I like to think I’m a pretty organized person—lists for this, lists for that, I’m usually on top of things. But sometimes I have a brain fart of seismic proportions. This morning I woke up and realized I’d completely forgotten to gift one key group of people: The lovely women who take care of Harry in his after-school program. No time for fancy rolled & decorated cookies, like the ones I made earlier in the month for my in-laws’ holiday party:
Instead, I turned to my handy cookie press. Ain’t no faster way to get a decorated, holiday-themed cookie. Seriously, if you’re prone to fartage of the brain, you need one of these. Last year I made Chocolate-Almond Spritz, but (of course) I wanted to try something different. The mint-chocolate combo is always a hit around here—I kid you not, Stephen bought EIGHT packages of mint M&Ms because they only sell them around the holidays—so I thought that might be worth a shot. And for extra fun, I dipped them in a mint-scented white chocolate glaze before adding sprinkles and decorating sugar. The whole project took me about two hours, beginning to end, and now I’ve got enough cookies for gifting at today’s pick-up and tomorrow’s Hanukkah party.
(If you’re in a super-rush, decorate the cookies before baking—they’ll be ready to gift in just over an hour!)
Makes 6-8 dozen, depending on which disks you use
2 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon mint extract
White Chocolate-Mint Glaze
1 cup best-quality white chocolate chips (I used Guittard, but Trader Joe’s is good too)
1 tablespoon neutral-flavored vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon mint extract
Assorted sugars, sprinkles, crushed candy canes, etc, for decorating
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Whisk together the flour, cocoa, and salt in a bowl—make sure the cocoa has no lumps. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, egg, vanilla, and mint extract until light and fluffy.
- Slowly add the flour mixture and beat just until combined.
- Fill your cookie press and fit it with your choice of disk. Press cookies onto cool ungreased cookie sheets—they don’t spread much so you can put them fairly close together. Bake for 5 minutes or until set. Allow them to sit on the cookie sheets for a minute or two, until firm enough to transfer to racks to cool completely.
- Make sure the cookie sheet is cool and clean before you start again—the dough needs to stick to the pan and it won’t work if it’s warm or greasy.
- Once cookies are completely cool, make the glaze: Melt together the white chocolate, oil, and mint extract, either in the microwave or over a double-boiler, stirring until it’s smooth. Transfer to a small, deep bowl.
- Place a wax paper-lined baking sheet nearby, and put your various decorations into small bowls. One by one, dunk the cookies into the chocolate, and then into the decoration. Be careful—depending on which disks you used, the cookies can be fairly delicate. Place on the wax paper to set completely before you try to pick them up. Refrigerate until chocolate is set.
Merry Christmas, everyone!