BitterSweet

An Obsession with All Things Handmade and Home-Cooked

St. Patty’s

42 Comments

Leprechauns; Lucky four-leaf clovers; Soda Bread; Potatoes; Excessive amounts of beer; Green-colored anything and everything; These are the only things I know about St. Patrick’s Day, but with an understanding that’s as spotty as an inbred dalmatian at best, I couldn’t tell you how any of the above are interrelated here. Who is St. Patrick? What did he once do? Why are we celebrating him? The best answer ever offered tends to be along the lines of “…Does it really matter? Pass me another drink!” There is no doubt good reason to declare the 17th of March a holiday every year, and yet I still couldn’t tell you a single thing about it. Rather than fuss over the details, it really is better just to take the opportunity to make merry.

Happy to fill in the gaps on any day that give me an excuse to compose a special sweet treat, this one didn’t immediately fill me with dessert inspiration. Not wanting to go along the route of a big, boozy, knock-out grand finale, the options, like my knowledge of official St. Patrick’s Day traditions, were severely limited. At the last minute possible, it all began to fall into place. Potatoes were the start of this production, and remembering the old-fashioned formula for potato candy, the remaining pieces quickly fell into place.

Sweet, refreshing, and strongly minty, these soft patties are the green cousins to the typically chocolate-covered mint fondants. Contrasted by an emerald-colored coating of slightly bitter matcha, these mature treats are far more complex in flavor than their playful appearance might suggest.

Considering how last-minute this recipe is being delivered, you could certainly run with the idea and just use a simple coating of melted bittersweet chocolate instead… They simply won’t be nearly as festive. And for a holiday that I have the only loosest grasp on to begin with, I need all the bells and whistles I can get! Consider glamming up your patties with colored sugar or sprinkles, too.

Shamrock Patties

Mint Patties:

1/4 Cup Smooth Mashed Potatoes*
1 Tablespoon Non-Dairy Margarine
3 – 4 Cups Confectioner’s Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/4 Teaspoon Peppermint Oil**
Pinch Salt

Matcha Coating:

1/4 Cup (2 Ounces) Cocoa Butter
1/4 Cup Confectioner’s Sugar
1 Teaspoon Matcha Powder

Green Colored Sugar, if Desired

*Peel and chop one russet potato into small chunks. Boil for 7 – 10 minutes, until very tender, and drain thoroughly. Beat well either with the paddle attachment of your stand mixer, or a potato masher, until completely smooth and lump-free. Do not add any liquid or seasoning. Measure out 1/4 cup and reserve the rest for another use.

**Peppermint oil is much stronger than peppermint extract, and thus the two are not directly interchangeable. If you can’t get a hold of the oil, try substituting 3/4 – 1 1/4 teaspoons of extract, to taste, and bear in mind that you will likely need more confectioner’s sugar to make up for the added liquid.

Place your mashed potatoes in the bowl of your food processor fitted with the paddle attachment, or in you food processor. Add the margarine and cream the two together until smooth. Incorporate 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar to start, along with the vanilla, peppermint oil, and salt. Start on a slow speed, or pulse to combine. The mixture will likely look like thick icing at this point, so add in another cup of confectioner’s sugar, and once again mix on low. You’re looking for it to become the consistency of soft cookie dough; mailable, but not gooey or drippy. If it still seems to be too loose, mix in up to an additional cup of the sugar, as needed.

Turn the potato candy out onto a silpat or piece of parchment paper, and gently flatten it out to about 1/4 – 1/2 inch in thickness. To prevent sticking, either sprinkle on a very light dusting of confectioner’s sugar, or top it with a second silpat or sheet of parchment before taking the rolling pin to it. Stash your candy disk in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before proceeding.

Once chilled, pull out a small shamrock-shaped cookie cutter approximately 1-inch wide. Lay out a second silpat or piece of parchment on top of a baking sheet. Cut out your clovers, and transfer them to the prepared sheet. Gather up the candy scraps, re-roll, and cut again, until you’ve used all of the dough. Should the dough become too soft and finicky to work with, just toss it back in the fridge for another 15 – 30 minutes, and try once more. Now, stash the whole sheet of cut centers in the freezer for at least 30 minutes before getting to work on the coating.

Place your cocoa butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heat for 1 – 3 minutes, so that it completely liquefies. Meanwhile, mix together the remaining ingredients in a small dish, making sure that they’re thoroughly combined and that there are no clumps of matcha. Once the cocoa butter is melted, whisk in the dry ingredients, stirring vigorously to make sure that everything is completely dissolved into the molten fat.

Pull out your semi-frozen mint patties, and dip each into the matcha coating, one at a time. Place them back on the silpat, and watch the coating set up right before your eyes. This top coat is thinner than chocolate, so you may wish to double-dip once the first layer has solidified. If using, quickly sprinkle the decorate sugar over the dipped patties as soon as you set them down.

Make 3 – 4 Dozen Patties

Printable Recipe

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Author: Hannah Kaminsky

Author of My Sweet Vegan, Vegan Desserts, Vegan a la Mode, and Easy as Vegan Pie.

42 thoughts on “St. Patty’s

  1. How very cool! I love the fact that you used potatoes for a St. Patrick’s Day themed treat! I’m married to a mostly Irish man and I couldn’t tell you anything about the holiday other than he likes to consume a lot of seasonal beer and food cooked with the beer for several weeks leading up to the day. Other than that, the American version of being “Irish for a day” is rather ridiculous. Oh, well, pass me a green beer!

  2. OMG it’s just perfect ! You’re AMAZING Hannah !

  3. Oh, I love potato candy! What a wonderful way to make a festive treat, last minute. You rock! And that matcha coating sounds like a dreeeeam.

  4. Those are really cute, and a very unique treat!

  5. I have seen this potato candy business EVERYWHERE recently but before this week, I’d never heard of it! Yours is also the only one that uses actual potatoes. Which I love. It feels more authentic. Whatever that means :P

  6. They’re so cute! Some incredible ingenuity went into creating these, for sure.

  7. So cookies are incredibly cute! :D

  8. What a great idea! This is definitely the most creative St. Patty’s dessert post I’ve seen this year.

  9. Brilliant concept Hannah! Ricki used sweet potatoes in a truffle filling prior, yet it never occurred to me that potatoes could be used for a more neutral background!

  10. Love it!! Perfect for tomorrow :) I just love the green that the matcha powder provides!!!

  11. These are ADORABLE!! I don’t know much about the holiday either =/ I do love the Irish-American food that is made though!

  12. Oh, wow. I’m testing for the new Urban Vegan cookbook and she has a recipe for potato candies too, but I had no idea what the story was behind them, or what they were supposed to look like or anything. These look super cute, too!
    I’ll have to check out the differences between the recipes!

  13. Glad to know I’m not the only one who has no idea about the story behind St. Patrick’s Day, but hey if it’s an excuse to bake these cuties so be it!

    …but potatoes? this should be interesting.

  14. Adorable!! I’d love to try these~

  15. Heya lads, happy Paddy’s day! It seems like yous need a bonafide Irish person here to explain the meaning of Paddy’s day! It’s a celebration of our national patron saint, St Patrick who spread Christainity to Ireland in the 4th century, and as the myth goes banished the snakes from Ireland (there weren’t really any snakes though, it’s just a metaphor). It has always been a religious occasion but was declared a public holiday in the early 20th century, and is usually celebrated by drinking and parades and general festivities associated with not having to go to work :P

  16. And I’m actually Irish, not Irish-American by the way… everyone’s a plastic Paddy on Paddy’s day! :P

  17. Ok, those are officially the cutest St Patricks day cookies I’ve ever seen :D Awesome job daaaaaahling!
    *kisses* HH

  18. Wow these are just so perfectly shaped and I love how delicate the shell looks when it’s broken. A great St. Patty’s Day treat that I wish I could taste :).

  19. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I’ve never heard if potato candy before but these look amazing!! What a great treat for today :)

  20. Potatoes in sweets – i LOVE that idea.

  21. Wow, Hannah, these look great! You are brilliant.

  22. Brilliant! These are so lovely. I wish I had time today to make them!!

  23. These look delish! And I love the “secret ingredient!”

  24. Love love love those patties. Could you send some to me please? I will just keep them safe. Gosh they are so beautiful.

  25. OMG those are really cute. I thought that they were soap at first. Thanks for sharing. ;)

  26. I love your cookbook My Sweet Vegan. Every recipe I’ve tried from it has been awesome.

  27. Made these today, so good! It was hard to wait for them to set to eat one. Thanks for the recipe! Will totally make these again.

  28. Oh my gosh! I have never seen anything like this! So cute and fascinating in the ingredients composition!

  29. Awww.. these are so cute!
    xo
    Eco Mama

  30. These are genius!! Love the matcha & mashed potatoes. Potato candy is brilliant!

  31. Pingback: Flaxseed Green Tea Matcha Yogurt Parfait Recipe: Healthy Dessert Snack — Family Fresh Cooking

  32. Potatoes? Wow that was a new one for me! Lovin’ it!

  33. Waw!! You are oh so creative, girl!

    These shamrock patties look so adorable, beautiful & truly appetizing too!

  34. Wow, those look amazing! Your creativity never cease to amaze! :-)

  35. They are too cute..love them!!!

  36. Oh these are so adorable ans tasty looking!!

  37. Looks so yum! How awesomely creative. This is only the second candy I’ve seen that uses mashed potatoes… maybe I live under a rock. My coworker used to make peanut butter cups with mashed potatoes but she would never share the recipe!! grrrrr They were soooo goooood. :D

  38. I see that you linked India Tree sprinkles. They are in my opinion NOT vegan. I contacted the company about their sugar not long after becoming vegan and while they claim to be vegan they told me that they DO use bone char in their refining process but since none of it remains in the sugar after it is refined that they consider this to be negligible. Just letting you know. Thanks for posting so many amazing recipes!

  39. Hello

    We are very impressed by your matcha paties We would potentially like to use your image and recipe on our website http://www.koyumatcha.com

    Is this something that you would be interested in ? Is there something you would want from us in return ? Please let me know your thoughts

    Regards

  40. Pingback: Vegan St. Patrick's Day Recipes » Keepin' It Kind

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