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Monday, December 14, 2009

Butter Mint Cookies (by Maren)

I am a huge fan of butter mints, so I was excited to try these. Unfortunately, I could only find "dessert mints" which are very similar to "butter mints" but not as creamy. Plus they are rainbow colored rather than just yellow. They performed fine in these cookies, although next time I might add a touch of mint extract as the mintiness was minimal. Also, I crushed the mints using a dish towel-draped hammer and a ziplock bag when I probably should have pulverized them to a powder in the mini food processor. I was hoping for more "stick" during the final step, so maybe mixing mints and powdered sugar would work better. Another option would be to enclose a whole mint in the center of the cookie, bake, then roll in mints/powdered sugar.
Butter Mint Cookies

Prep time: 25 minutes Oven: 325º
Bake: 15 minutes per batch (longer in my oven)

1 cup butter, softened (I used half butter, half Smart Balance)
1 cup butter mints crushed finely to yield 3/4 cup
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour

1. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on high speed for 30 seconds. Add 1/4 cup of the crushed mints and the powdered sugar. Beat until combined. Beat in the water and vanilla. Mix in the flour and cover and chill dough for up to 1 hour or until dough is easy to handle (10 minuted for me).

2. Preheat oven to 325ºF. Shape dough into small 1 inch balls and place them 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire rack.

3. Place remaining crushed mints in a plastic bag. Add warm cookies, a few at a time, shaking bag very gently to coat. Cool completely on wire rack. Makes about 36 cookies (I got 39). Store airtight at room temperature for 3 days or freeze up to 3 months.

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