Hello, beautiful…aren’t these macarons so festive looking? I’ll make this post quick, since all you need to know for this recipe is in my Macaron 101 post.
St. Patricks Day celebrates the day of the death of the patron saint of Ireland in 461 A.D. It also commemorates the arrival of Christianity to Ireland, as well as the heritage of Irish Culture. So how did it evolve into the partying reputation it now has? Well typically on this day the churches would lift the Lenten ban on food and drinking alcohol. This essentially encouraged the society to go a little overboard. These days it’s celebrated all over the world, in more countries than any other national festival.
So these macarons are a twist on the classic macaron from my recipe post. With a little bit of sprinkles and some peppermint extract, these will soak up a little of the alcohol from all the…ahem… celebrating. ☘️ Have a fun and safe St. Patricks Day, everyone!
St. Patrick’s Day Macarons
Makes Approx 30 macarons, depending on size
200g Confectioners Sugar, sifted
100g Almond Flour, finely milled
120 g. (approx 4 large egg whites), at room temperature
¼ tsp cream of tartar
¼ tsp kosher salt
¼ C. Superfine Sugar (or granulated sugar pulverized in food processor)
½ tsp peppermint extract (very powerful, don’t use more!)
2-4 drops of green gel food color, optional (I like Americolor of CK brands)
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1 ¾ C. Confectioners sugar, to taste
½ tsp peppermint extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp kosher salt
1-2 tbsp heavy cream/milk
Mixer, either handheld or stand mixer
4 half-sheet pans, two stacked on each other
Silicone baking mats, or parchment paper
Sieve or sifter for powdered sugar and almond flour
Piping Bag with a round tip
Trace equal sized circles with sharpie or pencil on the back of two pieces of parchment paper, then flip them right side up and place onto two half-sheet pans, both fitted with another pan underneath them. Snip 3-4mm off the end of a piping bag, or insert a round tip and set aside.
In a large, wide bowl place your pre-measured almond flour, and sift in your powdered sugar on top of that. Gently whisk to combine well, set aside.
In mixer with whisk attachment (or hand mixer) beat the egg whites and salt on medium speed until foamy, about 1-2 minutes. Then add in the cream of tartar, mixing again on medium for an additional 20 seconds. With the mixer on medium/high speed slowly add in the superfine sugar, vanilla and peppermint extract and green soft gel food color, if using, and continue mixing for an additional 3–4 minutes until egg whites form a thick and shiny meringue that has stiff peaks (but be careful not to overwhip the meringue!)
Transfer egg whites into bowl with flour/almond mixture and with a spatula, macaronage by folding in the egg whites, careful to not deflate the mixture too much.
Keep folding and turning the batter, occasionally until it falls down from the spatula in a thin even ribbon when lifted up. Avoid overmixing and undermixing! You should be able to hold up the spatula and be able to form a figure 8 shape with the batter, falling down in a thick ribbon but after 20 seconds the batter should sink into itself and become smooth on top. If the ribbons of batter fall on top and then don’t sink in, keep folding a few more times until they do. Then put batter in a piping bag fitted with a large round tip.
Pipe equal-sized circles onto the baking sheets, holding the piping bag up at a 45 degree angle, keeping the tip in the center of your circle and gently squeezing and gently pulling up. Then firmly tap the baking sheet on the counter several times to release any air bubbles. Sprinkle the tops of the macarons with the sprinkles quickly, you want them to stick to the macaron batter before the skin starts to form on the top.
Place tray on the oven rack moved to the lower third of the oven, typically the slot above the bottom one. Preheat the oven to 300°. Then let the cookies sit out at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour until a “skin” forms on top and they are dry to the gentle touch. If you gently touch the tops and you get batter on your finger or it sticks at all, wait another 15 minutes and try again! Meanwhile, make your filling using the directions below.
Bake for 8 minutes, then rotate the pan and bake for another 8 minutes. They should rise slightly and the sides of the cookies should puff up, giving them their tell-tale feet. To test if they’re done, gently grab one of the macarons by the top part above the feet, and gently move it side-to-side a bit. If it slides around, give the macarons 2 additional minutes to cook, and test again. When they no longer slide, they are ready to come out of the oven to cool!
Allow to cool completely before trying to remove from baking tray, I find they stick too easily if they’re still warm. Then sandwich two cookies between the mint buttercream filling and although they’re ready to be enjoyed then, traditionally they’re even better when refrigerated overnight to allow the filling and macaron shell to meld together.
Mint Buttercream Filling:
In a stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter for 2-3 minutes on medium speed until butter is fluffy
Then slowly add the confectioners sugar, vanilla extract, peppermint extract , 1 tbsp of the heavy cream and salt while mixer is on lowest speed until thoroughly mixed, then beat on medium speed for another 3 minutes.
Add in a tbsp of the heavy cream if it appears dry or stiff, and mix again for 1-2 minutes until the desired consistency is reached.
Place into a piping bag with a round tip or the tip of the bag cut at the end, and pipe the filling in between two of the macarons after they’ve baked and cooled.