Holiday Cookie Countdown: Peppermint Truffle Brownies

peppermint truffle brownies_small

Um, hello? Is this thing on?

That’s kind of how I feel right now. I’m not the kind of blogger who regularly checks to see how many people are tuning in (or, er, clicking in?), but I accidentally clicked on my Google analytics page yesterday when I was trying to set up a gmail account — yes, I’m that person who still has a hotmail address — and I almost threw up when I saw that like thousands of people have been visiting this site every day in December.

I flipped the screen to my laptop down and gulped a glass of wine. Or four. When I started sharing recipes I had no idea that more than 20 people would read them. And I remember checking not so long ago when like 43 people visited each day. And I thought…Awesome! I don’t even know 43 people!

So, if you’re one of those people who comes back regularly — thank you so much. Thank you from the bottom of my chocolate-loving heart. I don’t have huge aspirations of becoming famous like The Pioneer Woman, but I really love to cook and bake and I love that a few thousand others can share that with me.

Which reminds me…y’all should comment more often! How else will I know you’re here?

Anyhoo, have you recovered from your pumpkin pie coma? If not, I’ve definitely got the remedy…

Peppermint.

In fact, I’m not sure how life gets much better than these. Peppermint. Truffle. BROWNIES.

Beautiful to look at? Check. Even better to eat? Check. check. These are rich, rich, rich fudgy brownies with a delicious ganache poured right on top. Crushed peppermints adorn the ganache — perfect for your holiday platter.

I found this recipe via Pinterest from Let’s Dish Recipes and didn’t need to change a thing. Perfection!

A couple notes: I found the crushed mints get soggy if you put them on right away. I’d wait ’til the last minute to sprinkle them over the top of the ganache and lightly press them in. Also, this only makes a 9×9 pan, but you can get 36 bars out of it. Cut ‘em small…these puppies are rich.

Holiday Cookie Countdown: Peppermint Truffle Brownies

Holiday Cookie Countdown: Peppermint Truffle Brownies

Ingredients

12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, divided

1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 1/4 cups sugar

3 large eggs

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1/3 cup crushed peppermint candies

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x9-inch baking pan with foil, leaving overhang "handles". Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine 6 ounces (half the bag if you're using a typical 12-ounce size) of chocolate chips and butter in medium metal bowl. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water and stir until chocolate and butter are melted and smooth. Alternately, melt chocolate and butter in a glass bowl in the microwave at 50% power, stirring every minute until melted and smooth. Cool chocolate mixture until lukewarm, 5 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt in large bowl to blend. Whisk in chocolate mixture. Stir in flour. Transfer batter to prepared baking pan. Bake brownies until tester inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 30 minutes. Transfer pan to cooling rack and let brownies cool completely.

Bring cream to simmer in small saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat. Add remaining 6 ounces chocolate to hot cream and let stand 5 minutes to soften, then whisk until melted and smooth. Pour chocolate ganache over cooled brownies (still in pan) and spread to cover completely. Let stand at cool room temperature until topping is set, about 4 hours. Sprinkle with crushed candies.

Using foil as aid, lift brownie sheet from pan. Fold down foil edges. Using large sharp knife, cut brownie sheet into 25 squares, wiping knife with hot moist cloth after each cut. (Don't skip this or the brownies will be a mess to cut.) Arrange brownies on platter and serve.

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