Tanya Emerick, Owner, Scarlet Nantes Macaron, Seattle, Washington
Macarons are having a lasting moment. The delicate treat has infinite color and flavor variations and the added bonus of being gluten-free. Mastering their meringue-like mixture of egg whites, powdered sugar and almond flour is tricky, though, so fortunately pastry chefs like Seattle-based Tanya Emerick and her Scarlet Nantes creations are up to the challenge.
Owner Tanya Emerick became fascinated with the finicky French pastry during trips to Paris where her husband received his culinary degree and worked with Michelin-starred chef Guy Savoy.
“I spent most of my Paris afternoons enjoying treats at Maison Ladurée and Maison du Chocolat and it became a goal of mine to master the art of French macaron,” said Tanya, who paints canvas-worthy flowers and designs on the surface of some macarons to denote a season or a celebration.
Tanya says The Perfect Purée is ideal for giving macarons flawless natural flavor, customizable fillings and vibrant color. She uses The Perfect Purée to enhance what she calls the “heart” of her macarons. Deep purple Black Currant Purée, also known as cassis, is a European pastry staple and a favorite flavor of hers.
“I like to make the Cassis (Black Currant) Buttercream first as the color from The Perfect Purée Black Currant Puree is what makes the wonderfully vibrant color of the buttercream. Then I match the shell with the color of the Cassis Buttercream,” she says in describing her process. “These finicky treats require a great deal of attention and it is such a pleasure to see their sweet, lacy feet rise then fill their centers with flavorful and unexpected fillings. I believe creativity, kindness and high-quality ingredients makes all the difference in pastry.”
Tanya also uses The Perfect Purée Passion Fruit Concentrate for a passion fruit curd filling and The Perfect Purée Meyer Lemon Concentrate and Lemon Zest for vibrant citrus flavors in the lemon tarts, cakes, macarons and meringues that customers especially love in winter. Her wish list of flavors includes The Perfect Purée Lychee Puree, Ginger Puree and Carmelized Pineapple Concentrate.
Tanya hopes one day to have a kitchen with a storefront but for now works out of a commercial catering kitchen in Seattle making desserts for small events, weddings, birthday parties and other celebrations. She remembers the relief she felt the day she discovered The Perfect Purée.
She was producing all the macarons for a local restaurant when a special order came in for mango macarons for a wedding the next day. The event planner was eager to comply despite the obviously challenging logistics.
“Unable to find enough mangos, I contacted a local vendor (Merlino Foods) who suggested The Perfect Purée and — voila — a great relationship was born.”