Faux Macaron topped with Homemade Apricot Preserve with Fennel Pollen & Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

Faux Macaron?  Say WHATTTT???  Okay, I have to admit, there is work to be done now on making them look like Jacques Pepin’s Macarons!  That being said, HOLY CATS…..an easy French Macaron recipe, and takes an 1/8 of the time of the normal French Macaron recipe….BONUS!!!

I am sure I have shared my love for French Macarons…..aaaannnnndddd I have also shared my sadness at my mishaps while trying to perfect a French Macaron.  My friend who was born and raised in France said he would get his Aunt’s Macaron recipe, and we would make them together.  To perfect a Macaron would be like winning the Nobel Peace Prize, or even an Oscar.  It is that important to me!  Now many of you out there are like “Terra, Terra, look at my recipe, look at my success, it is easy.”  Let me tell you, I see, and I believe, but I just need to let it be, and be patient, it will happen, I know it!

Now in Jacques Pepin’s book Fast Food My Way, he made his Faux Macarons, and added some apricot jam in the center.  So that got me thinking.  I pulled out my new favorite book The Flavor Bible, thank you to The Hungry Goddess for that recommendation.  AND with the help of two books, several ingredients on my kitchen counter, and my wicked mind, inspiration struck hard!

Faux Macaron topped with Homemade Apricot Perserve with Fennel Pollen & Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

Inspiration needed to arrive fast, because I had fennel pollen to share with you all.  I wanted to share a fun recipe that would make this gorgeous spice shine.  I received the little gold tin last week from Pollen Ranch, and my inner wheels were turning, let me tell you.  If you have not enjoyed Fennel Pollen yet, I recommend you try it out ASAP!  Fennel Pollen is very different from fennel seeds, or fennel bulbs.  The flavor is sweet and aromatic, with a hint of anise, coriander, and dill.  With the sweet but bold flavor, remember that a little will go a long way with fennel pollen.

I am excited to be a part of the Fennel Friday Cooking Club, thank you to The Hungry Goddess!   We will be sharing many different recipes with you to help kick start your inspiration!  Each month you will see a new unique recipe here on CafeTerraBlog, I may sneak in a few more though just for fun!

Faux Macaron topped with Apricot Perserve with Fennel Pollen and Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

Are you sitting there wondering why I made Faux Macarons, and apricot preserves to go with the fennel pollen?  Well if you take a look at The Flavor Bible, apparently fennel pollen pairs beautifully with apricots and lemon.  THEN the apricot preserve with the fennel pollen and lemon, topped on the almond cookie……OH….MY……GOODNESS!!!  The flavor will rock your world!  Even hubby was surprised…..AND he does not surprise easily! 🙂

Faux Macarons topped with Homemade Apricot Preserve with Fennel Pollen & Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

This Faux Macaron looks nothing like a French Macaron, BUT the texture when you bite down, the taste as it permeates your senses, and delicate nature all take you back to France at a cafe sipping on an espresso!

I wasn’t for sure what to expect with this recipe, but assumed it would be awesome…..it is Jacques Pepin after all!  I patted down the top of the cookie I believe just a bit more then I should have.  In Jacques’s picture of his final cookie, he has a poofy, light, airy cookie.  So now that I understand this recipe more, I will work on presentation for sure!

Yields 12

Homemade Apricot Perserve with Fennel Pollen & Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

Plus Jacques Pepin's Faux Macaron recipe included here!

25 minPrep Time

14 minCook Time

39 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe


Homemade Apricot Preserves -
6 fresh apricots, diced
1 Tbsp lemon verbena, diced finely
1/2 tsp Fennel Pollen
1/3 cup sugar
1-2 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp corn starch
Jacques Pepin's Macaron Recipe -
1 (8 oz) can or tube almond paste
3/4 cup sugar
1 extra large or jumbo egg white


In sauce pan, over medium low heat, add diced apricots, sugar, and lemon zest.

In small bowl, add corn starch and 1 tsp water, and mix together, then add mixture to cooking apricots.

Let the apricot mixture cook down, and thicken up. At about 10 minutes before you pull the pan off the stove top, add the lemon verbena and fennel pollen. Take off the heat, and let cool. You can make the preserve in advance.

Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Line large sheet pan with reusable nonstick cooking mat or parchment paper.

In a food processor or stand mixer, mix together the almond paste and sugar for about 12 seconds, or until incorporated well. Don't over mix.

Add in the egg white to the almond and sugar mixture, and mix for about 8 seconds, or until the mixture is smooth and creamy. (The mixture did not get smooth and creamy, was more sticky, and thick, that is okay.)

On cookie sheet, add 2 tsp of mixture for each individual cookie. With a moistened finger, press lightly on each cookie, and smooth the top.

Bake your cookies for 12-14 minutes depending on oven. They should have a light brown bottom, and very light tan top to the cookie. To see if the cookie is cooked enough, it will have a cracked surface.

Once cooked, let it cool for 15 minutes, then remove from the sheet pan.

Top one cookie with about 1 tablespoon of apricot preserve, and top with second cookie.....Enjoy!!!


Now I said the batter was sticky and thick in my recipe, and that is exactly what it was. I didn't want to mess with the recipe though, and I am glad I didn't, the cookie tasted wonderful. Don't pat down the top of the cookie before cooking the cookies too much, just lightly pat them down. I think I may have gone a bit crazy, and that is why I don't have puffy cookies.


Faux Macaron topped with Homemade Apricot Preserve with Fennel Pollen and Lemon Verbena #FennelFriday

Now that I have your attention with all this fennel pollen talk.  Stop by the Fennel Friday site and check out all the other recipes created with the gorgeous aromatic spice!

Have you had fennel pollen before?

How do you cook/bake with lemon verbena?


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  • Your preserve is such a gorgeous color, I love this flavor combination!
  • Hungry Goddess
    Drooooling and I love your spin and creativity! Thank you SO much for being part of the Fennel Friday Cooking Club - you are awesome!
  • Fennel Friday
    We are in love with these cuties! This is such a fun recipe - thank you so much for being part of the Fennel Friday Cooking Club! Looking forward to future creations.
  • Yummy...great use of the fennel pollen! I leave the macaron making to the experts...and stick with what I'm good at: eating them! Have a great weekend...
  • Liz
    I have apricot envy! Wow! And these easy macs are right up my alley...what a marvelous combination of flavors! I think I need that Flavor Bible :)
  • Angie Tan
    Gosh...the preserve looks amazing! The colour is just killing me.
  • Choc Chip Uru
    That preserve is so beautiful, I love the flavours of it :D Fennel pollen? Such a classy ingredient! Cheers CCU http://gobakeyourself.wordpress.com/
  • Terra, Terra, Terra, gosh what a brilliant color. Now I am kicking myself not picking up the apricots at Costco the other day. & fennel pollen I was always curious about! Have a wonderful weekend my friend!
  • kitchenriffs
    The Flavor Bible is a terrific book. Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg really know their stuff. I get ideas from it all the time. Nice recipe and fun post - thanks!
  • Betty Ann @Mango_Queen
    I've never had fennel pollen before, I admit ~ though your post has educated me a lot, and inspired me to go try some. And your faux macaron with homemade apricot preserves made me just drool and die! Must try this soon. Thanks for sharing & the kind blog comments, Terra dear! Hugs! Have missed you, my friend :-)
  • Como Water
    I have not had fennel pollen before, but I'm intrigued! And YES! I have used lemon verbena.... as nana would say, "it's just looooooooooveeeeeely!" :D
  • Mari’s Cakes
    I have not yet tasted fennel pollen, now I am curious and want to see how it tastes. Your preserves look delicious... truly inviting. http://mariscakesenglish.blogspot.com/
  • junglefrog
    I had never even heard of fennel pollen but now that I have I am very curious to how that will taste! Your macarons and that filling look pretty good to me
  • Jennie @themessybakerblog
    I want to bite into one of these so bad!
  • Kate | Food Babbles
    I've never heard of faux macarons before and I'm so intrigued! Not only am I intrigued by that but also the flavors here. I've never had fennel pollen before. These are simply gorgeous and your photographs are breathtaking. Definitely have to make these. SOON!
  • The Café Sucré Farine
    I think your cookies look just fine, no need to improve. Love the way you stacked them too!
  • Fennel and apricot? Sounds heavenly! Love these faux macarons!