Thursday, January 13, 2011

Peppermint Cookies

Cookies are a great little snack, and a lovely sweet finish for a meal. Even if you're watching the calories, a single cookie isn't bad - or at least it's a heck of a lot better than a giant slice of cake or a wedge of cheesecake.

Then again, that's assuming you're going to stop at one. Don't blame me if you keep nibbling

These would be fine for any season, but right now they're a great way to use up candy canes left over from Christmas. Or, if you don't want to deal with crushing candy canes, you can buy peppermint pieces. King Arthur Flour has a product called Peppermint Crunch, which is what I used.

If candy canes and Peppermint Crunch are out of season when you want to make these, you can use other peppermint candies instead.

Peppermint Cookies

2 cups (9 ounces) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temp
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 egg
crushed candy canes or Peppermint Crunch

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Whisk to combine.

In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar until it is light. (You can use an electric mixer or the paddle attachment on your stand mixer.) Add the vanilla, and keep beating until combined. Add the egg, and beat until blended.

Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix on low speed (or by hand) just until all the flour is incorporated.

Put some of your peppermint in a dish. Using a small scoop, make balls about 1 inch in diameter. Dip the top of the ball into the candy, then place the ball on your prepared cookie sheet and flatten it with the bottom of a glass, or any other handy flat implement. The glass I used had a design etched in the bottom of the glass for a little added interest.

If you want even more peppermint, you can sprinkle more on, as desired, and press them in a little more.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 12-15 minutes, or until the cookies are just slightly browned on the edges.

Move the cookies to a rack to cool.