This year we’re spending Christmas with my American in-laws, and in the name of embracing new traditions I’m getting pretty into the concept of the cookie party: literally, a party where people get together to eat copious amount of sweet baked goods (something I can definitely get behind!). An American friend shared her amazing and oh-so-simple festive peppermint brownie recipe with me recently, and they’ve been a big hit.
You can use whichever brownie recipe you prefer (my personal favourite is Nigella Lawson’s – lots of melted chocolate, no chocolate syrup) to make the base, but I’ll share the proper American one here.
For the brownie layer:
– 1 cup flour
– 1 cup sugar
– 1/2 cup butter
– 4 eggs
– 1 1/2 cup chocolate syrup (or melted chocolate)
– 1/2 cup of chocolate drops
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Soften the butter, then beat well with the sugar. Sift in the flour, and then mix in the eggs, one by one. Add the chocolate syrup and the chocolate drops, and then spread in a greased baking tin (approx. 13×9) and bake for around 30 mins (until the mixture feels springy to touch).
For the peppermint layer:
– 1/2 cup butter, softened
– 2 cups confectioner sugar/icing sugar
– 1 tablespoon water
– 1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract
Sift the sugar into the softened butter, then beat in the water and the peppermint extract. Taste, and if you’d prefer it to be even more minty, go ahead and add a little dash more!
For the chocolate layer:
– 6 tablespoons butter
– 1 cup of chocolate for melting
Melt the butter and the chocolate together in a heatproof bowl over simmering water, stir well, and leave to cool fully, but not set.
When you have made all three parts, simply spread an even layer of the peppermint buttercream over the brownie (making sure the brownie has completely cooled – you don’t want the buttercream to melt!), then spread an even layer of the melted chocolate mixture over that. As a final fun finishing touch, crush up some peppermint candy cane (I found using a mug to do this gently in a high-sided bowl worked better than some more violent methods!) and sprinkle this over the top of the whole thing before letting the chocolate set and cutting it up into small squares. It’s pretty rich, so a little goes a long way.
Enjoy, and have a very happy Christmas next week! xo