. Macaroons are historically served for Passover, since they don't contain wheat flour, and in an interesting twist, today's coconut macaroons actually descend from the original French macarons.
Macarons landed in the U.S. in 1894, but were transformed by flour miller Franklin Baker, who received a mountain of coconuts from Cuba that he didn't want to waste. Baker sold the coconut dried and shredded, and they made their way into macarons in place of almond flour, eventually turning the French cookie into something completely different.