Peppermint Oreo Brownies
Sorry to be just popping in briefly but pots and pans are a’flying here at chez shortlists. The lack of updating just means we’ve been indulging in favorites old and new, busy seeing family and friends, and, oh yeah, there are 30 people coming to dinner tonight. But in an interlude between frying meatballs and mixing dough, let me tell you about these brownies.
I’ve been making these brownies ever since Trader Joe’s started making holiday-themed oreos. Oh, wait. Excuse me. Joe-Joe’s. This means that when I was in Canada I would find excuses to make cross-border trips expressly for these babies, which always seem to be sold out during their 2-month , strictly seasonal appearance on shelves. Now that I’m in Australia, the price of plane tickets and jet lag (not to mention smuggling foodstuffs past Australia Customs and Border Protection Services) don’t allow for a quick peppermint oreo-fueled jaunt so I always take full advantage of such amazing American delights when I can.
Oh, but I must be brief: things are boiling over and the cat has perched herself – ever so gracefully – over the butter dish and my mother is manically cleaning up things I’ve strategically positioned around the kitchen.
So let’s cut to the chase. These brownies – straight out the freezer – are hands down my favorite late night snack. They are fresh minty and creamy chocolatey, chewy and substantial. Better yet? My better half doesn’t like the combination of mint and chocolate. Meaning more for me. And a little treat is important when cooking for 30. With a mother cleaning up and purposefully closing drawers around me.
If you make anything new this Thanksgiving or holiday season, make these. If you’re looking for a special treat for dinner, make these. If you can’t make it to a Trader Joe’s, Mint Oreos are on the shelves this time of year. Unless of course you’re in Australia. Or you’re coming to dinner tonight. In that case, I’d suggest you hold off…all this cheese grating, drawer slamming, caterwauling and, in my case, shortlisting, means that tonight, little furtive treats will not be necessary. And peppermint brownies as good as these deserve a little special moment just for them when you need a special little moment just for you.
PEPPERMINT OREO BROWNIE
Recipe adapted from Baking Bites. Makes about 36.
1 cup (220 g) butter
6 oz. (170 g) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2 cups sugar
½ tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs, room temperature
1⅔ cups all purpose flour
⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cups roughly chopped peppermint oreo-type cookies (approx. 18)(or anything else you want)
Preheat oven to 350° F/ 180° C. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, and grease lightly. Without the foil you won’t be able to take the brownies out of the pan.
In a medium-large saucepan over low heat, melt together butter and chocolate, stirring occasionally. Whisk in sugar, salt and vanilla, then turn off heat. Whisk in eggs one at a time, waiting until each is fully incorporated before adding the next.
Stir in flour and cocoa powder until mixture is uniform. Stir in peppermint oreo cookies and pour batter into prepared pan. Crush 3-4 additional cookies finely and sprinkle on top of batter, if desired.
Bake for about 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs, but not coated with batter.
Cool brownies in pan for about 20 minutes, then lift brownies in the foil out of the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely (trust me, don’t get impatient) before slicing.