Saturday, June 02, 2007

Chocolate Peppermint Trees


Here's another neat recipe for pressed cookies. I made these a few times many years ago. They are a lot of work, but so cute. They'd make a lovely gift or a show-stopping contribution to a cookie exchange.

CHOCOLATE-PEPPERMINT TREES

3 1/2 cups flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups butter or real margarine
1 cup sugar
3 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
4 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate, melted and cooled

Peppermint Filling:
8 ounces white confectionery coating (almond bark), cut up
2 drops green food coloring
1/4 tsp. peppermint extract

Sift together the flour and salt; set aside.

Cream together the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy, using medium speed of electric mixer. Add egg yolks and vanilla; beat well. Blend in melted chocolate.

Gradually stir sifted dry ingredients into chocolate mixture, mixing well.

Place tree plate in cookie press. Place half the dough in cookie press at one time. Press tree shapes about 1 inch apart on ungreased or parchment-lined baking sheets.

Bake cookies in preheated 375ยบ oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until set but not browned. Leave cookies on baking sheets for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

Prepare Peppermint Filling by melting the white confectionery coating according to package directions. (I would use the microwave instructions.) When melted, stir in food coloring and extract.

Sandwich 2 cookies together with Peppermint Filling in between. When all of the sandwich cookies are made, dip each sandwich into remaining peppermint filling (you may need to reheat it a bit for this step) so that half the cookie is coated with the pale green white chocolate. Place on wax paper until coating sets.

Yield: About 5 dozen sandwich cookies.

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