Macarons are light-as-a-feather French confections that can be assembled pulling from a mix-and-match palette of sweet fillings and bases. Our recipe for this sophisticated French treat offers variations for vanilla bean, chocolate, peanut, coconut, raspberry and pistachio macarons.
The recipe is also a good base for any number of flavors. If using a nonstick pan, which heats up faster than a traditional one, go by the shorter baking time in step 4. Click here for 21-century variations on the classic.
A favorite flower of the Victorians, the sweet pea was thought to represent delicate pleasures. Exquisite buttercream renditions of the flower grace this layer cake. A beaded icing "frame" gives them the look of treasured pressed blooms.
Good for beginners, the piped buttercream daisy decoration on this cake requires only two pastry tips and no complicated curves. Scoring the cake first gives it graphic appeal and makes it easy to space the flowers evenly.