Thursday, October 4, 2012

the world's greatest cookie... the Sarah Bernhardt

yes.  I said it.  the world's greatest cookie...
the world's greatest cookie
the world's greatest cookie, nicknamed the "Sarah Bernhardt", also commonly called a "biskvi" by Swedes
if you ever go to Sweden, or ever stumble across a Swedish bakery, there is only one thing you need to buy.  it's simply the world's greatest cookie.  if you can even call it a cookie.  it's called a Sarah Bernhardt.
Sarah Bernhardt cookies and other assorted pastries and treats
the first shop on the right when you enter the Ostermalms Saluhall (the Saluhall gets its own separate post) from the square serves sandwiches, cakes, and pastries of all kinds, including the unforgettable Sarah Bernhardt
the short story is that Sarah Bernhardt, a world famous French actress ("the most famous actress the world has ever known"), stumbled upon a a bakery in Amsterdam around the turn of the 19th century and tasted this immaculate confection and told the shop owner it was the best thing she'd ever eaten.  in her honor he named the cookie after her.
almond macaroon, chocolate mousse buttercream, and chocolate on top
the Sarah Bernhardt is a delicacy like none other.  a soft, chewy almond macaroon on the bottom, a dark chocolate mousse buttercream in the middle, with the top dipped in chocolate.
during World War II, the cookie, which resembled a radio dial was used as a code to connect members of the resistance.  after entering the shop, one would ask for a "Sarah Bernhardt" which served as a signal identifying the shop patron as a member of the resistance.  if I thought starting a revolution could somehow bring these delights to the United States, I'd do it in a heartbeat.  viva la Sarah Bernhardt!

macaroon, chocolate creme, and chocolate coating of a Sarah Bernhardt
this is a Sarah Bernhardt right before it disappears.  at this point one takes smaller sized bites to fully enjoy the delicate but palpable crunch of the chocolate shell and the smooth, soft, melt in your mouth creme inside.  once you get past about half way, it takes all the willpower in the world not to devour it in one bite.

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