Friday, March 23, 2012

Andes Mint Chocolate Cookies with Creamy Mint Filling

I'm a little late to the St. Patty's Day party...

Up until last weekend, there was such a craze for food that's minty.  Food that's green.  Food that's minty and green - there's been a lot of that going around lately.  I really like mint myself, especially in Mojitos and mint chocolate chip ice cream.  Nothing's better on a hot summer day than a big scoop of unnaturally green mint chocolate chip ice cream dripping down the side of a waffle cone.  But Jamie's not that crazy about mint, so I don't make minty desserts too often.

That Saturday was a warm sunny day, although with way too much wind, and we were headed to a bbq.  I made a bright green salad with fresh green beans, honey tangerines, shallot, almonds and dried cranberries, and a light honey tangerine viniagrette.

And for dessert, what could I do but get into the spirit of the day?  These chocolate cookies have Andes mints baked into the batter, and are filled with a pale green creamy mint frosting.  Although Jamie's not a mint person, he happily ate a couple of these and said he liked that they were soft, light and cakey, not too sweet or too minty.

Andes Mint Chocolate Cookies with Creamy Mint Filling
printable recipe

cookie dough:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, plus 2 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon mint or peppermint extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 package (28 pieces) Andes mints, chopped
mint filling:
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon mint or peppermint extract
  • 3-4 teaspoons skim milk
  • green gel food coloring

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Scrape the bowl down and beat in the eggs, egg whites, vanilla and mint extract until combined.  Mixture may appear curdled, but will smooth out when you add the flour.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.  With the mixer on low speed, add flour mixture by spoonfuls, mixing until moistened.  Add the buttermilk and mix until combined.  Stir in the chopped Andes mints.  Batter will be very thick.

If you can wait overnight to make the cookies, cover the bowl of cookie dough and refrigerate overnight to thoroughly chill the dough.  (If you don't want to wait, go ahead and drop spoonfuls of dough onto baking sheets, and freeze for 30 minutes prior to baking.)

After dough has been refrigerated overnight, preheat the oven to 350.  Drop chilled dough by rounded tablespoons 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat.  Bake for 9 minutes - they may appear underdone, but will finish setting up out of the oven.  Let cool and set for 3-4 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Repeat with remaining dough, keeping it refrigerated in between batches.

To make the mint cream filling, fit your stand mixer with the whisk attachment.  On low speed, combine the butter, powdered sugar, mint extract and milk, then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 4-5 minutes, adding a few drops of green food coloring to achieve desired shade of green.

Scoop filling into a plastic zip-lock bag and snip off the corner.  Pipe about 2-3 teaspoons of filling onto the underside of a cooled cookie, then place another cookie on top, pressing down to even out the filling.  Repeat with remaining cookies and filling.  Store in an airtight container.

Yields 4 dozen individual cookies / 2 dozen filled cookie sandwiches.
WW Points Plus Value:  3 points per individual cookie / 7 points per cookie sandwich with filling

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen