We had awesome spring weather last weekend, and since we knew it would be short-lived (we’re having almost freezing temperatures again this week) we took full advantage of it by having a picnic lunch outside on Saturday with a few friends. Each one brought something to eat and we had a great time, it was nice being able to enjoy the weather if only for a couple of days. I’m pretty sure I have cabin fever, I just want winter to be over already!
So, what did we make for the occasion? Well, one of our staples (quiche) and for dessert, homemade Thin Mints. I’ve only tasted Thin Mints once or twice before and that was years ago, so I don’t really remember them that much, but I can tell you these cookies were delicious. Then again, I’m a big fan of mint+chocolate. I think traditional Thin Mints are crunchier though, but mine turned out chewier because I substituted confectioner’s sugar for brown sugar. You’ll notice the dough doesn’t have peppermint in it, just the chocolate coating. That’s enough to give the whole cookie the minty taste, I promise. And if you’re not a fan of Thin Mints, you can eat the cookies before you coat them – they taste similar to Oreos, without the cream! As a matter of fact I was thinking of using the dough as a base for homemade Oreos.
Homemade Thin MintsRecipe tweaked from The View From Great Island
- 2 sticks (225g) butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder (I use Valrhona)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 10 oz (280g) dark chocolate (I use Nestlé Desserts which has 50-60% cocoa)
- 1 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Cream butter and sugar. Add in the cocoa powder, vanilla and salt (be careful – cover up the bowl really well when you start mixing otherwise you’ll get cocoa all over your kitchen). Mix in the flour, careful not to over mix. Form the dough into a ball, roll it out, cover in plastic wrap and place it in the freezer for approximately 15 minutes. Cut the cookies using a cutter (I used a 1 inch square-ish one because the round cutters I had were too big). Place cookies on baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Remove cookies from oven and let them cool completely before coating them.
Prepare the coating right before you use it. Melt the chocolate carefully – do not overheat the chocolate, it’s best if it takes longer to melt – and add in the peppermint extract. One by one, drop a cookie, turn it over, pick it up with a fork, banging the fork against the bowl to remove excess coating. Allow the coating to harden by placing the dipped cookies on a cooling rack, placed on top of parchment paper (because coating will continue to drip a little).