Heavens, a princess! Could it be anything else but pink, graceful and covered in sparkles? Ah… Surely what every little girl dreams of? A world of glitters, bedazzlement and starry-eyed giddiness. The Princess by the Thévenin pastry shop adorns itself with its most beautiful nymph thigh colored gown, and we adorn ourselves with our most beautiful knife. Let’s see what this Princess is made of.
This dessert is composed of a madeleine cake base topped with a strawberry compote, wrapped inside a dome of lemon mousse. All of this is coated in pink icing, inlaid all around its perimeter with macarons shells, and topped with a marshmallow knot.
The Princess by Thévenin has a diameter of 85 mm and a height of 50 mm. The specimen we purchased weights 100 grams and costs 4.50€.
As soon as we slice this Princess in half, we are met with the smell of strawberries emanating from its center. But before tasting her, we start by biting into the little knotted marshmallow which she wears like a hat. Pure white and very sweet, the marshmallow is chewy and slightly sticky to the touch. Purists will say that an artisanal marshmallow should be less elastic, but this remains a detail in this overall composition. We then tackle the trim of her dress, stealing a few macaron shells, whose surface is entirely bejeweled in sugar crystals. Not surprisingly, the macarons turn out to be too sweet, but also too crunchy – they are dry and devoid of a chewy center.
As we explore the icing – whose pink shade is reminiscent of a nymph’s thigh – we discover that it is also very sweet; it also has a bitter and jarring after taste. Thankfully, the lemon mousse found underneath is well made – its texture is airy, its flavor recognizable, and is not too sweet. It holds the dome’s shape perfectly without being too dense.
At the center of the mousse, we find a strawberry compote whose flavor is wonderfully true to the fruit, creating a pleasant surprise. Even its texture is noteworthy, appearing to still contain the tiny seeds found on the surface of strawberries (editor’s note: to be completely accurate, what we call “seeds” are, in botanical terms, achenes – the real fruit of the strawberry plant. The red strawberry is only the floral receptacle, which develops into a fleshy base on which these achenes anchor themselves. Each strawberry is therefore a fake fruit – or rather a pedestal on which the strawberry plant’s real fruits attach themselves!)
Finally, the madeleine cake found at the base of the composition is well made, in terms of both its flavor and its fairly recognizable texture. It is nice and moist, and its thickness imparts enough chewing consistency to the dessert to counterbalance the mousse and compote found in the dome.
It is at the heart of the Princess by Thévenin that we find the star of the show: it is this strawberry compote, fruity and true to the flavor and texture of the original fruit, which spellbinds us. Yet several elements prevent the composition from obtaining a high mark, particularly the excessive sweetness of several elements – including the icing and the macarons – as well as the icing’s taste, whose slight after-taste does not marry well with the general mildness of this dessert. Nevertheless the equilibrium in textures is generally maintained, and we believe that endowing this Princess with less sugar, moister macarons and a more delicate icing will allow her to shine through in her true glory.
5 rue Notre Dame des Champs, 75006 Paris
Open from Monday to Saturday from 7am to 8pm
Tel: 01 45 48 16 92
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