Itsy-Bitsy Tipsy Spider Cupcakes

November 1, 2017

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So what in the world?!! I’m posting again so soon! Usually months go by between my posts. It must be some sort of Halloween miracle! It is just that I couldn’t wait to share these adorable Itsy-Bitsy Tipsy Spider cupcakes with you. I made them for our Halloween festivities last night, but then ran out of time to actually post the blog about them. So even though Halloween is over, I’m sharing this recipe anyway. You’ll be all set for next year.

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These cupcakes not only look fantastic, if I must say so myself, but they also taste amazing. The cake portion is a moist Guinness chocolatey, coffee cake. And then it is frosted with a smooth and velvety Baileys Swiss Meringue Buttercream. Oh be still my heart…I am in Cupcake Heaven! No wait….I mean to say the torturous depths of Hell (it is Halloween right?).

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Halloween is my favorite holiday! I mean, think about it…You get to dress weird, drink booze and eat candy for dinner. In fact all of that fun stuff is encouraged. How could you go wrong on such a day! Halloween actually has Irish origins. Our modern Halloween celebrations are derived from the Celtic holiday of Samhain. Samhain was Celtic New Year. It was a harvest festival which marked the dying of the sun-god and a turning to the colder, dormant half of the year. On this night, the Celts believed the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead was at its lowest point. The dead could more easily travel back over to our side, and if we weren’t careful, we could accidentally wander over in to their world and be trapped-a good reason to stay close to home and bonfires, no doubt! This belief likely gave rise to our Halloween legends of ghosts, ghouls and witches wandering about on this night in particular. I’ve posted some great Halloween recipes in past years ranging from the historically based traditional recipes such as:

Soul Cakes (Traditional Halloween/ Samhain)

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Yeasted Irish Barmbrack Bread (traditional Halloween/Samhain)

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Irish Tea Barmbrack with a Whiskey Honey Glaze (traditional Halloween/Samhain)

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To the more whimsical offerings such as:

White Chocolate Mummy Pretzels

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Halloween Cookies & Cream Owl Cupcakes

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Mini Mummy Brownie Bite Cupcakes

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As well as some wonderful boozy libations to kick your celebrations into high gear:

Fireball Cider Cocktail

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Roasty Toasty Cocktail

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This year’s Itsy Bitsy Tipsy Spider Cupcakes combine the whimsical and boozy together in one perfect Halloween treat! The little spider darlings (I mean horrible, terrible scary spiders) are fairly easy to make. I used two malted milk balls for the body and head (turns out Maltesers -the body- are slightly larger than Whoppers – the head), but you could also use a malted milk ball and a chocolate covered peanut. You get the idea. The legs are made with black candy melts. I piped them out onto parchment paper, let them harden and then attached them to the body with more candy melt. Then I used Wilton mini Candy eyes for their googly eyes. You could also probably use mini M&M’s here. And There you have it…. Itsy Bitsy Tipsy Spider Cupcakes!

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Truth be told I am terrified of spiders, so it is a bit weird that I decided to make these cupcakes. And  I’m not one of those girly girls that is scared of all bugs and mice and snakes. Nope, I pretty much like most bugs – mosquitos excepted – but it’s more hate where they are involved rather than fear. Snakes are pretty cool and I love mice. But spiders….no way!  I keep trying to make a treaty with them in which I will leave them alone as long as they are outside, but they are not allowed to come into my house. Rather than squish spiders that do venture inside despite the treaty, I show them mercy by capturing them and escorting them outside- all the while telling them that they must spread the word of our treaty to their friends. Those jerks agree at the time (spiders are full of deceit..), however once they get outside unscathed, I think they tell their little spider friends that I’m a softie and they shouldn’t worry about going into my house. Sigh….spiders are the worst! I’m just saying!

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Itsy-Bitsy Tipsy Spider Cupcakes

  • Servings: 20 - 24 cupcakes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Cake portion of the recipe from: Wife in Progress

Frosting recipe from: Handle the Heat

Ingredients:

For the Cakes:

  • 3/4 cups Guinness
  • 1/4 cup strong black coffee (or King Arthur Espresso Powder works well here)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup sour cream

For the Frosting:

  • 5 large (150 grams) egg whites
  • 1 1/4 cups (250 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 sticks (340 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream (or you could substitute Kahlua or your favorite)
  • green gel food coloring

For the Spiders: 

  • 24 Maltesers or Whoppers (Malted Milk Balls)
  • 24 chocolate covered peanuts or raisins (or just use another malted milk ball as I did)
  • 6 ounces Black or Dark Cocoa Candy Melts, melted
  • 48 (or more if you prefer – spiders sometimes have lots of eyes!) Candy eyes (small size)

Directions:

For the Cakes:

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C)

Line 2 cupcake tins with liners.

In a large saucepan heat Guinness, coffee and butter together until it comes to a gentle simmer.

Add cocoa powder while whisking continuously to avoid lumps. Mix until smooth. Place in refrigerator to cool.

Place flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in bowl. Set aside

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine eggs vanilla and sour cream.

Once the Guinness/cocoa mixture has cooled, add it to the egg/sour cream mixture. Mix until combined.

Add the flour mixture in 3 parts, mixing on low speed until just combined.

Using an ice cream scoop or 1/4 cup scoop, fill the lined cupcake tins.

Bake for 25 minutes

Cool completely on wire rack.

For the Frosting:

Wipe the bowl of an electric mixer with paper towel and lemon juice or vinegar to remove any trace of grease. Make a double boiler by placing the mixer bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water.

Add the egg whites and sugar to the bowl, whisking constantly but gently, until temperature reaches 140°F, or until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.

Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and begin to whip until the meringue is thick, glossy, and the bottom of the bowl no longer feels warm, about 7 to 10 minutes.

Switch over to paddle attachment and, with mixer on low speed, add the butter cubes, one at a time, until incorporated. Continue beating until it has reached a silky smooth texture. If the buttercream curdles simply keep mixing and it will come back to smooth. If the buttercream is too thin and runny, refrigerate for about 15 minutes before continuing mixing with paddle attachment until it comes together. Add the vanilla and salt, continuing to beat on low speed until well combined.

Add Baileys slowly, 1 Tablespoon at a time, and mix until well combined.

Add green food coloring gel to frosting until it reaches desired hue.

If you would like to make this frosting ahead of time, keep in airtight container in refrigerator for up to one week or in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let come to room temperature and rewhip in the mixer with the paddle attachment before using.

When you are ready to frost the cupcakes, place frosting in pastry bag fitted with whatever tip you desire and pipe frosting onto cupcakes.

Melt 6 ounces of Candy Melts in the microwave. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Pipe “L” shapes onto the parchment to form spider’s legs. Let harden.

Place a Malteser “spider body” on the center of the frosting. Place the chocolate peanut “head” in front of it. Pipe dots of melted chocolate on the side of the spider’s body to hold the legs in place. Gently place 3 – 4 legs on each side of the spider. Use a dot of the melted chocolate to stick the eyes onto the head.

Enjoy!

Links for helpful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Itsy Bitsy Tipsy Spider Cupcakes:
Maltesers
Wilton Mini Candy Eyes
Merkens Dark Cocoa Confectionary Melts
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Chocolate Dipped Baileys Pistachio Shortbread Cookies

March 15, 2017

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Oh my goodness, St. Patrick’s Day is nearly here! Today I’ve got a great little treat to share with you – Chocolate Dipped Baileys Pistachio Shortbread Cookies! Yes siree, now we’re cooking with gas! Absolutely scrumptious buttery shortbread cookies, shot through with Pistachios and lashings of Baileys Irish Creme and then dipped in  Bailey’s laced Chocolate and dusted with more pistachios.

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Be still my heart! How could anyone resist these tempters?

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These boozy little devils will be welcome at any Patrick’s Day celebration and they’re portable so you can take ’em on the road with you – down to the local parade and then out to the afters parties.

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You definitely want to make sure you keep up your strength throughout the day’s festivities. These decadent little dickens are just the thing to keep you going. And if you’re in a sharing mood, no doubt you’ll be quite popular. Bake up a batch today.

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Chocolate Dipped Baileys Pistachio Shortbread Cookies

  • Servings: 46 - 2 1/2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Recipe slightly adapted from: Recipes From a Pantry

Ingredients:

For the Cookies:

  • 250 grams (8.8 oz) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 100 gram (3.5 oz) caster sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 orange
  • 4 Tablespoons Baileys
  • 250 grams (8.8 oz) all purpose flour
  • 125 grams (4.40z) rice flour
  • 5 Tablespoons pistachios, chopped
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon all spice
  • pinch of freshly ground nutmeg

For the chocolate/pistachio glaze:

  • 150 grams chocolate (your choice – dark, milk or a blend)
  • 2 Tablespoons Baileys
  • 5 Tablespoons Pistachios (finely chopped)

Directions:

Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer and cream them together until light and fluffy. Mix in the orange juice and Baileys. Add the flours, chopped pistachios, salt and spices and continue to mix until a soft dough forms. If the mixture is not pulling away from the sides of the bowl and seems too sticky to handle, slowly add flour by the scant Tablespoon just until it comes together.

Divide the dough in two and flatten each into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least one hour.

Preheat the oven to 325°F (170°C/Gas 3)

Remove one of the dough discs from the fridge and roll int out on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/4″ thick. Cut cookies with sharp cutter and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Reshape, roll and cut any excess dough until it is all used. Place cut trays of cookies in fridge to keep cool until you are ready to bake them.

Bake shortbread for 12 -15 minutes, or until they are light golden brown.

Let the cookies cool on the tray from 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once cookies are cool, combine the Baileys and Chocolate and slowly melt over a double boiler. Dip half of each shortbread cookie into the chocolate mixture. Shake the excess chocolate off and sprinkle with finely chopped pistachios. Set cookies aside until chocolate hardens. (Too speed this process, you can place cookies in the fridge.)

Enjoy!

Chocolate Dipped Baileys Pistachio Shortbread Cookies brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Links to Helpful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Chocolate Dipped Baileys Pistachio Shortbread Cookies:

OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Food Scale

Kitchen Aid Artisan Stand Mixer

Norpro Silicone Pastry Mat

Norpro Nut Chopper

Norpro Scalloped Cookie/biscuit cutters

Bob’s Red Mill White Rice Flour

 


Boozy Irish Brownie Bites

March 13, 2017

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Boozy Irish Brownie Bites?!! Now we’re talking! These rich, decadent little gems are chock full of Irish Whiskey and frosted with a white chocolate, Baileys and Whiskey Ganache! I’m telling you, there is no way you could go wrong here. And just a warning, these guys are indeed boozy. I took care to add those spirits after the ganache was removed from heat, so there is no “oh the alcohol cooked off” with these darling treats. It is all there. Another thing that is absolutely great about these little guys is their diminutive size. You can literally just grab one and pop the whole thing right into your mouth.

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You know, just a small bite, a wee taste if you will, just in case you don’t really want to commit to eating a whole big honking brownie.

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Now, I’m sure that sounds good in theory and I know there are folks out there that have that kind of “I’ll just take a taste” self-restraint. I’m not really one of them. I just end up eating a plate of these irresistible little devils over the span of the evening. But hey, no regrets. St. Patrick’s Day only comes once a year. You should definitely enjoy it!

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Boozy Irish Brownie Bites

  • Servings: 32- 34 Brownie Bites or 16 Regular sized Brownies
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

recipe slightly adapted from: Vintage Kitty

Ingredients:

For the brownies:

  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 9 Tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup Irish Whiskey
  • 3/4 Cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup flour

For the Ganache:

  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon salted butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • pinch of salt
  • 8 oz. white chocolate, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Baileys Irish Cream
  • 2 Tablespoons Irish Whiskey

Directions:

For the Brownies:

Preheat oven to 325° F and line a 8″ square pan with parchment paper.

Slice the vanilla bean and scrape the seed outs.

Place the seeds and the pod in a medium sized dutch oven.

Add the butter and sugar to the pan and melt over medium heat, stirring frequently.

Once sugar has melted, remove vanilla bean pod.

Sift cocoa into the butter mixture and stir to combine.

Remove pan from heat and let mixture cool a minute or two. Add whiskey and stir to combine.

Add the flour and stir just until it is incorporated.

Pour brownie batter into prepared pan and bake for 20 -25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out mostly clean.

Set brownies to cool on a metal rack.

For the Ganache:

While the brownies are cooling, combine sugar, butter, heavy cream and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently.

Let the mixture boil for 2-3 minutes.

Remove from heat and slowly add the white chocolate, stirring until it is completely melted and smooth.

Slowly add the Baileys and Irish Whiskey, stirring until combined.

Pour the ganache over the warm brownies and spread with a spatula.

Allow ganache to harden over an hour or so.

If you wish to serve regular brownies, go ahead and slice them and enjoy. If you wish to make smaller brownie bites as I did here, use whatever shaped small cookie cutter to cut the brownies. I used a 1 1/2″ circle cutter.

Enjoy!

Boozy Irish Brownie Bites brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

 


Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting

March 10, 2016

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So…here we are…The Sixth Day of my St. Patrick’s Day blog-a-thon. And today, not only am I sharing a mouthwateringly amazing recipe for Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting, but things are really getting ready to heat up here in my kitchen. That’s right, a veritable Irish-y recipe blitz is now underway. Up until today I had posting every other day, but from now until St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th, you’ll hear from me every day. Seven more delicious recipes coming to you in rapid fire succession! I hope you’ll be checking back in. But let’s not lose sight of the deliciousness before us today in these Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting. What we’ve got here is a lovely sweet Guinness infused yeasted dough which has been filled with buttery brown sugar and pistachios and frosted with a Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting. They’re soft, fluffy, sticky, boozy perfection I tell you.

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I first saw this recipe over at the Blahnik Baker site and just knew I had to make it. I use a slightly different recipe and technique for making the dough than she does. I rely on yeast for all the rise whereas she uses a bit of baking soda and powder as well. Looks interesting, but I was pretty comfortable with the way I knew to do yeast dough, so you know that saying about old dogs and new tricks…I went with what I knew and was very happy with the results.

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As was the Husband. He calls these little gems “Guinness Sticky Buns” rather than their rather long-winded name. In fact, I considered changing the recipe title to that, but found out that Sticky Buns are actually different from what we have here. A true sticky bun is made by lining the baking tin with syrup, honey and nuts before the dough is placed on top. Once it has baked it is inverted so that the lining becomes a sticky topping. Sounds delicious as well, but that isn’t what we have here, so Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls it remains (except in this house where Guinness Sticky Buns stubbornly persists).

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It really doesn’t matter what you call them, just make sure you bake up a batch for an extra special St. Patrick’s Day breakfast treat. After all, there’s nothing like a little Guinness & Baileys to get your busy day of celebrations off to a great start!

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Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Servings: 16 rolls
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

recipe inspired by: Blahnik Baker

Ingredients:

For the Rolls:

  • 1 ½ cups whole milk
  • ½ cup Guinness draft beer
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour (+ a bit more as needed)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the filling:

  • ½ cup butter
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup shelled pistachios, chopped

For the Frosting:

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoon Baileys Irish Cream, or more to taste
  • ½ to 1 cup confectioner’s sugar

Directions:

For the Rolls:

In a large saucepan, heat the milk, Guinness, oil and granulated sugar over medium heat to just below a boil.

Remove the pan from heat. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer and allow it to cool to warm (98° – 105° F). Once the milk/Guinness mixture has cooled, sprinkle the yeast over the top and let it sit for 5 minutes. It should look foamy once time is up.

With the mixer running on its lowest speed, start to add the flour 1 cup at a time until the dough starts to pull away from the side of the bowl.

Scrape the dough down and allow it to rest for 5 minutes to fully hydrate the flour. Switch to the dough hook attachment and knead for 6 minutes.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter. Shape it into a ball and place it into a lightly oiled dough rising bucket (or large bowl). Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm spot to rise until it is doubled, approximately 1 hour (could be more or less depending on how warm your kitchen is.) At this point you can proceed with baking or place the dough in the refrigerator over night.

Once you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375° F. Lightly oil two 9″ pie plates, or cake pans. I had 3 buns which did not fit into my pie pans, so I also used a small 6″ cast iron skillet. You could actually also bake 1/2 of the rolls in a large 9 -10″ cast iron skillet if you prefer.

Assembly:

Remove the dough from bucket and gently deflate. Weigh the dough and divide it in half.

Place the first half dough ball on a silicone pastry mat or lightly floured kitchen counter. Roll it out to a rectangle, measuring about 12 x 8 inches. Paint the melted butter over the dough using a pastry brush. Leave a 1/2″ margin on all sides unbuttered. Sprinkle half of the brown sugar and then half of the pistachios over the melted butter. To roll, start at the end farthest away from you and roll the rectangle towards you. Use both hands and roll tightly. Finish with the seam side down, pinching together any loose ends and rolling back and forth several times on the counter.

Using a sharp knife (or long strand of unflavored dental floss) gently cut the dough into 1 1/4 – 1 1/2″ slices and arrange them in the prepared baking tins.

Repeat this process for the second half of the dough.

Cover the baking tins with plastic wrap and allow the rolls to rise until they look puffy – approximately 30 minutes – 1 hour.

Remove the plastic wrap and place the buns in the preheated oven. Bake for 20 -22 minutes or until golden and bubbling.

Remove from oven to cooling rack and let cool for 10 -15 minutes.

For the frosting:

Prepare the Baileys frosting while the rolls are baking. Place the room temperature cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the milk and the Baileys and mixing until smooth. Slowly (like 1 tablespoon at a time) add the confectioner’s sugar. Wait until the first tablespoon has thoroughly mixed in before adding the second. Continue to add confectioner’s sugar until the frosting reaches the desired consistency.

Load frosting into a pastry bag fitted with round tip. Pipe over warm rolls. (You can also just use a spatula to spread the frosting over the top of all of the rolls, as you wish.)

Serve warm.

Enjoy!

Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)

Links to Useful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls:

Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Sauce Pan

Thermoworks Super-Fast Thermapen Cooking Thermometer

Kitchen Aid Artisan Stand Mixer

6 Quart Dough Rising Bucket

Norpro Silicone Pastry Mat

SAF Instant Yeast

Le Creuset 9″ Stoneware Pie Dish

Le Creuset 6 1/3″ Cast Iron Frying Pan

 


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 Coffee Scones with Whiskey Butter

March 9, 2013

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Here it is, Day 9 of my St. Patrick’s Day countdown and I think it’s time for another yummy breakfast treat. We haven’t had one since back on Day 1 when I posted about those irresistible Chocolate & Raspberry Buttermilk Doughnuts. Not that I’m opposed to the occasional slice of cold pizza, or even better, cold, left over french fries for breakfast. But I’m talking about a recipe for “official”  or ” classic” breakfast food. How about some lovely Irish Coffee Scones? Yeah, scones are perfect for breakfast. And these are for St. Patrick’s Day, so let’s do this thing up right. It’s a special occasion. Not an everyday thing. These scones have coffee, which is an essential for breakfast. And they have Baileys, I think we have established how I feel about the Baileys Irish Cream. It has been in high rotation in my recent culinary creations. So all that is missing for these to be a well-rounded St. Patrick’s Day breakfast would be a nice shot of Jameson. Oh…I’ve got it! We’ll stick it in the butter! Whiskey Butter….that’s what I’m talking about! How fantastic, Irish Coffee Scones with Whiskey Butter!

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These Irish Coffee Scones are very moist, quite tender and definitely have a pronounced coffee-y/Baileys flavour. They are very light, almost more cake-like than biscuit/scone like, perhaps due to the addition of the cake flour. They are pretty easy to make, though I will say the dough is quite sticky, so just make sure your hands and prep surface are well floured. As long as you’ve got that covered, you’ll be fine. As with all scones, make sure your butter is very cold when you cut it into the flour and once you’ve added liquid to your dry ingredients, handle the dough as little and as gingerly as possible, otherwise your scones will be tough. Make sure that you don’t forget to sprinkle sugar-in-the-raw over the top of your scones, as it gives them a really lovely crunchy texture. And oh….when serving these delectable little morsels, the Whiskey Butter is not optional. It is a requirement! Start St. Patrick’s Day off right and bake up a batch!

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Irish Coffee Scones with Whiskey Butter

recipe from: Buttercream Blondie

yield: 8 scones

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cold & cubed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup strong coffee
  • 1/4 cup Baileys Irish Cream

Directions:

Brew coffee & set aside to cool.

Combine dry ingredients together in a bowl.

Cut in cold, cubed butter.

Whisk eggs with cool coffee and Baileys.

Add to dry ingredients and mix till it comes together. This is a wet dough at first & kind of sticky.   It will come together.

Turn dough out onto a well floured surface.

Pat dough out into a circle.  You can use a rolling pin if you want, I use my hands to shape it. ( I divided the dough in half and patted each dough half into a circle, for a more petite scone. This dough is quite sticky, so make sure your surface, as well as your hands are well floured.)

Slice dough into 8 wedges (or if you have divided the dough into two halves, cut it into 4 wedges) & refrigerate until ready to bake.  Make sure the dough is cold when it goes into the oven.

Brush with heavy cream & sprinkle with sugar in the raw.

Bake at 400° F  for 15-20 minutes, rotating once halfway through.

Whiskey Butter

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Irish whiskey  (I used Jameson)
  • pinch of salt

Whip butter with whiskey and salt.

Enjoy!


Baileys, Cacao Nib & Oatmeal Cookies

March 8, 2013

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Oh Baileys! Why do you have to be so delicious! You just seem to go great in everything! And these little cookies are no exception. Baileys, chocolate chips, cacao nibs and oatmeal, what a fantastic line-up. These cookies are really some thing special. They are a bit crispy yet also chewy and bursting with the decadent flavours of Bailey’s and chocolate.

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I was lucky enough to have baked these up the night before our most recent snow storm. So I was able to spend my “snow day” nibbling on these little gems and washing them down with big steaming mugs of Scáiltín. Lucky me!

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Now you might be wondering what a “cacao nib” is. I know I sure was when I first ran across this recipe. Cacao Nibs are tiny chips of the roasted cocoa beans, essentially raw chocolate. They are not sweet, but taste rather nutty and perhaps a bit like chocolate, but more like a roasted coffee bean.

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They add great texture and interesting depth of flavour to baked goods. I’ve seen them listed as ingredients in various recipes out in internet land, but had no idea where to find them. I think I finally found them in a kitchen specialty store, though I have since been told that Whole Foods carries them. And of course, there is always Amazon. Worse case scenario, make these cookies up for St. Patrick’s Day without the nibs. I’m sure they’ll still be an excellent and tasty source of energy to keep you going strong through all of your celebrations. When you are able to find Cacao Nibs, make up another batch.

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Baileys, Cacao Nib & Oatmeal Cookies

recipe from: Violets and Cardamom

yield: 30 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened (equal to 1 stick)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cup Old Fashioned oats, ground or whole
  • 1/4 cup Cocoa Nibs
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup Irish creme liqueur

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350° F. Cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is fluffy (about 3 minutes).

Add the egg and beat for another minute.

Add the vanilla and Irish Cream and beat until well mixed.

In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Then add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until just incorporated.

Fold in the remaining ingredients making sure everything is mixed well. The dough should be pretty firm.

Scoop out the dough and place on either a parchment covered cookie sheet or on a greased cookie sheet. Make sure to space them out well as they do spread.

Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden on the outside. Let cool on cookie sheet for five minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!


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