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Gourmet French Macarons
French Macaroons
"Gourmet French Macarons" is by Utahn Mindy Cone. - photo by Cedar Fort

"GOURMET FRENCH MACARONS: Over 75 Unique Flavors and Festive Shapes," by Mindy Cone, Front Table Books, $24.99, 272 pages

Utahn Mindy Cone has put together a cookbook in "Gourmet French Macarons" to share great treats with French techniques that can scare even the bravest cooks.

Cone, who is a party stylist and blogger, eases the process with tips and step-by-step instructions. There are more than 75 easy-to-follow recipes, and there is ample space for handwritten notes around the recipes in the cookbook. The tastes of the macarons are exciting. The tips in the book, for making, assembling, decorating, piping and tools to use are easy to read and follow.

Cone first shares a basic macaron shell recipe, and most of the remaining recipes are some variation on the basic recipes. She also suggests some flavor combinations. The variation for a chocolate shell with the piping of maple brown sugar and bacon is unique. It has a savory and sweet taste.

"Gourmet French Macarons" also includes a variety of macarons that use templates or other designs for holidays or other events. Some of the shapes are flags, bunnies, ice cream cones, hearts, sun and clouds, along with other animals, food and plants. These require several additional steps amd are a bit more complicated than the typical macaron, but the fun trying to make them was worth it in the end. The designer macarons in the book can help elevate a party or event to new heights.

This is a cookbook that will help stretch the home chef's cooking and baking skills.