These two often get confused. There is a coconut Macaroon (\ˌma-kə-ˈrün\) and then the French pastry Macaron (\ˌma-ka-ˈroh\).
The French Macaron is delicate and airy and has an almond, sugar and egg whites-based shell. The shells have a light, crunchy texture on the outside and are slightly chewy on the inside. These shells are held together by a filling, typically made from a ganache butter-cream, meringue or jam.
According to Dominique Michelle, (Historian of food and kitchen), the earliest records for the base of the macaron cookie recipe dates back to the Renaissance. She finds its origins in Arabic countries, such as Syria (which still is today one of the top 10 exporters of almonds), because of the “Age of Exploration and Discovery”, which is the time when Europeans explored the world.
For more information please visit Mr. Macaron.