I Love Chocolate

by Stephanie Zonis


Peppermint Brownies

32 brownies


A layer of mint-flavored, fudgy, chewy, ultra-chocolatey brownie is topped with chocolate-covered thin mints, then smothered in a dark chocolate glaze. Any questions? If you wish, you can fold a cup of chopped walnuts into the brownie batter when the flour has been partially incorporated; if you do so, you might want to substitute a cup of very finely chopped, toasted, cooled walnuts for the white chocolate shavings sprinkled on top of the glaze, and press them in lightly. These will freeze, but if they're frozen for any length of time the peppermint flavor will lessen. I like to serve the brownies in foil baking cups, which dresses them up a bit. These are great for parties or bake sales or almost any other occasion.

The only mints I'll use for these are called "After Eights", which are widely available in supermarkets. They are expensive, but they are the best widely-available chocolate-covered thin mints I know. There are 30 mints to an 8.75 ounce box; you'll need two boxes for this recipe. You'll have some mints left over, but they won't last long.


14 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into thin pats
3 squares (3 ounces) unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2 squares (2 ounces) semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup sifted unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder
3 cups granulated sugar
6 eggs, graded "large"
2 Tbsp. peppermint schnapps
Pinch salt
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
Optional: 1 cup chopped walnuts

40 dark chocolate-covered thin mints,
   preferably After Eights, unwrapped

8 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
Few grains salt
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. heavy cream

Shaved or grated white chocolate


For Brownies:
Line a 13 by 9 by 2 inch pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, shiny side up (or use a doubled length of regular-weight foil). with vegetable shortening, lightly grease the bottom only. Set aside. Adjust rack to center of oven; preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In medium heatproof bowl, combine butter and chopped chocolates. Place over simmering water on low heat (water should not touch bottom of bowl); stir often until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and hot water. Add cocoa powder; whisk briskly until only a few small lumps remain. Cool chocolate mixture at least 15 minutes.

In large bowl, combine sugar, eggs, schnapps, and salt. with large spoon, beat until well-mixed and foamy, about 1 minute. Add chocolate mixture, which may still be slightly warm, and stir to blend. Add flour; stir in just until incorporated. Fold in optional nuts. Turn batter into prepared pan and spread level.

Bake in preheated oven 30 to 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center emerges with only a few moist crumbs still clinging to it. Do not overbake! While brownies bake, make sure unwrapped mints are at hand, and have ready a cookie sheet larger than the brownie pan.

As soon as brownies test done, remove to cooling rack. Immediately place mints all over top surface (I make 5 rows of 8 mints). Don't worry if some of the mints overlap a bit, just get them onto the surface of the hot brownies. Cover brownie pan with cookie sheet. Let stand 3 minutes. Remove cookie sheet. with back of large spoon, spread melted mints evenly over surface of brownies (don't worry about any uneven color, as the brownies will be glazed). Cool completely at room temperature.

For Glaze:
Place chopped chocolate and salt in medium heatproof bowl. Heat cream in small saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until very hot. Pour about one-third of hot cream into chocolate. Allow to stand for a minute or two, then stir or whisk gently until smooth. Gradually whisk in remaining hot cream. (If necessary, place bowl over simmering water on low heat--water should not touch bottom of bowl--and stir often just until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and hot water.) Allow Glaze to stand 30 minutes at room temperature, until cooled and thickened slightly. Pour slowly over cooled brownies and spread evenly. Sprinkle on white chocolate shavings (or chopped walnuts). Chill until set before cutting into bars.

To cut, use a large, sharp, heavy knife. Rinse and dry blade frequently. Store cut brownies airtight in refrigerator.


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This page created January 2000