This past weekend, I hosted a Christmas cookie exchange party. I took this opportunity as the perfect time to bake more macarons, of course. Peppermint is one of my favorite seasonal (and all the time!) flavors, so I decided to make mint macarons. Here's the recipe!
for the shells:
1.5 cups of confectioners' sugar
2/3 cup of ground almonds
(I use almond "meal" by the scoop from Whole Foods)
3 egg whites from large eggs
a pinch of salt
3 tablespoons of superfine sugar
(mine is in a carton that says "baker's sugar")
Wilton gel food coloring
1. Place parchment paper or silicone mats onto baking sheets.
2. Complete steps 1 & 2 for filling.
1. Place the almond flour and confectioner's sugar in the food processor and mix for at least 30 seconds.
2. Pour the egg whites in a mixing bowl, add salt, and mix with a handheld mixer
until they hold a stiff peak. Don't over do it! When you're getting close, just mix for 5 seconds and re-check. (Trust me that the handheld works better for macarons than your stand kitchen aid mixer)
3. Continue to mix at medium speed while adding the super-fine sugar a teaspoon at a time.
Make sure that it's getting blended before adding the next teaspoon. Keep mixing until the mixture is glossy and thick. Again, don't over mix!
4. Dip a toothpick into Wilton gel food coloring ("kelly green") and put into mixture. Gently fold with a spatula to distribute.
4. Dump in the ground sugar & almond mixture into the side of the bowl holding the whipped egg whites. Fold in, gently, using a large metal spoon.
5. Continue to mix until fully incorporated and somewhat smooth.
6. Fill your piping bag (with a large tip in place) with the mixture and pipe in circles onto parchment paper or silicone mats.
7. Lift baking sheets above 3 inches above the counter and drop evenly. This will burst any air bubbles. At this point, you'll want to add any toppings (cocoa powder, sprinkles, candy cane bits, for example) to the shells. Remember, you'll only need to do that for half of them.
8. Let rest for at least 30 minutes, up to an hour to dry.
9. Preheat the oven to 310° F
10. Place macarons, one sheet at a time, into the oven for about 8-10 minutes and let cool thoroughly before removing from baking sheet.
for the filling:
5-6 oz of dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup of water
3 tablespoons superfine sugar
1 oz. package of mint leaves
1. Place sugar, water, and mint leaves in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring, so that the sugar dissolves. Simmer for a few minutes.
2. Let sit for an hour, while baking shells.
3. Place chocolate in a small, metal bowl.
3. Bring syrup mixture to boil again. Strain on top of metal bowl/chocolate, pushing down with a spoon to get all the liquid out of the mint leaves.
4. Stir until melted and let sit to cool a bit.
1. Match shells together, size wise.
2. Spread or pipe a little bit of filling onto half of the shells & top with matching shells.
3. Let sit for an hour before serving. I like to keep mine in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Mmmm. Now, I'm craving a bowl of mint chocolate chip ice cream.