Baileys & Coffee Macarons

March 7, 2016

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Wow! This year’s St. Patrick’s Day recipes have been quite surprising for me. I’ve actually gone outside my culinary comfort zone with a couple of these and it has been a success. I told you how I’d approached that Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Soufflé with much trepidation. And lo and behold all was fine. Well, I was the same way about Macarons. Although I love them, I felt that I would just have to resign myself to purchase them in bakeries. I was convinced that if I were to try them at home, what with their reputation for being so notoriously finicky and sensitive, I was already doomed to fail. But look what I’ve got here for you today…Baileys & Coffee Macarons.

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And I swear to you, I did actually bake these. There was no cheating and buying them in a bakery and then taking pictures of them (not that I would even consider doing such a thing…) I made these all by my lonesome!

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Well, all by my lonesome along with some great tips and advice from Olivia at Liv for Cake. (You simply must take a look at her scrumptious blog!) Now, I won’t fib to you and say that making Macarons is easy-peasy. But it wasn’t a nightmare either. They key is you must follow directions to a T. There is no room for any slap/dash cooks here. An accurate kitchen scale is a must as well. There can be no short cuts, no skipping steps. If you can do this, you will be rewarded big time!

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These little gems are crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside and filled with irresistible Baileys & Coffee flavors. Soooo worth the effort. These Baileys & Coffee Macarons are to die for I tell you! They will be a big hit at your St. Patrick’s Day fête and folks will think you’re quite the chef!

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Baileys & Coffee Macarons

  • Servings: 20 -25 macarons
  • Difficulty: moderate - you must follow instructions closely
  • Print

recipe from: Liv for Cake

Ingredients:

For the cookies:

  • 120 grams egg whites (the whites from 4 large eggs), room temperature
  • 130 grams (4.6 oz) caster sugar
  • 140 grams (4.9 oz.) almond powder (also called almond flour)
  • 110 grams (3.9 oz.) icing sugar
  • 2 teaspoons espresso powder

For the ganache:

  • 200 grams milk chocolate
  • 100 grams heavy cream
  • 20 grams Baileys

Directions:

Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Make a template for the macarons by tracing the outline of a 1 1/2″ cookie cutter. Once you have all of your circles drawn, flip the parchment paper over so that the ink/pencil does not transfer to the cookie. (Be sure to take a look at my helpful links below. There is a link for a silicone baking mat specially made for macarons, with the templates already printed on the mat!)

Place the almond powder, icing sugar, and espresso powder in a food processor. Process until just beginning to clump.

Sift and discard any bits that won’t pass through the sifter. Set aside.

Make sure the bowl of your stand mixer as well as the whisk attachment are clean and free of any oil or grease. If any is present you will not be successful when you attempt to make the meringue peak. Also take care that no tiny bit of yolk has made its way into the whites. Its presence will also doom a meringue.

Whip the egg whites until they’re the consistency of a loose foam. Continue whipping while slowly adding sugar. Whip to a stiff meringue.

Fold the dry mixture into the meringue. In order to achieve the proper consistency, you will need to fold the batter many times. Once the batter is ready it will be smooth and shiny and will run in a steady stream off a spatula to settle back into the batter.

Pour the batter into a piping bag fitted with the 1A tip.

Pipe the batter onto the templated baking sheet.

Once all of the macarons are piped, whack the baking sheet on the counter at least 3 times to get rid of any air bubbles.

Let the macarons dry at room temperature until dry to the touch. Approx 1 hour. DO NOT skip this step.

While macarons are drying, make the ganache.

Chop the chocolate finely and place in a bowl. Heat the cream until boiling and pour over chopped chocolate. Do not stir! Cover bowl with plastic wrap for 2 mins. Stir to combine and add Baileys. Place in fridge to set.

Once dry, bake macarons in a 300°F oven until they stick a little bit to the parchment, about 12 minutes.

Let cookies cool completely before gently removing from pans.

Pipe ganache into the center of one cookie, sandwich with another of the cookies and twist together. Let Macarons chill and age in the refrigerator overnight. They will taste even more amazing when the filling and the shells bond and blend together.

Enjoy!

Baileys & Coffee Macarons brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Helpful Links to Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Baileys & Coffee Macarons:

Oxo Good Grips Stainless Steel Food Scale

Cuisinart Food Processor

Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer

Simple Baker Silicone Baking Mat for Macarons – I know I told you how to trace out a template for your Macarons on parchment paper, but here you have a silicone mat where it is done for you! I have already ordered one for myself!

Ateco 11 piece Plain Round Cookie Cutter Set

Oxo 3-in-1 Egg Separator

King Arthur Flour Almond Flour

Domino White Superfine Sugar (caster sugar)

 


Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Soufflés

March 5, 2016

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Wow! Look what I’ve got here for you today…Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Soufflés! Sounds quite posh huh? I must admit, that is certainly the vibe I got when I heard someone talk about a soufflé. I thought soufflés were a bit too fancy for me and I was, in all honesty, much too nervous to attempt to make one. I mean I had spent my whole childhood watching cartoons which often showed some poor soul slaving over a soufflé all day just to have it collapse after some surprising loud noise occurred. Nah…not for me. Those soufflé things just sounded too persnickety and with my quick temper, there was always the chance I would do some serious damage to the source of the aforementioned loud noise which would quite possibly land me in the jail house. And then there was the fact that I had only ever thought of sweet soufflés, I never even considered that there could be a savory soufflé.

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Well I am very pleased to say that all those Saturday morning cartoons mislead me a bit on the soufflé front, as well as many others I’m sure. I can probably need not worry about coyotes toting huge Acme anvils or sticks of TNT either. 🙂

Ha! Remember these guys?

Ha! Remember these guys?

These Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Soufflés were not difficult to make at all. And they taste ahhh-mazing! So light, so fluffy. And completely adorable in their little individual serving dishes. Kind of fancy, yet they also have a bit of a rustic vibe. The husband went mad for them and wondered where they had been all his life. So if you are looking for a unique potato dish for those St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, why not try these soufflés? Take it from me, no need to be scared….soufflés can be your new BFF!

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Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Soufflés

  • Servings: 2 - 5 inch shuffles & 4 Le Creuset mini Cocottes
  • Difficulty: easy
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recipe slightly adapted from: One Sweet Mess

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 lbs. potatoes, peeled and cubed.
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, plus more for brushing
  • 1 heaping cup grated Kerry Gold Reserve Cheddar cheese
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped thyme, leaves only
  • 3 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
  • scant 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375° F. Generously brush the inside of 2 (5-inch) soufflé dishes, as well as 4 Le Creuset cocottes with butter.

Cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks. Add the potatoes to a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring the potatoes to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue to cook until the potatoes are fork tender, about 10 minutes.

Drain the potatoes very well. Either place the potatoes in a food mill or run them though a potato ricer. The moral of the story is that you want these mashed potatoes to be very finely processed. You can even do this with a good old potato masher. But if you do, make sure you really mash them well!

Stir in the butter, grated cheese, half and half, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the egg yolks.

Add the egg whites to a large bowl. Whisk until the whites become foamy. Add a pinch of cream of tartar to the bowl. Continue to whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.

Add a heaping scoop of egg whites to the potato mixture; gently fold to combine. Fold in the remaining egg whites until no streaks of white remain.

Fill each of the prepared soufflé dishes 3/4 of the way full with the potato mixture. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the soufflé is puffed and a rich golden brown color.

Enjoy!

Irish Cheddar & Thyme Potato Souflees brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Links to Useful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients Irish Cheddar & Thyme Souflees:

Le Creuset Set of 4 Mini Cocottes

Potato Ricer

Herb Stripper

 

 


Whiskey & Orange Oat Cream Toddy

March 3, 2016

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Yes indeed! Contrary to what old Punxsutawney Phil would lead us to believe, it is still Winter. And I’ve noticed quite a few folks out there are sniffling and wheezing with winter colds. I know just what’s called for….a Whiskey & Orange Oat Cream Toddy! Chock full of vitamin C to build up your immune defenses and Irish Whiskey to kill any germs or at least make you feel a bit better if they’ve already managed to take hold. Unless the mercury around here suddenly takes a turn for the warmer, you’ll need one or two (or so…) of these to warm you body and soul after attending any St. Patrick’s Day parades. Both delicious and nutritious, so what are you waiting for? Sláinte!

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Whiskey & Orange Oat Cream Toddy

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

recipe from: The Complete Irish Pub Cookbook

Ingredients;

  • freshly squeezed juice of 6 large oranges
  • 1 – 1 1/2 Tablespoons honey, to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 Tablespoons Irish Whiskey
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons rolled oats, toasted

Directions:

Squeeze the juice from the oranges. You should have 1 1/2 cups juice.

Add the juice to a small saucepan. Add the honey and heat until hot. Do not boil

In the meantime, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Stir in 1 Tablespoon of the Whiskey.

Add the remaining 2 Tablespoons of whiskey to the hot orange juice.

Pour the mixture into 2 warm whiskey glasses. Top with a layer of whipped cream and sprinkle with toasted oats.

Enjoy!

Whiskey & Orange Oat Cream Toddy brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Links to Useful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Whiskey & Orange Oat Cream Toddy

Oxo Good Grips Double-Sided Citrus Juicer


Guinness S’Mores Icebox Pie

March 1, 2016

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Well goodness me! Is it March already?! Sure is, today is March 1st, which means it is time to start my annual St. Patrick’s Day blog-a-thon. In the days leading up to March 17th I will be sharing a delicious assortment of Irish-y recipes. I’ve been doing this for several years now, so I’ve collected over 80 St. Patrick’s Days recipes at this point and that doesn’t take into account all the delicious dishes coming your way this year. If you’d like to take a peek at my past St. Patrick’s Day posts, you can click Runcible Eat/Recipes up at the top navigation bar and scroll down to the St. Patrick’s Day category. That’s where you’ll find them! And stay tuned here for my latest culinary creations. I’m going to kick it all off this year with something sweet & boozy – Guinness S’mores Icebox Pie!

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Who doesn’t love S’mores?!! Rich chocolate, gooey marshmallows and crispy graham crackers…it just makes you nostalgic for times spent around the campfire. And what is that one thing that might make them just that little bit better? Guinness! It really adds such a lovely, rich flavor to all baked goods I’ve ever tried it in. And this pie is no exception. The chocolate/Guinness mixture is folded into whipped cream which gives the filling a light and airy chocolate mousse texture.

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The only other deviation I made from traditional S’mores is that rather than going with a traditional graham cracker crust, I decided to use a Digestive Biscuit crust instead. Digestive Biscuits are a favorite of mine. I first discovered them while living in Ireland and have been hooked ever since. They are similar to a graham cracker, but so much better in my humble opinion. You can find them in British/Irish specialty shops and occasionally in your local supermarket. But if all else fails, you can also get ahold of them on amazon.

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This pie is a “no bake” pie, which although it is still most decidedly Winter here, I’m sure I will be loving that “no bake” aspect once the hot and humid Virginia summer arrives. This Guinness S’mores Pie comes together really quickly and you just need to make sure you allow it to have some chill time in the freezer before you plan to serve it. Once the guests have arrived, simply break out that culinary torch and toast those marshmallows. Delightfully s’mores-y! It will certainly be a great addition to your St. Patrick’s Day feast!

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Guinness S'Mores Icebox Pie

  • Servings: 8 - 10
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Recipe slightly adapted from: The Beeroness

Ingredients:

For the Crust:

  • 250 grams Digestive Biscuits (can substitute in 1 1/2 cups (9 sheets) graham cracker crumbs- combine with 1/4 cup brown sugar and 4 Tablespoons butter)
  • 100 grams butter

For the filling:

  • 1/3 cup Guinness Stout
  • 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 1/3 cups (8.5 oz.) bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • pinch salt

For the topping:

  • 3 cups mini marshmallows

Directions:

Add the Digestive Biscuits to a food processor and process in bursts until fine crumbs remain. While the processor is running, add the melted butter until well combined.

Press mixture into the bottom of an 8″ Springform pan.

Place the Guinness, cocoa, and chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, microwave on high (in 15 second bursts) until melted, stirring frequently.

In the bowl of a stand mixer add the vanilla, heavy cream, powdered sugar and salt. Mix on high until medium peaks form. Turn the mixer down to low and slowly add the chocolate until incorporated.

Pour Guinness/cream mixture over the Digestive Biscuit crust and level with spatula.

Top with mini marshmallows.

Freeze pie until set – at least 2 hours.

Before serving, toast the marshmallows with a culinary torch.

Enjoy!

Guinness S’mores Icebox Pie brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Links to Useful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Guinness S’mores Icebox Pie:

8″ Springform Pan

Culinary Torch

Digestive Biscuits – McVities are the best!

Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer

Cuisinart Food Processor

 


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