Hello friends! Today is very special! And yes, partly because these St Patrick’s Day Macarons are super festive, filled with rich Guinness Ganache, but also because I am finally posting a macaron recipe with a new method, today we are making these macarons using the French Method!
If you’ve been here on the blog for a while, you know I’ve been making my macarons using the Swiss Method, as you can see in over 60 macaron recipes I have here.
However, I have been experimenting with a different method, the French.
I do love the Swiss method, it has worked for me for such a long time, and many of you report it being your favorite method as well.
So why change?
Here are the reasons why I decided to perfect the French method as well:
The French method doesn’t require a syrup to be made, unlike the Swiss, where you make a syrup with the whites and sugar over a double boiler, before whipping them.
And yes while it’s only a few minutes extra of work making the syrup, you also have to use a double boiler, a whisk, and an extra bowl.
So, the French method may save you time in making macarons and also doing the dishes afterwards.
I am a food blogger, time spent in the kitchen and dishes to wash do not scare me. But I appreciate being able to save some of both every now and then!
While I know many people who make the Swiss method report not resting the macarons before baking them. However I haven’t been able to do that with my Swiss method recipe. Maybe it’s the proportion of ingredients, but if I bake the macarons made with the Swiss method without resting, they crack.
However, with the French method I used to make these St Patrick’s Day Macarons, I have been able to successfully bake the macarons right after piping!
Bottom line, if you are looking to save some time, this might be the method for you!
I feel like I bake full shells more consistently with the French method than with the Swiss method.
Most times when my shells are hollow it’s because I’ve over whipped the meringue, or over baked the shells. However, I feel like the French method is more forgiving in this department.
The shells made with the French method have been full right after baking.
Ps. if you are experiencing hollow shells, do know that sometimes they fill up as the macaron matures overnight once you’ve filled them.
Shape and feet
I feel like the French method produces shells that are a bit more plump, and round, with taller feet.
And often times, the Swiss method is known for producing shells that are a bit flatter, and with smaller feet.
Ok, now that I’ve covered the advantages of the French method over the Swiss, I will say this. Macarons are a journey, find the method and the recipe that work better for you!
Even the oven temperature can vary from your oven to mine, using the exact same recipe! Macarons are VERY particular!
The Swiss method does produce a more stable meringue, so I think it’s more suitable for beginners and people trying to nail macarons. While the French might be better for more experienced bakers who know their way around meringue. But I’ve seen plenty of people do really well with the French method from the beginning.
And this means what we already know, that macarons are extremely peculiar, and vary greatly depending on who’s making them, on what kind of environment, weather, oven, how they are mixing it. Yes, even the strength applied to fold the batter will affect the results. The brands of ingredients you are using will affect the results. And even your mood will affect the results. I am not even kidding!
Seriously don’t go in the kitchen all moody and full of an attitude to bake macarons, cause they will give you an attitude right back!
Ok, about these St Patrick’s Day Macarons!
Have I mentioned how they are filled with a Guinness Chocolate Ganache?
Well, they are! Simply chocolate chips (or chopped chocolate) of your preference – use dark for a rich and deep ganache, or milk for a sweeter, more decadent taste, and semi-sweet for somewhere in between – mixed with hot heavy cream and Guinness beer.
After making the ganache, let it set in the fridge for 30 to 40 minutes, or let it come to room temperature on the counter, which should take a couple of hours. If it is still too soft, insert it in the fridge for a bit to harden up slightly.
I hope you enjoyed today’s recipe for my beautiful St Patrick’s Day Macarons!
Check down below some of the products I use to make my macarons!
To make the vibrant green color I added a few drops of yellow, and a few drops of blue in the same proportion. I am not sure how much I’ve added but somewhere between 5 and 10 drops of each, I forgot to count.
These are the piping bags I use.
And these are the air tight containers I use to store my macarons in the fridge or freezer.
These were the gold sequin sprinkles I used to decorate the shells.
Here are some more macaron flavors you might enjoy:
- Oreo Macarons
- Earl Grey Macarons
- Orange Macarons
- Chocolate Strawberry Macarons
- Nutella Macarons
- Brownie Macarons
- Chocolate Macarons
- Raspberry Chocolate Macarons
- Orange Macarons
Thanks for reading! Have a beautiful day!
St Patrick’s Day Macarons
- 2 baking sheets
- 2 silicone mats (or parchment paper)
- 1 large piping bag with a large round tip
- Electric mixer
French Method Shells
- 100 grams almond flour 3.5 oz
- 100 grams powdered sugar 3.5 oz
- 6 grams cornstarch 0.2 oz
- 77 grams egg whites 2.7 oz
- 70 grams granulated sugar 2.4 oz
- Gel food coloring
- 200 grams chopped chocolate or chocolate chips
- 1/3 cup heavy cream 78 ml
- 1/4 cup Guinness beer 60 ml
French Method Shells
- Pre-heat the oven to 300ºF.
- Before you start, get the ingredients and materials ready.
- Prepare a large piping bag fitted with a round tip.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mat.
- I use a silicone mat that already comes with a template to pipe the macarons. You can make your own template or print from the internet, and place it under the parchment paper or blank silicone mat.
- Measure out all of the ingredients.
- Sift the almond flour, powdered sugar, and cornstarch together. Set aside.
- Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer.
- With the whisk attachment, begin to whip the egg whites on low speed for about 30 seconds, until they start to foam up.
- Raise the speed to medium and whip for another minute, until the egg whites begin to look white in color and start to increase in volume.
- Raise the speed to high, and whip for a few minutes until you reach stiff peaks. I can’t recommend how long exactly to whip the egg whites for, this will vary greatly depending on the mixer you are using.
- At this point, start to gradually add the granulated sugar.
- Once the whites are glossy, you see the whisk of the mixer forming streaks in the meringue, you might be done whipping.
- The stiff egg whites should have pointy peaks shooting right up, with maybe a slight very small bent at the top.
- Add the food coloring to the meringue. Also pour in the sifted dry ingredients.
- Begin folding the batter with a spatula, in a J letter motion. This is called the macaronage.
- It’s time to stop folding when the batter looks glossy, and has a thick but flowing consistency.
- How to know when to stop folding the batter.
- First, pick up some batter with the spatula and begin to draw a figure 8 with the batter that is dripping off the spatula.
- If you can form several figure 8s with the spatula without the batter breaking up, it might be time to stop folding.
- There’s another test I like to perform, I call it the Teaspoon test.
- Grab a teaspoon full of batter and spoon onto the parchment paper or silicone mat. Give the baking sheet a little tap against the counter, and wait 1 minute. Watch how the batter behaves.
- If the batter spreads out slightly, but becomes smooth on top, it might be time to stop folding.
- If the spoonful of batter still has a peak on top, and hasn’t spread out too much, the batter needs to be folded a bit longer. In that case, fold it about 3 more times, and test again.
- You don’t want the batter to be too runny either. Be careful not to over mix. It’s always best to under mix, and keep testing until you achieve the proper consistency, but once you over mix, there’s no way of going back.
- The best way I can describe this stage being perfect is when you hold the spatula with batter on top of the bowl and the batter falls off the spatula slowly but effortlessly. The batter will keep flowing off the spatula non-stop, but not too quickly.
- Pour the batter in the piping bag.
- Place the piping bag directly 90 degrees over the center of each macaron template. Apply equal pressure and carefully pipe for about 3 seconds, and then quickly pull the bag up twisting slightly.
- Once you’ve piped as many circles as you could, bang the trays against the counter a few times each. This will release air bubbles that are in the batter and prevent your macaron shells from cracking.
- Use a toothpick to pop any air bubbles in the surface of the shells.
- With this method, you don’t need to rest the batter. You can immediately start baking, one tray at a time.
- I like to rotate my tray after the first 5 minutes baking to ensure even baking, you might not have to do that depending on how even the heat distribution is in your oven.
- Each tray should be baked from 15 to 17 minutes. It might vary according to your oven.
- Always make sure to have an oven thermometer in place.
- When baked the macarons will have a deeper color, will have formed feed. If you touch a macaron, it shouldn’t feel jiggly. If the macaron is still jiggly, keep baking for another minute or so, and test again.
- Remove the tray from the oven, and bake the next tray.
- Let the macarons cool down completely before removing them from the silicone mat, or parchment paper.
- Heat the heavy cream and Guinness beer until they almost come to a boil.
- Pour over chopped chocolate, or chocolate chips.
- Let it sit for a minute.
- Whisk the mixture together until the chocolate has melted completely.
- If the chocolate is not melting and you still see little chunks of chocolate in the ganache, microwave the bowl for 5 second intervals, whisking in between, until all the chocolate has melted.
- Place the ganache in the fridge for about 40 minutes, until it cools down completely and firms up. Don’t leave it in the fridge too long or it might become too hard to pipe.
- Place the ganache in a piping bag fitted with a small piping tip.
- Pipe a small amount of ganache on half of the shells. Top with another shell.
- You can also drizzle some ganache on top of the macarons and top with sprinkles to decorate.
- These St Patrick's Macarons can be stored in the fridge for up to 7 days, or in the freezer for up to 2 months. They will freeze pretty well. Check the post above to see the container I use to freeze my macarons.