I’m a bit late to the Trader Joe’s game, mostly because my city is a bit late to the Trader Joe’s game. We just got our first. We’ve been by once before, but the aisles were so packed with people, I couldn’t even attempt to browse the freezers.
For those unfamiliar, Trader Joe’s is the big brother chain to Aldi. Very similar setup, but with far more panache. Trader Joe’s has its own line of products, all with delightful packaging. Goods are displayed in open coolers and shelves to maximize space. Our Trader Joe’s feels pretty small (much like our Aldi–I expected something much bigger) but packed with little delights. From Speculoos spread to craft beers to organic produce, it’s a pretty nice little market.
I’m not as obsessed with macarons as everyone else seems to be, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get the hype. They’re delightful, they’re adorable, they’re delicious. So when I found out sometime last year that Trader Joe’s had a frozen macaron, I was pretty sad that I had no access to a Trader Joe’s. Well now I do.
Trader Joe’s maracons come in a package of 12 for $4.99, which sounds pricey for anyone who’s seen a macaron, but never seen one priced out in an actual bakery. They only offer a box of 6 vanilla and 6 chocolate; I really wish they had some other flavor options.
The macarons have a very solid, smooth, shiny crust and beautiful feet. The package I picked up held twelve perfect specimens–no smashed ones or torn bits. They come in a tray that separates them and offers structural support to keep them safe.
The chocolate macarons have a delightful brownie flavor. Unfortunately, the cookie was more like a bread than a meringue; it was full of air pockets and very chewy. It left my mouth pretty dry. The ganache was creamy and lovely, though.
The vanilla flavor is much more pleasant than, but still very reminiscent of, tasting pure vanilla extract. They meringue is much better, very creamy and smooth. The interior was almost homogeneous once you got past the nice crust.
All together? A nice snack. If you’re looking for Laduree quality, uh… LOL. But if you’re like me, hundreds of miles from any bakery that might even contain a macaron, you’ll be glad you stopped by Trader Joe’s.