Sunday March 16, 2014
St. Patrick's Day Dessert
It usually takes a bottle of food coloring to put a Saint Patrick’s Day dessert on the table, but I thought I’d share a few ways to celebrate with something a little tastier than dye. Even if these sweets don’t strike your fancy, you can use the key ingredients (basil, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, and matcha) to add a last minute splash of green to your own favorite recipes.
These baked custards get their color from a few big handfuls of fresh basil, ground into a pulp with sugar. Pair with a spoonful of strawberry or raspberry jam, or fresh berries when spring actually kicks into gear.
A handful of raw pumpkin seeds or pepitas will add a toasty crunch and bright dash of color, without any special effort at all. Skip the cinnamon and ginger for a more classic brownie, or keep the cozy flavor if you’re having a less than spring-like St. Patrick’s Day (it’s snowing in Kentucky at this very moment).
Cut or roll the chilled gianduja into truffles for dipping in chocolate, serve at room temperature over ice cream, or spread onto a slice of toast like Nutella. The nutty paste has a mellow creaminess from white chocolate, crunch bits and pieces of pistachio brittle, and pistachio oil for a deep, emerald green.
The bitterness of green tea tames the notorious sweetness of plain macarons, while adding an almost herbal aroma. You can double up on green by replacing the almonds with an equal weight of pistachios, or use pumpkin seeds for totally Nut Free macarons.
5 comments and counting
Mar 17, 2014 · 11:32 AM
These look great! I’ve never had a basil dessert before, so I’ll have to try the pots de creme. Naturally colorful desserts are the best.
· Baby June · philosophyandcake.blogspot.com
Mar 17, 2014 · 12:32 PM
These all look amazing! I slipped on the ice this morning and called in to work, so I might even have the opportunity to make one of these!
Hmm, if I can get my hands on some fresh basil, I might try for something with matcha AND basil. I know matcha pairs well with holy basil…
Mar 17, 2014 · 3:27 PM
Another green dessert I’ve only seen once uses green peas as a base for cake sponge – for cupcakes, layer cake or etc. It’s brilliant because peas are a naturally sweet veg and the color really comes through. I read it years ago on the blog, Vanilla Garlic.
Thank you for the pistachio gianduja recipe!
Mar 17, 2014 · 6:28 PM
I have matcha marshmallows waiting to be pulled out of the pan. Too rainy for outside s’mores, so off to find a torch in the basement.
· nytefalle · nytefalle.com/blog
Mar 18, 2014 · 3:01 PM
Hi Baby June! It’s really very lovely, aromatic and fresh. I hope you’ll try it sometime!
@Ruth, hope you recover soon! A slip on the ice is no joke. And basil + matcha is, in fact, totally awesome.
@tunie, green peas, eh? They do have a pleasantly sweet flavor, maybe I need to investigate a little deeper. Thanks for the tip!
@nytefalle, toasty matcha? Yes please!