These are a little homemade Christmas gift for my Mom. She loves peppermint patties. We used to find the treats in our stockings on Christmas Day, and for me they just taste like the holidays. The candies are surprisingly easy to make. The only problem I’m having is not eating every last one before I get home!
Adapted from Gourmet
I thought the directions, as written, were fine. I did tweak the ingredients a tad, opting for pure coconut oil (there’s only a bit, so the flavor goes unnoticed), omitting the salt (otherwise you end up with salty bites since the filling is never heated), and doubling the peppermint extract. The resulting peppermint patties are gluten free, soy free and vegan.
Now, for a word on chocolate. Anyone with dietary restrictions, especially dairy and soy, will know how difficult it it to find chocolate that is safe to eat. I have two favorite brands. When I need a semi-sweet chocolate I go for Enjoy Life’s allergen-free semi-sweet chocolate chips. The folks at Enjoy Life are dedicated to serving those with food allergies and they have an extensive line of other goodies, too. When I need a dark chocolate I always buy Theo chocolate bars. I’m really impressed with this company. They are one of the few chocolate manufacturers to use real cocoa butter instead of soy lecithin, which just seems like a no brainer. I purchase their Origin Bars and the Jane Goodall 70% dark chocolate bars, as these are all dairy and soy free. I’m not sure if all of their chocolates are soy free and many do contain dairy, so be sure to read the labels closely!!
2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar (less than 1 pound), divided
1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon pure peppermint extract (I doubled, and would recommend doing the same)
1 tablespoon coconut oil or Spectrum organic, trans-fat-free vegetable shortening
10 ounces 70%-cacao bittersweet chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- Beat 2 1/4 cups confectioners sugar with corn syrup, water, peppermint extract, and coconut oil using an electric mixer (with paddle attachment if using a stand mixer) at medium speed until just combined. Taste a pinch of the filling. Does it need more peppermint? If so, add a few drops more to your liking.
- Knead dough on a work surface dusted with remaining 1/4 cup confectioners sugar until smooth, 5 minutes. Roll out between sheets of parchment paper on a large baking sheet until about 1/4 inch thick. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes. Remove top sheet of paper and sprinkle round with confectioners sugar. Replace top sheet, then flip round over and repeat sprinkling on other side.
- Cut out as many rounds as possible with 1″ round cookie cutter, transferring to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze until firm, at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, gather scraps, reroll, and freeze, then cut out more rounds, freezing them.
Temper Filling and Coat Chocolate:
- Melt three fourths of chocolate in a metal or glass bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Remove bowl from pan and add remaining chocolate, stirring until smooth. Cool until thermometer inserted at least 1/2 inch into chocolate registers 80°F (I didn’t us a thermometer, I just waited until the chocolate felt pretty warm to the touch)
- Return water in pan to a boil and remove from heat. Set bowl with cooled chocolate over pan and reheat, stirring, until thermometer registers 88 to 91°F (again, I just tested with my finger to see if it felt about 90 degrees). Remove bowl from pan.
- Balance 1 peppermint round on a fork and submerge in melted chocolate, letting excess drip off and scraping back of fork against rim of bowl if necessary, then return patty to sheet. Coat remaining rounds, rewarming chocolate to 88 to 91°F as necessary. Let patties stand until chocolate is set, about 1 hour.
***I’ve been storing my patties in a container with parchment paper between the layers in the freezer.