It suddenly feels like finding a spare moment to do anything, much less post to this blog, is not to be had. Certainly not take pictures in daylight, as these photos can attest. In light of that, this will be short, but sweet. Very sweet, rich, chocolatey and full of minty goodness. Smooth and slightly airy with some lift from eggs.
Ironically I thought I would be sharing those Mocha Truffle cookies I told you about, but I took them to a party before I had a chance to snap any pictures, and I make them way too often to justify writing about them without pictures.
These Chocolate Chip & Peppermint Crunch Crackles are a fabulous holiday cookie (Epicurious thinks so too–I found them on their 25 Best Holiday Cookies list). They are extremely rich but somehow silky rather than chewy, without being underdone and raw tasting. My only complaint/thing I would change next time is that I would only sprinkle the finished cookies with powdered sugar; I would not bother with the crushed candy canes. As festive as it looks, it was a big pain to press into the baked cookie, and so on a whim I tried rolling the dough balls in candy cane and then baking–an even bigger mistake. The best cookies by far were the ones that just had a simple sprinkling of confectioners’ sugar. However, to compensate, I threw a handful of the Andes Peppermint baking chips (the red/white ones) into the dough, and that was very tasty.
Chocolate Chip & Peppermint Crunch Crackles
Adapted from Bon Appetit
8 oz semi or bitter sweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup finely crushed red-and-white-striped hard peppermint candies
6 1/2 T sugar
3 large eggs
2 t vanilla extract
1 t peppermint extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
1/2 cup (about 3 oz) semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup Andes peppermint baking chips
Coarsely crushed peppermints (optional–I would leave off)
Combine first 3 ingredients in heavy large saucepan. Stir over low heat until chocolates melt and mixture is smooth. Remove pan from heat. Mix in finely crushed mints and 6 1/2 tablespoons sugar. Cool mixture to lukewarm, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Whisk eggs into the chocolate mixture, 1 at a time, then whisk in vanilla extract and peppermint extract. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in small bowl to blend. Whisk flour mixture in to the chocolate mixture. Fold the chocolate chips and Andes baking chips into chocolate mixture. Cover batter and chill until firm enough to shape, at least 3 hours and up to 1 day.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat oven to 325 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Using 1 generous tablespoonful for each cookie, roll dough between moistened palms into 1 1/4-inch-diameter balls, then arrange on prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until puffed and cracked on top but still soft to touch in center, about 11 minutes. Let stand on sheets 5 minutes. Press coarsely crushed mints onto tops of cookies or sprinkle with powdered sugar. Transfer to racks; cool completely.
My theme of the moment is also stress, but I have no peppermint! 🙂 These look quite tasty and one of my favorite flavor combinations.
Yum. Chocolate, peppermint, that should help reduce stress a little bit!
noble pig says
Good combo, they look souffle-ish, I love that!
Oh, THANK YOU! I haven’t made chocolate peppermint cookies in years and I’m gonna make these this week!!! 🙂
Laura, ingredient alert! You have to add
8 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
to the very first line of the ingredients!!!
Believe me, it does not work without the 8 ounces of chocolate– I cried as I dumped the butter/unsweetened chocolate/ crushed peppermints down the drain!
But really, I do understand how this could be overlooked, so don’t worry.
Back to the kitchen… 🙂
ps- I crushed 45 mini candy canes in my mini food processor instead of the peppermint candies– it worked great. And since I bought a tub of 300 of them at Sam’s (why???) I have plenty for my next batch. 🙂
That’s is a very tiny, very tired oh.
I am so so so sorry Vicci. I fixed it. I swear I thought I started with a copied and pasted recipe to avoid such a problem in my current mental state, but I guess I missed the first line. 😮
Please don’t fret, Laura! 🙂 I only wish I hadn’t been making a double batch! I, too, cut-and-paste when copying recipes and it’s easy to “miss” a line.
Which reminds me, and I can’t figure out how to edit my comment above, but since I used 45 mini candy canes in a double batch of dough, only 20-22 would be good for a single recipe.
Okay, I did it over again (Christmas baking miracle, I found an extra box of unsweetened chocolate !) and it turned out fine. Making a double batch, I should have transferred the melted chocolate/peppermint mixture to the bowl of my KA mixer and used the paddle attachment to mix in the eggs, flour, etc. Oh well, next time!
I’ll let you know how the cookies turned out, they will be baked tomorrow. And how did it get to be 11:30pm? I went into the kitchen at 5!!!
Oddly, as I walked through Trader Joe’s today, I came upon these cookies. Of course I bought some – they are AWESOME. Jeremy doesn’t like mint, and Yael didn’t have much, but Josh and I could eat them all night long. Mmm.
They just integrated the peppermints into the cookie, rather than pressing in on top. Perhaps easier to execute?
Laura, these cookies are now a new favorite! They’re rather easy to put together (I’ve kept the dough in the refrigerator for a few days, only change there is to take it out ahead of time to soften just enough to scoop)and absolutely delicious. In fact, after that first double-batch I made another last night… Thanks again!
I love Chocolate and Peppermint at the Holidays. Oddly enough, I’m not thrilled with it the rest of the year, though!