A Double Chocolate Shortbread Cookie Base, Layered with Whipped Mint Ganache & Drizzled with Dark Chocolate Glaze. A Cool & Refreshing Dessert that’s bursting with Fresh, Herbal Mint from your Garden!
What do you do when you have a crap-ton of mint in your garden?
(…these are the kind of questions that run through my head on any given day. Welcome to my dysfunction…)
I’ll tell ya what you do! You make Chocolate Mint Cookie Bars! …oh, holla…
Maybe you are the type who typically associates Mint + Chocolate with the more wintry season. I get it. It’s cool… and frosty… and it maybe makes you think of smiling snowmen in waistcoats singing in Bing Crosby’s voice while twirling around candy cane hitching posts half-buried under sparkling snow drifts. No? Just me? Ok, well, we’ve already acknowledged my dysfunction so lets not beat a dead horse.
It’s time to open our miiiiiiiiiiiinds…. I’m talking Mint + Chocolate in late summer, people! It makes perfect sense! Our herb gardens are overrun with the junk! And one can only drink so many mojitos before one starts getting funny looks, and gentle interventions from one’s loved ones.
Not that I speak from experience or anything.
These bars begin with my favorite chocolate cookie recipe, amped up with a few handfuls of mini chocolate chips. This recipe is great for roll-out cookies, but for this preparation, we are going to press a thick layer into a baking dish for a bar base. You are going to love the texture of this chocolatey cookie! It’s so dense, yet tender and crumbly. It’s a lot like a shortbread, but with a deep, intense chocolate flavor…
Next, a layer of whipped mint ganache is smoothed on top. Fresh mint leaves are steeped in heavy cream, imparting a cool, herbal note that’s like a roundhouse kick in the mouth. But in a good way.
Finally, a dark chocolate glaze gets drizzled on top, giving the bars the most gorgeous, shiny loveliness…
- For the Double Chocolate Shortbread:
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup [url href=”http://astore.amazon.com/yinmomyangmom-20/detail/B0027IM402″ target=”_blank”]unsweetened cocoa powder[/url]
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
- For the Whipped Mint Ganache:
- 6 ounces white chocolate, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- large bunch fresh mint
- For the Dark Chocolate Glaze
- 3 ounces semi- or bittersweet chocolate
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Beat the butter, shortening, vanilla, and salt in a mixer until creamy and well-combined.
- Mix in the sugar.
- Add the egg, and blend until incorporated.
- Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, add the [url href=”http://astore.amazon.com/yinmomyangmom-20/detail/B0027IM402″ target=”_blank”]cocoa[/url], flour, and cornstarch, and mix.
- Fold in the mini chocolate chips and press the dough into a lightly greased 9×9″ baking dish.
- Bake for 30 minutes; cool completely.
- Place the cream and the fresh mint in a small pot, and heat on medium, just until small bubbles begin to form around the edge.
- Turn the heat down to low, and keep warm (without boiling), for 10 minutes.
- Pour the cream and mint through a fine mesh strainer, over the chopped chocolate.
- Stir the mixture until smooth and refrigerate for two hours or overnight.
- When well-chilled and solid, place in the bowl of a mixer and whip until fluffy and smooth.
- Gently heat the chocolate and cream in a small pot, stirring, until smooth and well-combined.
- Stir in the corn syrup, pour into a glass measure, and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
- Run a thin knife around the edge of the Double Chocolate Shortbread, and carefully flip out onto a serving platter.
- Spread an even layer of Whipped Mint Ganache over the surface.
- Drizzle the Dark Chocolate Glaze on top, and refrigerate.
- Cut into bars and serve.
I kind of think of these bars almost like a twist on a Twix candy bar. Only, instead of just a plain cookie, we have double chocolate shortbread. And instead of caramel or peanut butter, we have whipped mint ganache. And instead of a milk chocolate coating, we have a dark chocolate glaze.
Ok, so, maybe they’re really nothing like a Twix at all.
Chocolate Mint Cookie Bars are a great way to celebrate the last of summer! Do what you can with all those gorgeous fresh herbs that are at their peak of freshness!
Are you a fan of Chocolate + Mint? Is it more of a summer thing for you, or do you associate it with winter? Quite frankly, I think these bars would be delicious at any time of the year… if you don’t have/don’t want to use fresh mint, it would work just great with a half teaspoon or so of mint extract. If you try it, I’d love to hear what you think!