A New Pairing to Savor: Liqueur and Marzipan |Post by Mithu|
Posted: Dec 10 2012
I'd like to introduce a new blogger to The Tasting Room. Mithu Lahiri. A frequent customer and lover of the finer European confections:
I love marzipan. When it’s paired with a delicious liqueur, I love it even more!
I grew up looking forward to boxes of fantastic sweets, usually Biermann Marzipan (and Bombay halwa from Jackson Heights in Queens) every time my father came home from a business trip to New York City. And…it’s no secret that I have a “thing” for desserts laced with liqueur; I have had a penchant for them since I was a child. For obvious reasons, I was not permitted to drink wine with my parents as a sevenyear old, though I was allowed little “consolation” sips from their glasses. Therefore, I would choose the Grand Marnier Soufflé or the Bananas Flambé for the perfect finalé whenever we went out for a nonIndian dinner. Alcohol adds another dimension and intensifies the flavors of many desserts. So, it was inevitable that a liqueur-infused marzipan bar and I should finally meet.
Niederegger’s Eierliqueur Marzipan bar is a delightful combination of bittersweet chocolate, eierliqueur and their world-famous marzipan.
What is eierliqueur? Eier, means egg in German and is pronounced, “EYE-e.” Eierliqueur, also known as Advocaat, is a traditional custard-flavored Dutch or Belgian liqueur, made from eggs, sugar and brandy. It is very smooth and rich, almost like eggnog. Who wouldn’t like that? Even the description is delectable! My first introduction to this lovely elixir was as a filling inside soft, bite-sized German biscuits. I was smitten from the first bite!
Much to my consternation, I found out that the more liquid version of eierliqueur is sold as an export and that I would have to go to Europe to try the much thicker version which is eaten with a spoon because of its consistency. I am looking forward to that glorious day…!
OK, no more tangents! Onward, to how Niederegger beautifully pairs its marzipan with this marvelous concoction . . .
When I saw this bar few weeks ago at the Gourmet Boutique, I jumped at the chance to buy one, because 1) I love eierliqueur, as if it weren’t all too obvious. 2) Gourmet Boutique stocks Niederegger’s liqueur-infused flavors during the holiday season, so they’re there only for a limited time.
The bar has three “layers” of flavors, the first one being the bittersweet chocolate exterior. The two inner flavors – the marzipan and the liqueur, hit you as soon as the chocolate starts melting in your mouth. There is something irresistible about biting into crisp bittersweet chocolate which then melts to reveal fine, authentic marzipan layered with a creamy, custard flavored liqueur. The liqueur has a delicate flavor, but isn’t so subtle that you have to really concentrate on detecting its flavor. Rather, it is creamy, slightly alcoholic and causes a pleasant warming sensation - typical of any top-flight liqueur, leaving you completely satisfied after just one or two pieces.
That last statement might leave some chocoholics skeptical, since chocolate is an addictive substance. However, this triple-layered bar is truly to be savored for the complexity that eierliqueur adds to marzipan; it brings the appreciation of this beloved confection to a new level. This is not a treat to trivialize as a means to a sugar rush.
I may be completely biased about this bar as I have devoured a bar in the recent past (with my sister’s unnecessary help) and have, while writing this post, sampled two pieces for research purposes. So, all of you foodies will just have to try it and see if you like it as much as I do.