Thursday, December 20, 2012

Andes Mint Chocolate Covered Cookies

Recently at work there was a Christmas Cookie Bake-off.  I really wanted to compete since I wasn’t able to compete in the Halloween Bake-off.  (It was on a Wednesday, and my weekdays leave NO TIME for baking!)  I wanted to make something festive & delicious.  My first thought went to the Double Ginger Crackles in my blog because I LOVE them (duh, ginger).  But, ginger can be a bit polarizing.  What if one of the judges hated ginger?  My next flavor thought was peppermint, so I turned to a cookie I bookmarked last year, these Peppermint Bark Cookies from Annie’s Eats.  So that’s what I made and entered.  Or I guess you could say Elliott & I made, because the boy did not want to be put down!  Good thing I have my trusty Ergo carrier!  Sadly I didn’t get a photo, because I started the cookies mid-Sunday (and they require 2 hours of chilling in the fridge), I finished them Sunday night, and packaged them up for the contest as soon as they completely cooled.  My mornings don’t have a moment of free time between getting myself & Elliott ready, as well as walking the dog, so I wasn’t able to snap a photo.  I was pretty busy at work, so I didn’t snap a photo there either.  Not even an iPhone photo!  You can see beautiful photos of the completed cookies on Annie’s post.  This is the closest you’ll get to a photo of them from me:


{Elliott & I in cookie-making action.  I am wearing him in my Ergo carrier in the “hip carry” position.}

Now, you’re probably wondering why I just went on & on about Peppermint Bark cookies, when the title of this post is clearly ANDES MINT.  Well you see, while I was making the dough for the cookie base, I got the idea to do two versions.  One peppermint bark, the other as Andes mint.  A local cupcake shop I love and adore, Cupcake Collection, has been tweeting about their special Andes Mint cupcake, and I’d been craving Andes Mint for weeks because of them!  I knew if it worked so well in their cupcake, it would work well for these cookies too.  I really wished I’d had the opportunity to make both versions for the bake-off.  I just simply ran out of time & energy.


As it would be, the Peppermint Bark Cookies & I did not win the bake-off.  Bummer…  The back of my mind kept wondering if I had of made & entered the Andes mint version, would I have won?  Of course, we’ll never know.  But I did want to satisfy my curiosity as to how the Andes Mint cookie would taste!  So, here they are.  A soft, brownie-like cookie, with melted Ghiradelli chocolate, and chopped Andes Mints.  I debated whether or not to chop the Andes Mint myself, or use the baking bits.  I bought both, but as you can see used the baking bits.  Now I wished I’d chopped them myself.  I think these baking bits are great when baked into a cookie, but as you can see they look a bit dry on top.  The freshly opened & chopped Andes Mint would have been more appealing to the eye.  But nonetheless, these cookies were SUPERB!  I even think they edged out the Peppermint version.  But that may be because I’m more of a mint fan over peppermint.


Andes Mint Chocolate Covered Cookies

Yield: About 3 dozen


For the cookies:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
12 tbsp. (6 oz.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. creme de menthe extract or mint extract
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

To finish:
8-10 oz. semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
Andes mint candies roughly chopped, or Andes Mint baking candies


To make the cookies, combine the flour, cocoa powder and salt in a small bowl; whisk to blend and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Blend in the egg, mint extract, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix just until incorporated and no streaks remain. Form the dough into 2 discs, wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, 1-2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 325˚ F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. On a lightly floured work surface, roll one disc of dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out 3-inch rounds with a cookie cutter and place cut outs on the prepared baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes, just until set. Let cool on the baking sheet about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining disc. (This dough is easier to work with if it remains cold. As it warms up it gets much stickier.)

Line baking sheets with wax or parchment paper. Place the semisweet chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a few inches of simmering water. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is melted and smooth.

Use an offset spatula to spread a layer of chocolate on top of each cookie and sprinkle immediately with chopped Andes Mint pieces before the chocolate sets. Transfer to the refrigerator to chill just until set, about 15 minutes. Store in an airtight container.

inspired by/adapted from Annie's Eats

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