By Nancy Saunders
Du Soleil aims to add a little sunshine to our lives in the form of colourful and delicious macarons. Owner Samantha Stamler creates the confections in her home. “They’re a magical combination of texture and flavour,” she says. “Macarons are eggshell-like crisp on the outside, with a cloudlike cream on the inside.”
Stamler fell in love with French pastry culture while spending time in Montreal. She tried her first macaron in Santa Barbara, California after reading about them on food blogs, and was fascinated by their science and process—particularly the difficult to achieve “pied,” or rise of the biscuit and resulting frills along the cookie’s edge. Stamler remembers trying one in Toronto a year after that first delicious introduction in California, and being completely disappointed. She vowed that she would learn to make high quality macarons that “aren’t too sugary or syrupy sweet.” Stamler was further motivated to create macarons because her husband has celiac disease and they don’t contain gluten. Macarons are made of almond flour, egg white, and sugar, with a buttercream or ganache filling.
A former student in the fine arts program at Lakehead, Stamler says making macarons lets her channel her artistic side through food. She derives a sensory pleasure from developing and distilling dulche de leche, raspberry coulis, and other natural, high quality flavours. Their preparation includes a 24-hour curing process to allow flavours to evolve. Stamler says her local chef friends are glad she’s making them, as they won’t—they’re too much work. Du Soleil uses top quality ingredients, many of which are fairtrade and organic.
Du Soleil started selling macarons in January, and their popularity quickly spread. Macarons are sold by the dozen for $30. They are popular for birthdays, showers, weddings, and many are purchased by foodies who have tried them elsewhere. Stamler offers classic flavours along with some seasonal choices, saying “there’s a flavour for every mood and season.” Orders can be placed through Du Soleil on Facebook or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, and are picked up from Stamler’s home. Du Soleil has perfected the dainty macaron, and looks forward to providing you with a little taste of sunshine.