Of Coffee and Macarons.

A coffee and some macarons help me relax better with my book. | Photo by Anna Verdina (Karnova).
A coffee and some macarons help me relax better with my book. | Photo by Anna Verdina (Karnova).

When I think of relaxing with a cup of coffee and my book, I always ask myself, “Where should I go to have my daily cuppa and maybe something to nibble on while reading my book?” That question never fails to escape my thoughts before planning my day.

Sadly, not many cafe joints here can give me what I need as most of them are frequented by young Malaysians and their big groups of friends. Don’t get me wrong, people here are free to go wherever they want to and with whomever they wish to be with. All I’m saying is that when you see large crowds at one place means the place is either a popular destination or it’s a rather small area and can only hold so many people at one time. So it’s back to the drawing board again and revisit your cafe blueprints and find another solution.

So far, I’ve not been wrong to choose Espressolab @ Nu Sentral, KL Sentral in Brickfields as The Chosen One. If anyone asks me where should they go to relax, I’d probably tell them that. Because I’ve been there twice already and the cafe has not failed to let me have my ‘personal timeout’ in peace. No doubt the location of the cafe is at the exterior of a shopping mall built in the centre of a busy and chaotic version of ‘Little India’, where public transport, pedestrians and other vehicles pass constantly pass through. Yet, the place still feels cosy and peaceful. Both times that I’ve been there, I ordered a cafe latte and a pair of macarons.

Macarons. Did you know that people tend to confuse the word ‘macaron‘ and ‘macaroon‘? Before I knew there was a difference, I thought they were both the same and that in different countries, they were pronounced differently. Well, I learnt my lesson. They are both different things, pronounced differently and in some ways, the process of making them is different too! When I knew what either one meant, it was really hard to hold myself back from correcting others who think they’re both the same. Let me tell you why they’re not the same:

  • Macaron: A specific meringue-based cookie made with almond flour, egg whites, and granulated and powdered sugar, before being filled with buttercream, ganache or fruit curd. This delicate treat has a crunchy exterior and a weightless interior with a soft ending that is almost nougat-like in its chewiness. I suppose people do get confused with it because of it often being known as a “French macaroon”. Now there’s your suspect!
  • Macaroon: A generic term given to a number of small and sweet confections, mostly equated with the moist and dense coconut macaroon which is made of egg whites, sugar and dried coconut, piped with a star-shaped tip, and sometimes dipped in chocolate. This little delight is also known as congolais, as it is known in France, and is frequently served during Passover because it does not contain any flour.

Do you see the difference now? A macaron has flour in it, while a macaroon has no flour in it. No? Here, let me show you a picture of the two and then you will know why they are both completely different types of sweet desserts and should not be confused:

ABOVE are MACARONS. BELOW are MACAROONS. | Photo by Popsugar.
Above: MACARONS. Below: MACAROONS. They’re different. | Photo by Popsugar.

You can read more about these sweet, yet contrasting little delightful things here on the Food Network Blog, including a brief history of how they came into presence. So the next time you visit your friendly neighbourhood cafe, and they serve these things, be sure to rein in your sarcasm and tell them the truth as gently as possible. Not everyone likes to be told they’re wrong. Unless the ones telling you that you’re wrong are your parents and you’re on the receiving end. Well, c’est la vie.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. RedHeadedBookLover says:

    This is such an amazing post! I really love your blog so much and in turn cannot stop reading all of your posts. I look forward to reading more from you!


    1. Sheu Quen says:

      Thank you 🙂 I hope you’ve been entertained so far 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. stayyoungbro says:

    Thanks for your brief clarification! I’m baffled because of this two different spellings too! I tend to think that both of them are the same and now this myth has debunked!


    1. Sheu Quen says:

      Hey, no problem 🙂 Glad it helped you understand them better. I used to think they were the same too. But with the photos, and the explanations, it makes so much sense now.


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