Make the macarons: In a medium bowl, sift together the almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, and cocoa powder and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites
on medium speed until foamy. Continue to beat until your whisk begins leaving
visible trails in the foamy egg whites.
Once you can see trails, gradually add the granulated sugar, increase the mixer
speed, and whip on high until the meringue forms stiff peaks. (Be sure not to
over-whip your egg whites otherwise you risk drying them out.)
Remove the bowl from the stand mixer, add the dry
ingredients to the meringue and fold with a rubber spatula from the bottom of
the bowl upward then press the flat side of your spatula through the middle
against the side of the bowl. (The batter will look very thick at first, but it
will get thinner as you fold.) Continue folding until the batter gets to a
lava-like consistency. Pro Tip:
The figure 8 test is a great way to check your batter’s consistency; pick up
the batter with your spatula and let it flow down into the bowl while drawing
the figure “8”. If it can do that without the batter breaking, immediately stop
Transfer the batter into a large pastry bag with a medium-sized round tip, such as a Wilton 2A plain round tip. Holding the piping bag at a 90 ̊ angle to the surface, pipe
out the batter into 1.5-inch rounds about an inch apart on a baking sheet lined
with parchment paper. (Feel free to print out a macaron template if you’re
worried about size/uniformity). Sprinkle crushed peppermint on the top of each shell,
Holding the baking sheet with both hands, carefully bang the sheet firmly on the
counter a few times to get rid of any air bubbles. (If you don’t release the air
bubbles, they will expand during baking and crack your beautiful macarons
Repeat the piping and banging process until you have used up all the batter (usually about three sheet pans worth.)
Let the macarons rest and dry for 30 minutes or until a skin has developed; on a
humid day, it might take an hour or more. To see if it’s ready to be baked,
lightly touch it. If the batter doesn’t stick to your finger, then it’s ready.
(Don’t forget to remove the macaron templates, if using, before baking!)
While the macarons are resting, preheat the oven to 300˚F (150˚C) and position the
oven rack in the center of the oven.
Bake the macarons, one tray at a time, for 18-20 minutes, rotating the pan once
halfway through the cooking process.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the sheet pan for 10 minutes before peeling off the parchment paper and cooling completely on a wire rack. (If the bottoms are a tiny bit sticky, keep them on the tray to cool off for an additional
10-15 minutes. If, however, the bottoms are already brown, they peel off cleanly, or they appear over-baked, then carefully take them off the tray immediately to cool down.) Repeat the baking process with the remaining sheet pans.
It’s always better to over- rather than under-bake your macarons as the
maturation process can typically salvage ones that are over-baked.
Make the white chocolate peppermint ganache frosting: Heat heavy cream up until just simmering and pour it over the chopped white chocolate. Let the cream and chocolate mixture sit for 3 minutes.
Add the peppermint extract, then whisk the mixture together in one direction until combined and smooth.
Cover the bowl with a piece of plastic wrap pressed on the top of the ganache and place in the refrigerator to let it cool until it firms up, about 1 hour.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the ganache until
it’s a light & fluffy frosting consistency.
Transfer the white chocolate peppermint ganache frosting into a pastry bag and fill the macarons, then gently sandwich together.