Peppermint Bark Cookies
You know that chocolate peppermint bark that seems to be Everywhere around the winter holidays? This is an ode to that candy in cookie form. The cookie is the same as my Chocolate Mint Cookies (which are my take on Girl Scout Thin Mints). The difference here is the dark and white chocolate and crushed peppermint candy topping. Note that I call for peppermint oil, not extract. It is much more potent and has a very true peppermint flavor. You can order from LorAnne Oils, or find it at Whole Foods or some Michael’s craft stores.
Makes about 3 ½ dozen
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon peppermint oil
1 large egg, at room temperature
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, such as Valrhona Extra Bitter, finely chopped (not to exceed 64%)
4 ounces white chocolate, such as Valrhona Ivoire, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon mild vegetable oil, such as canola
3/4 cup crushed peppermint candies or candy canes (place unwrapped candy in a zippered top bag, seal bag with air removed, and whack with a rolling pin until crushed)
FOR COOKIES: Sift together the flour, cocoa, and salt; set aside. Beat butter in bowl of electric mixer fitted with flat paddle at medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Beat in vanilla extract and peppermint oil. Add sugar in 3 batches, beating on medium speed and scraping down after each addition. Beat in egg. Add dry mixture and beat just until blended. Place dough on parchment or waxed paper and form dough into a 2-inch diameter log; wrap up with paper and refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight. (Cookie log may be frozen up to a month. Double wrap in plastic wrap and foil before freezing. Defrost in refrigerator overnight before proceeding).
Position rack in middle of oven. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll cookie log back and forth to make sure log is a nice round shape. Cut cookies into 1/4-inch thick slices; set on sheet pan about 1-inch apart. Bake for about 12 minutes, rotating sheets once, until tops and edges are dry; the centers will yield slightly when pressed. Transfer to rack; cool. (The cookies are very dark so it is hard to assess doneness by visual cues. Do not overbake).
FOR TOPPING: Melt each chocolate separately in top of double boiler or microwave and stir until smooth. Stir 1/4-teaspoon vegetable oil into each melted chocolate. Let cool 5 minutes until slightly thickened then pour each chocolate into a parchment cone. Snip small opening in cone’s tip and drizzle white chocolate back and forth over cookies to create a thick zigzag pattern. Repeat with dark chocolate then quickly, while the chocolate is still wet, sprinkle generously with peppermint all over the cookies. Place baking sheets in refrigerator for 10 minutes or until glaze is set. Remove cookies from pans and store in an airtight container separated by sheets of parchment or waxed paper. Store in refrigerator until needed, up to 1 week. Serve at room temperature.