Hey there! Are you all enjoying the holidays? And did you get the gifts you were hoping to? I'm happy to say I got my greatest wish despite some bumps along the way, and Christmas was then wonderful =D. Not only did I receive some awesome kitchenware, cookbooks, and jewelry from P's family; but also thrilling news that my best friend N finally made it home and would be coming to visit on Wednesday. With another tarte tatin and lots of girl talk to look forward to, I couldn't ask for a better transition into the New Year.
Speaking of New Year's, may I recommend these Peppermint Cookies N' Cream Brownies for your next holiday party? Chopped up cookies are mixed into a fudgy brownie base to add richness and crunch. Meanwhile, the mint flavor is a fun nod to the weather outside. These babies are a bit extravagant, I have to say (especially compared to my go-to chewy cocoa brownies). Yet what better time to indulge a little than while you're joyfully gathered with those you love? Hope you enjoy these, and I'll see you all next year!
Peppermint Cookies N' Cream Brownies [Printable Recipe]
Adapted from Baking Bites
Makes 24 to 32 brownies (9 x 13-inch pan)
XIAOLU'S NOTES: While I love the peppermint flavor, these would still be delicious with regular Oreos. You could also play around with other chopped up cookies or even candy bars. For those who'd prefer a smaller batch, simply halve the recipe and bake in an 8-inch square pan. Also, I actually overbaked this batch by a few minutes, so if you follow the recipe your brownies should be even fudgier than my photo shows. If you prefer a sturdier slice, simply bake 5 minutes longer.
1 cup MINUS 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
6 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 1/2 cups roughly chopped peppermint Oreo-type cookies (about 15)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9 × 13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, and grease areas not covered by paper (if any) lightly.
In a medium-large saucepan over low heat, melt together butter and chocolate, stirring occasionally. Whisk in sugar and salt until thoroughly combined. Continue heating and stirring until the entire mixture is hot and smooths out somewhat but is not bubbling.
Remove from heat, and let cool slightly (about 5 minutes) to avoid cooking the eggs when added. Stir in vanilla, then add eggs one at a time, whisking immediately after each addition and mixing until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next egg. Whisk in flour and cocoa powder thoroughly until mixture is uniform.
Switch to a spatula or large spoon and fold in 2 cups of chopped cookies. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread out evenly with spatula. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup of cookie pieces on top of batter.
Bake for about 35 to 40 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 paper out of the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.