It’s no secret I love tea. Afternoon tea, cream tea, or just a cuppa on a rainy day, I can’t get enough. So when the folks at Farmhouse Teas in Lyons, Oregon generously offered a taste of their wares, how could I refuse? I knew I wanted to incorporate one of their teas into a baked good, and naturally, macarons came to mind. After all, I’ve done this thing a time or two. Their Cascade Earl Grey tea blend combines organic, traditional Earl grey with lavender buds for a deep, earthy and floral sip. In my recipe for Lavender Earl Grey Macarons, I decided to flavor the macaron shell with this tea and sandwich them with a light, zesty lemon buttercream. I’ll let you see for yourself how they turned out.
First off, the tea is exceptional. Despite having totally different flavor profiles, both teas I tried are light, flavorful, without the slightest bitterness. (I’m saving the Coastal Cranberry Spice for fall/winter). They’re also gorgeous to look at. The Earl Grey has distinct lavender buds, and the Cherry City Chai is a riot of organic tea, ginger root, cherries, cinnamon, peppercorns, cloves, cardamom, cocoa nibs, start anise, and fennel seed. The Cascade Earl Grey was ideal for this recipe, as the flavor translated perfectly through the shell.
Lavender Earl Grey Macarons with Lemon Buttercream
These French macarons are lovely with lemon, lavender, and Earl Grey tea.
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup egg whites in a glass measuring cup
- pinch salt
- 2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon Earl Grey and lavender tea loose leaf, ground to a powder
- gel food coloring violet
- 1/4 cup butter softened
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1/2 lemon juiced
Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 300 degrees (275 if you have a hot oven). Sift together the powdered sugar and almond meal into a large bowl. Sift the tea into the mixture, discarding the large pieces.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, the sugar, and a pinch of salt until stiff and glossy (stiff peaks). Take a toothpick and add gel food coloring and mix until fully incorporated.
Pour almond mixture in the bowl, and using a rubber spatula, fold the ingredients together. It should take no more than 20 strokes. Deflate the egg whites but be gentle.
Stop once it oozes like lava but is nowhere near runny.
Using a spatula, transfer mixture to a gallon Ziplock bag.
Squeeze all the air and twist it closed. Snip the corner with scissors so that you have about a 1/4 inch opening.
Pipe dollops of batter slightly bigger than a Hershey's kiss onto the parchment.
Lightly rap each sheet on the counter to get rid of air bubbles.
Let them sit (after all have been piped) for at least 20 minutes.
They should be slightly dry to the touch and not sticky. If it's humid, turn on the air conditioner in your kitchen or blow a fan.
Bake in the oven (watching carefully) one batch at a time for 10-12 minutes.
You know they're done when they are hard and stiff to the touch.
Let them cool completely on the parchment while you prepare your buttercream.
Beat the butter in the mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. When it's light and fluffy, add the sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, until it's proper consistency. Add the lemon juice and extract and beat. Add more sugar if it's too runny, cream if it's too thick. Be sure to scrape the bottom.
To fill them, match each cookie to another of the same size. Pipe the filling, (in a Ziplock bag with the tip snipped) starting from the outer edge in a circle and ending in the middle. Sandwich the two halves.
No filling should be on the edges.
Refrigerate for 24 hours and up to 3-4 days.
Take some out an hour before you want to eat them and let them come to room temp. Enjoy
The Kosel family, who named their farm after St. Fiacre, the Patron Saint of Gardeners, offer tea classes at their farm, as well as a monthly subscription. If you’re as into tea as I am, you’ll want to check them out. Organic, limited edition blend loose leaf teas sent to your door? Yes, please.