one of my favourite stalls in salcedo market is la cuisine francaise, which sells a very nice assortment of homemade french specialties like patés, quiches, apple tartine, pissaladiere, some lovely stews, ratatouille, and some kicking lasagne (not french, but darned good). i generally skip the majority of their baked goods because there are so many other bakeries around, but this time i picked up these absolutely ginormous macarons, one of the almond, and a chocolate one. i used to have a steady date with the macarons at bizu, but lately they haven't been up to par--always a little stale, a little sad, and the taste of some of the flavours seems to have changed. i had my doubts about the market macarons--at a little more than six inches in diameter, they are about 5 times the size of an average macaron, and maybe ten times the weight. whatwhatwhat?! robyn had a photo of maison du chocolat's version of a large macaron, which she called "the monster that eats babies" one; if that's the case, then these are the universe in which the monsters roam.
the flavour of both were excellent--not too sweet, real almond flavour coming through the almond one with a marzipan overtone, the chocolate one was a little malty, with not-overpowering ganache within. the outside had a much thicker crust than your average macaron, and the innard of the cookie was soft, almost bready. i've made macarons before, but i can't imagine that the batter i used for the small ones would turn out like these in larger scale. it seems like perhaps there is more flour or something stabilizing the meringue. if you look at the photo below, maybe you can see what i mean...?
does that look like an average macaron to you? it almost seems like a cross between a macaron and the savoiardi/ladyfingers i made for the strawberry charlotte. lighter, slightly spongy, but with that nice meringue crust and a bit of chew. if anyone has any pointers/suggestions on how to make the monster macarons, please let me know!