Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Cookie #76 - Thin Mints

The first time I heard about this knock-off Thin Mint recipe, I didn't believe it was actually good.  I must say, this version does come very close to the original.  The crisp cracker center mimics the chocolate cookie almost perfectly.  I didn't find them nearly as minty as I would have liked them, but that could easily be fixed with the addition of some more peppermint extract. 
Again, I made the mistake of using semisweet chocolate chips melted with shortening to coat these.  They didn't harden well, much like the Peanut Butter Patties (note the finger prints on the picture below).  I plan on making these again for Christmas and when I do, I'll use candy coating.  Wilton even makes a chocolate mint flavored coating eliminating the need for the peppermint extract. 
I've written the recipe out below using the measurements that I've found to be the same throughout the many different versions I've found across the net.  I used the same amount of peppermint listed below for 12-oz of semisweet chocolate and I didn't find it minty enough.  Most likely, it'll depend on your palate.  My suggestion is to add the 1/2 tsp then taste the chocolate before dipping. 

Thin Mints

1 lb bittersweet chocolate (or dark chocolate candy coating)
80 Ritz crackers
1/2 tsp peppermint extract*

Before starting, place a cookie sheet in the freezer.  Like I've mentioned before, putting the sheet in the freezer will help you achieve a nice smooth bottom.  You may also choose to put the Ritz crackers in the freezer as well to assist the chocolate setting smoothly.

In a double boiler, melt chocolate gently until smooth.  Watch the chocolate carefully so it doesn't scorch.  I cannot stress the importance of this enough.  Here are a few tips to ensure that doesn't happen:

If the water under your double boiler is boiling, you obviously increase the chance of your chocolate scorching.  Keep the water simmering, not boiling.
As you stir the chocolate be sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as you stir.  If you just lightly stir you can burn the chocolate on the bottom of the bowl and that will ruin the whole lot. 

Once the chocolate is melted, dip the crackers one by one using a fork.  Tap the fork lightly on the side of the bowl to ensure the chocolate coating is even over the cracker.  Place on the cold cookie sheet.  Once all the crackers are dipped, transfer to the fridge to set.


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