Posts Tagged ‘peppermint’

Chocolat Mint Meltaway Cookies

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

My mom, sister, and my sister’s boyfriend David came over on Saturday to do some baking. They chose a number of tasty treats and then we spent all day making them. It was a long day, but a lot of fun. And I got to try a few different recipes, which is always fun!

This recipe came from my Bon Appetit Cookbook. The finished cookies taste a lot like Mint Milano cookies, which is a good thing. The cookie itself is light and airy, with a soft crunch. We piped the cookies, as the recipe suggests, though I’ve read in other places now that other people just roll them into balls and flatten them to get round cookies. Seems like that would probably work. The ganache we ended up with was a bit thin. Not sure if it’s because we didn’t use as high-quality chocolate as the recipe suggests, or if something else went wrong. We ended up with a thin layer of the ganache, and then because it was so sticky, we just drizzled chocolate over the bottoms, instead of trying to dip the cookies. The instructions below are for the correct method, which I think would turn out prettier than ours. The good news is the cookies tasted fantastic—we didn’t mess that part up!

meltaway cookies

Chocolate Mint Meltaway Cookies
Adapted from
The Bon Apetit Cookbook

Ingredients

For Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

For Ganache Filling

  • 1/4 cup whipping cream, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 9 ounces imported white chocolate, chopped (such as Lindt)
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

For Chocolate Coating

  • 9 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (we used chips)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening

Directions

For Cookies:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F Butter 2 heavy large cookie sheets. Using electric mixer, cream butter and extracts in medium bowl until light. Beat in sugar. Beat in half of flour. Stir in remaining flour. Place the dough into a piping bag fitted with large star tip. Pipe into two inch ovals onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake until golden brown on edges, about 12 minutes. Transfer to paper towels and cool.

For Ganache:

2. Bring cream and butter to simmer in heavy small saucepan over low heat. Add chocolate and stir until smooth. Mix in extract. Refrigerate just until firm enough to spread, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes.

3. Line two cookie sheets with foil. Using a small metal icing spatula, spread 1 teaspoon ganache over the flat side of each cookie. Arrange ganache side up on foil-lined cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining cookies. Refrigerate until ganache is firm, about 30 minutes.

For Coating:

4. For coating: Melt bittersweet chocolate and vegetable shortening in top of double boiler over simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove from over water.

5. Grasp cookie on sides and dip ganache side into bittersweet chocolate; shake cookie to remove excess chocolate. Place cookie on same sheet, chocolate side down. Repeat with remaining cookies. Chill until chocolate sets, 30 minutes. Remove cookies from foil.

(Can be prepared 2 weeks ahead. Refrigerate in single layers in airtight containers. Let stand 10 minutes at room temperature before serving.).


Cool Oreo Mint Ice Cream

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

David’s favorite treat at Dairy Queen is the Mint Oreo Blizzard. And who doesn’t like those Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies? It’s really kind of surprising that it took us this long to make this Mint Oreo Ice Cream from the Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream & Dessert Book. As expected, it was delicious.

You know, from time to time, I toy with the idea of picking up another book of ice cream recipes, but I’ve just been so happy with this one, I don’t ever really see the need. The Ben & Jerry’s ones have been great every time.

mint oreo ice cream

Cool Oreo Mint Ice Cream
Adapted from Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream & Dessert Book

  • 12-15 coursely chopped Oreo cookies
  • 2 large or extra large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 cups of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 2 teaspoons peppermint extract

1. Whisk the eggs in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the sugar, a little at a time, then continue whisking until completely blended, about 1 minute more. Pour in the cream and milk and whisk to blend. Add the peppermint extract and blend again.

2. Transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker. Add while the mixer is on the low setting, then turn it up to high.

3. Once the ice cream has stiffened (about 2-3 minutes before it is done) add the chopped cookies and continue freezing until the ice cream is ready.

When it’s done in the ice cream machine, the ice cream will be the consistency of soft-serve. Freeze for at least two hours for a solid, scoopable ice cream.

Note: The recipe above makes a white, vanilla-looking ice cream. I added a few drops of green food coloring to make it look more minty. :)

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Patty Cake

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

I found this recipe on the Food Network website about a year or so ago. I made this for David last winter (maybe around his birthday?) and I knew that we’d be having this again someday. When I was trying to think up a dessert for our big family dinner last weekend, it came to mind again and I thought I’d give it a try. For a cake from scratch, I think it’s very forgiving. This was the first “from scratch” cake I ever made, and I didn’t have any problems at all. I did cheat a little bit when it comes to the garnish, but I don’t think anyone really noticed.

This cake is rich and dark. The texture is heavy like a brownie (not that that’s a bad thing!). If you like York peppermint patties or Thin Mint Girl Scout cookies, I promise, you will not be disappointed by this cake. It even looks like a giant Thin Mint cookie!

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Patty Cake

Serve with whipped cream, cocoa fudge sauce, and a drizzle of mint syrup.

Ingredients

Cake:

  • 14 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used Ghiradelli)
  • 16 tablespoons (8 ounces) butter
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cream
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) small-diced peppermint patty candies (I used York mini patties, cut into sixths).

Ganache Topping:

  • 1 cup cream
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Whipped cream, for serving

To make the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter a 9 1/2 to 10-inch springform pan, line the bottom with parchment paper, butter the paper, and flour the pan, tapping out the excess flour.

Melt the chocolate with the butter and cream in the top of a double boiler. Reserve.

In the bowl of a mixer with a whip, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until very thick and light (about 5 minutes). Add the melted chocolate mixture to the egg yolks and mix until just blended. Add the flour, salt, and vanilla and mix until combined, scraping the bowl once or twice. Transfer the batter to a large mixing bowl and stir in the Peppermint Pattie pieces. The mixture will be quite thick.

In a clean mixing bowl, with a clean whip, beat the egg whites to medium soft peaks. Lighten the batter by stirring in about one-third of the egg whites. Fold in the remaining whites and the place batter in the prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for approximately 45 to 50 minutes. The top of the cake will feel set and very fine hairline cracks will just start to form around the edges. Remove and cool in the pan on a rack.

To make the ganache topping: Heat the cream in a heavy bottomed saucepan to just under a boil. Add the chopped chocolate and, over very low heat, constantly stirring, cook the mixture until it is completely smooth. Strain through a fine sieve into a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until thickened and spreadable. This can take several hours. You can make the topping up to 3 days ahead, refrigerate it, and allow it to come to room temperature for several hours before using. You can also hasten the cooling process by placing the melted ganache over an ice bath and gently stirring it till thickened; however, the resulting texture may not be quite as smooth and creamy.

Place the cooled cake upside down on a cardboard cake circle or a service plate. Remove the sides and bottom of the springform pan. Remove the parchment liner. Using an offset spatula, decoratively spread the ganache over what is now the top of the cake, drawing the ganache all the way out to the edges of the cake. Using the offset spatula, level the edges to give the cake a finished look. Serve at room temperature with whipped cream and a drizzle of mint hot fudge sauce.

Note: The original recipe calls for making your own cocoa fudge sauce and mint syrup to drizzle over the cake when serving. I cheated both times. When I made it for David the first time, I used a store-bought mint chocolate flavored hot fudge, which worked well. This time, I made my own mint-flavored hot fudge by adding a teaspoon of peppermint extract to a jar of store-bought hot fudge. It was delicious, and hard to imagine that all the extra work of creating my own sauces would be worth it. Maybe I’ll try it someday though. Of course, homemade whipped cream is best, but I skipped that too. I didn’t want to make my guests wait around all day while I whipped cream for the cake. I think David got real whipped cream the first time though.

Holiday Peppermint Bark

Wednesday, December 24th, 2008

My secret santa at work bought me a whole great gift basket of baking supplies, as I mentioned before. The basket included, among other things, a Nestle Tollhouse cookbook. The book is full of cute, simple recipes. They’re easy to follow, include great pictures, and even better, the book is built like a kid’s board book, so you can simply wipe off any stray cookie ingredients that end up splattering the pages.

I am not the neatest cook in the world.

There were a number of recipes that looked tasty and worth a try, but the one that I sampled this time around was the Holiday Peppermint Bark. It was so simple that I’m almost afraid to disclose the recipe here. It looks fancy and tastes great, and those who have tried it will lose respect for me when they learn how simple it really was. But here goes.

Nestle’s Best Loved Recipes – Holiday Peppermint Bark
Makes about 1 pound of candy

  • 2 Cups (one 12 ounce package) White Chocolate Chips (Yup, I use Nestle Premier White Morsels)
  • 24 hard peppermint candies, unwrapped.
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Microwave morsels in medium-sized microwave-safe bowl on medium-high setting (70%) for 1 minute. Stir. Microwave at additional 10 to 15 second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted.
  3. Place peppermint candies in a heavy-duty Ziploc bag. Crush candies using rolling pin or other heavy object.  While holding a strainer over the melted chocolate, pour crushed candy into strainer. Shake to release all small candy pieces into the melted chocolate. Reserve larger pieces in the strainer. Stir chocolate-peppermint mixture.
  4. Spread mixture on prepared baking sheet. Spring with reserved candy pieces and press in lightly. Let stand for about 1 hour or until firm. Break into pieces.

I really enjoyed this recipe. It was ridiculously simple, and the results are really very tasty. Yes, I know that white chocolate is not chocolate, strictly speaking, but that’s okay. I thought the bark looked pretty impressive for how easy it was to make. I’m sure I’ll make this again.