Intro

ciao_img_8299_blogRemember these little beauties I pointed you to? I finally made them.

I am such a sucker for conventional products that I realize can be easily made myself. A few examples to make my point… I make my own laundry soap and dishwashing detergent. And of course you all remember the marshmallows and the kettle corn. Pancakes, waffles, scones, soups, muffins, cakes and cookies do not usually appear in box, can, log or bag form before they hit our hungry mouths.

My sister-in-law is even more diligent about making many of her own food and household items. Her reasoning? Budget. Mine? I love the feeling of being self-sufficient. I am a do-er and whatever I can do for myself without having to depend on something or someone makes me feel strong, independent and like the women who appears in that classic illustration where she is showing off her less than lady-like biceps and telling the world she is in control and can do it herself.

As do many strong personality traits this can be a great asset but it can also be my downfall. Somehow I manage to bury myself in work, life, kids, house and carry all that weight on my shoulders refusing to ask for help. Or when I do it is often late in the process giving me plenty of time to feel guilty, tired, worn down and thinking that I am the only woman in the world who simply can not manage to do it all myself.  I know this isn’t a unique problem I have. More and more I am realizing that it is a woman thing. We want to do all and be all to everybody.

I don’t really know how I got on this tangent that seeks to uncover the truth that lies in most women. I simply wanted to tell you more about this fantastic recipe. Seriously, just the other day I was admiring the deliciousness that is Junior Mints. As Gabe and I sat in the movie theater watching “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” (great movie by the way), eating our chocolate covered mints that we risked our lives to smuggle in. I savored the harmony that is chocolate and mint. The creamy chocolate melts away on your tongue revealing a refreshing mint filled interior leaving your mouth feeling as if you have just brushed your teeth (except that you haven’t and you really should after you consume these because they are laden with sugar, your dentist should thank me). On this occasion we ate them straight from the box, however I enjoy them the most straight from the freezer.

On New Year’s Eve I created a dessert smorgasboard for a room full of lucky diners. Apple sorbet with a meringe cap, a banana chocolate soufflee with a warm chocolate sauce and a cookie plate filled with Macarons, honey-spiced nuts, caramels and Peppermint Patties.

Like most things you make from scratch these ones tasted better than their convential cousins. I used Valrhona 70% chocolate to enrobe the creamy interior creating a slightly less sweet confection. The tempered dark chocolate snapped flawlessly under the weight of my teeth giving way to the aroma of mint.

I am telling you, these little candies are a sure way of impressing your friends and neighbors. People are so fascinated by the thought of being able to make something that we have so grown accostumed to seeing in a shiny package at the grocery store.

I hope you will find it in your hearts to forgive me for I do not have an image to show you the beauty that little treats hold. Let this be more encouragement to make this recipe as they were so delicious there was not a single one left to photograph My sweet husband, Gabe, found an image. It may not be the prettiest but this was the only photo taken before they were devoured.

I know I showed you this recipe but I actually used an adapted version of one I found on epicurious.com.

Peppermint Patties

from epicurious.com

  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar (less than 1 pound), divided
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening (preferably trans-fat-free)
  • 10 ounces 70%-cacao bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (Valrhona, Guanaja)
  • Equipment: a 1-inch round cookie cutter; a digital instant-read thermometer

Filling:
Beat 2 1/4 cups confectioners sugar with corn syrup, water, peppermint extract, shortening, and salt using an electric mixer (with paddle attachment if using a stand mixer) at medium speed until just combined. Knead on a work surface dusted with remaining 1/4 cup confectioners sugar until smooth. Roll out between sheets of parchment paper on a large baking sheet into a 7- to 8-inch round (less than 1/4 inch thick). Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes. Remove top sheet of paper and sprinkle round with confectioners sugar. Replace top sheet, then flip round over and repeat sprinkling on other side.

Cut out as many rounds as possible with cutter, transferring to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze until firm, at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, gather scraps, reroll, and freeze, then cut out more rounds, freezing them.

Temper chocolate and coat filling: (Here is another great tutorial for tempering chocolate – Don’t be scared just try it).
Melt three fourths of chocolate in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Remove bowl from pan and add remaining chocolate, stirring until smooth. Cool until thermometer inserted at least 1/2 inch into chocolate registers 80°F.

Return water in pan to a boil and remove from heat. Set bowl with cooled chocolate over pan and reheat, stirring, until thermometer registers 88 to 91°F. Remove bowl from pan.

Balance 1 peppermint round on a fork and submerge in melted chocolate, letting excess drip off and scraping back of fork against rim of bowl if necessary, then return patty to sheet. Coat remaining rounds, rewarming chocolate to 88 to 91°F as necessary. Let patties stand until chocolate is set, about 1 hour.

Cooks’ note: Patties keep, layered between sheets of parchment in an airtight container, chilled, 1 month. Bring to room temperature before serving.

 

11 Responses to “Some thoughts on Peppermint Patties”

  1. Heather

    I am scared of the chocolate tempering, but I might be willing to move past it to make these lovelies for my mother’s birthday.

    Reply
  2. artisansweets

    Chery – Thanks for the well wishes. Let me assure that they taste even better than they look.
    Heather- I am still scared of tempering. That probably doesn’t reassure you but I think it is a healthy fear. You need to take great care when working with chocolate. Treat it with kindness and patience and it will reward you with the unmistakable crunch of a tempered chocolate shell. Let me know how they turn out.

    Reply
  3. Lynda

    These look amazing! Chocolate and mint is a heavenly combination, and they’d just have to be better homemade because you can use the quality of chocolate you want instead of the waxy stuff that is most American candies (not that they don’t ever get mouth space from me…I’m just sayin’)!

    Reply
  4. chocolate tart

    In the UK we have something very similar with violet or rose flavouring, called violet / rose creams. They are usually the reserve of grannies, but I adore them! But try as I might, I can’t find where to get these flavourings to put in the filling, so I will try this instead…

    Reply
  5. Janie

    I would like to know how you & your sister-in-law make your own laundry detergent. I am SO over spending so much money on this necessary evil. I have a son home from college who doesn’t know what 2x the strength means so he uses 4 x what is necessary. Thank you, thank you for any help. By the way- am going to make your mints and package them up for a ‘craft’ fair at my work. Do you think I could use fresh mint to make them or would this be overkill? Have made chocolate chip mint ice cream w/ fresh mint and is so incredibly fresh tasting thought it might be fun in the candy. Please share your thoughts.

    Reply
    • Ashley Rodriguez

      Janie – This is the recipe I use. Works like a charm. I buy the soap from Trader Joes – I actually use Peppermint Castile bar soap. Smells so good.

      Powdered Laundry Detergent

      2 cups Fels Naptha Soap (finely grated – you could also try the other bar soaps listed at the top)
      1 cup Washing Soda
      1 cup Borax

      * Mix well and store in an airtight plastic container.
      * Use 2 tablespoons per full load.

      I haven’t used fresh mint but I think it could be delicious. Let me know if you try it. I would love to add the recipe with the addition of fresh mint.

      Reply
  6. Ariane

    Can’t wait to try these! I love the idea of making homemade versions (peanut butter, marshmallows…) Thanks for the recipe!

    Reply

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