Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Experiencing a Marrons Glacés

Shopping for stocking stuffers at Dean and DeLuca, there was a big stack of handsome of 12" by 6" little wooden boxes stamped in large letters "Marrons Glacés" with smaller letters below "Tradition France, depuis 1896", at least for this producer since they were mentioned in some literature prior to that.

Having never experienced this festive French delicacy, it was a why not, stick it under the tree and we can all try it. At the time of purchase I knew that it was some kind of candied chestnut but I somehow assumed that, for the price, there must be some sort of chocolate associated with it. There was not. It is a chestnut cooked in slightly vanilla spiced sugar syrup in copper pots, slowly stirred for a long time, until the syrup completely permeates the chestnut.

I was the first and, so far, only one to try one. My wife has apparently tried one in the past and remained silent. To justify the price, getting to the delicacies was a chore, with multiple levels of packaging, a Russian wooden doll came to mind. Finally there I peeled back the thick foil wrapper and found what looked like a little brain. Taking a bite, it somehow had a moderately firm but characterless texture. It was sweet but not disgustingly so, it was earthy tasting but not overwhelming so, it was incredibly heavy from the outset. Potato chips have nothing to fear.

Within just a few minutes I felt the potential for gout to set in. My wife has a non-related auntie in not so good health who adores Marron Glacés, and she will soon be getting a nicely wrapped package for Chinese New Year. I hope that she survives.


Post a Comment

<< Home