It seems that people have mixed feelings about New Year’s.  Some are of the “hey, it’s just like any other day” mindset, while others (myself included) think it’s as good a reason as any to get together with friends and have a great time.  And it usually seems to involve sequins or sparkles, which I also love.  This year many of our friends are home with new babies (yay!) so our plans tonight will be on the low-key side, but I guarantee that even at home with kids, we will make sure everyone has a great time.

If you do have plans, whether you are hosting or attending elsewhere, I thought I’d propose a festive treat idea.  French macarons filled with champagne Swiss meringue buttercream.  The perfect reason to test out your newfound macaron-making skills!  The champagne flavor is a bit subtle since it’s tough to add much without ruining the filling, but no matter.  It’s still there and paired with a glass of champagne, well…I’d say it’s just perfect.  Another fun idea would be to fill some macarons with strawberry Swiss meringue buttercream to make a little play on the classic pairing of strawberries and champagne.  As if I needed another reason to make that strawberry amazingness.  Gah.

Whether you have big plans, small plans, or no plans at all this evening, I hope each and every one of you has a very happy New Year!  Thanks for being such a wonderful part of my 2012.  I’m looking forward to much more fantastic food and great conversation with you all in 2013.

  • Yield about 2 dozen sandwich cookies


For the cookies: 
1 batch plain macaron shells

For the filling: 
1 cup champagne
2½ large egg whites (about 75 grams)
½ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 cup (16 tbsp.) unsalted butter, at room temperature

Edible glitter (optional)


  • 01

    Prepare macaron shells as directed and pair up by size.  Set aside.

  • 02

    In a small saucepan, bring the champagne to a simmer over medium heat.  Allow to simmer about 10 minutes, until reduced to ¼ cup.  Remove from heat and let cool completely.

  • 03

    To make the frosting, combine the egg whites, sugar and salt in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water.  Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160° F and the sugar has dissolved.

  • 04

    Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes.  Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated.  If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more (don’t worry, it will come together!)

  • 05

    Add the champagne 1 tablespoon at a time, allowing each addition to be fully incorporated before adding the next.  It may seem to separate, but the frosting will come back together after another minute or two of beating.  Transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a plain round tip.  Pipe a small dollop of the champagne frosting onto the flat side of one cookie of each pair.  Sandwich together with the remaining cookie, pushing the filling to the edges.  Top with a sprinkle of edible glitter, if desired.  Store in an airtight container.