Mint Chocolate Brownies

This week I received an earnest email from a coworker, pleading for our Girl Scout cookie purchases to support his daughter’s first year as a Girl Scout. He spoke of how she’s so close to reaching her goal, and that my purchase will help boost her self-confidence and then, only then, can she succeed in life. Maybe I made that last part up, but if he brought her in to the office, I’ll bet she would have made a killing. Who can resist buying cookies from a little girl asking so sweetly? I certainly can’t, so I opted for a couple boxes of thin mints. I love that mint chocolate flavor, and when they’re frozen – yum.

The thin mints will arrive sometime next week, so in the mean time I made these mint chocolate brownies to have a little taste of what’s to come. I used a previous brownie recipe and added a teaspoon of peppermint extract. A little bit of that stuff certainly goes a long way. I think I would like a little more texture in these brownies, but since I usually shy away from adding nuts (per some preferences), next time I’ll add in some chocolate chunks to the mix.

Mint Chocolate Brownies
adapted from a previous recipe

7 ounces dark chocolate (this time I used Ghirardelli’s 72% cocoa)
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into quarters
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 cup flour

1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 350F degrees.
2. Spray mini muffin pan with nonstick vegetable cooking spray.
3. In microwave, melt chocolate and butter, stirring occasionally until mixture is smooth. Whisk in cocoa until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
4. Whisk together eggs, sugar, vanilla, peppermint, and salt in medium bowl until combined, about 15 seconds.
5. Whisk warm chocolate mixture into egg mixture; then stir in flour until just combined.
6. Spoon batter into muffin pan. Bake until slightly puffed and toothpick inserted in center comes out with a small amount of sticky crumbs clinging to it, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on wire rack to room temperature.

Matcha Brownie Bites

I had the pleasure of attending not just one, but two wedding celebrations for our friends Natasha and Ka-Loon the past two weekends. The official ceremony and reception was held last weekend in Bluemont, Virginia, and last night they had their Chinese (Fukienese) reception in NY. This brownie was inspired by their DC wedding since their wedding colors were green and brown, and the was complete with both matcha cupcakes and chocolate cupcakes made by Judy J. I was happy to hear from Nat’s dad that he’s read my blog (now I know who my Aussie readers are), so I wanted to make something for the family since I knew I’d see them again at the reception in Chinatown. I used the previous brownie bites recipe and added matcha for flavoring. The matcha taste is subtle, but I think it adds a little edge to the otherwise plain chocolate brownie.

Quick note and apology to the Holts: the batch I made were a tad undercooked, and I hadn’t realized it until later! Please if you haven’t eaten them, microwave them for 15-20 seconds before eating. I’ve updated the recipe to correct the mistake (decreased amount of eggs and increased bake time).

Matcha Brownie Bites
based on a previous recipe

1 cup butter
7 ounces dark chocolate (70% cacao)
1 cups sugar
3 eggs (4 for a cakier brownie)
a rounded Tb of flour
1 Tablespoon matcha
pinch of salt
2 teaspoons matcha, for dusting

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease and flour a mini muffin pan.
2. Melt together the butter with the chocolate. (If melting in the microwave, be sure to do it slowly, blending with a spoon between each pass.) Transfer into a medium mixing-bowl.
3. Add in the sugar, stir, and let cool a little.
4. Add in the eggs one by one, mixing well after each addition.
5. Sift together the flour, matcha, and salt. Add in the mixture, mix well.
6. Pour batter into muffin pan and bake for 13-15 minutes.
7. Cool completely and dust tops with matcha.
8. Store in a plastic container, refrigerate, and take it out about an hour before serving.