Friday, November 8, 2013

Pumpkin Macarons - Trader Joe's - Marlton, NJ

Pumpkin Macarons - Trader Joe's - Marlton, NJ
I love Trader Joe's, but the location closest to me is surrounded by tons of traffic, the highway is always under construction, and their parking lot is an absolute nightmare. It is quite a journey, but I braved it all to get my hands on some unique pumpkin goodies.
I originally made the trek to Trader Joe's trying to find their version of a Pumpkin Pie Pop-Tart, but they were sold out. (Boo!) Instead, I picked up a few other items that I never knew exsisted:
  • Frozen Pumpkin Macarons
  • Frozen Pumpkin Croissants
  • Pumpkin Spice Granola
  • Pumpkin Soup
Just a quick little Macaron vs. Macaroon tip:
  • Macaroons are those chewy, coconut-y, sweets that are shaped like cookies. Macarons are little delicate cookies made with almond meal and meringue. Macarons are typically made into sandwich-style cookies with a rich ganache, while Macaroons are often coated in chocolate.

As far as packaging, Trader Joe's usually puts a decent amount of effort into their designs to create something with an earthy, but hipster-y, feel. When compared to their products I have had in the past, this design falls a little flat. Everything is orange! There is absolutely no contrast in the design, which makes it look a little cheap. (Although these were a bit on the cheap side for macarons. It was $4.99 for a dozen.) The photograph is orange toned, the background is orange, and the text is either a creamy off-colored white or burnt sienna. It's just too much orange! This looks like a product I could have picked up at Aldi. (No offense Aldi, you know I love you.).

Since these are frozen, you need to let your macarons thaw at least 30 minutes before eating. So I pulled the ray out of the box and followed the thawing instructions.
Once thawed, these have a sweet almond scent which reminds me of the almond macaroons I buy down the Jersey Shore. The scent is sweet, mild, and nutty. I can't detect any pumpkin or pumpkin spice from the scent alone, but the freezing process usually destroys a lot of scent. (All the frozen food items I have reviewed barely have a scent at all.)

I took a bite and I was amazed that the macaron was still so crispy after being frozen and thawed. The outside is crispy and crumbly, similar to a meringue, and the inside is really rich and creamy. These textures work amazingly well together.

The crisp cookie itself tastes like sweet almonds, but the thick and creamy filling contains a delicious amount of pumpkin flavoring. It's as if pumpkin pie filling was reduced into a thick ganache and stuffed inside. I absolutely love these! Unlike a real pumpkin pie, which is thick and heavy, these are light and airy. I could easily eat a half dozen of these! (Plus they are such a convenient size! Two bites and they are gone!)
These are amazing! If you can, go out and grab a box of these right now. You won't regret it.

On a Pumpkin Scale of 1-5 (5 being the most pumpkin-y) I’d give this a 5. These are absolutely amazing! (And gluten free for those of you with food allergies.)

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