My mate Natalie hosted a Sunday potluck lunch, for which I attempted to make peppermint patties. I knew there'd be heaps of food and I imagined these as small bites of sweetness we could still enjoy nibbling on after a big meal.
They didn't work out quite as planned. Even though I'd tagged the recipe as vegan, it wasn't at all - still, it was easy enough to replace butter and cream with a small can of coconut milk. This rendered the peppermint fondant much runnier than it should have been. There was no way I could roll, refrigerate and slice it into neat little discs. Instead I pulled out my cupcake pan and layered these out as soft-centred chocolates.
So far so good! They looked cute in green mint-coded papers, with a couple of sprinkles on top. And on first bite they were a heavenly contrast of crackling bittersweet chocolate and oozing sweet peppermint. But they were hefty, a bit too much to take on after burgers and mac'n'cheese (and just an eensy second helping of mac'n'cheese). We all blamed them for our mid-afternoon lethargy.
And so I've named these would-be peppermint patties, peppermint patsies.
(adapted from a recipe at Oh! Nuts,
which I found via she cooks, she gardens)
300-400g dark chocolate
3 cups icing sugar
4 tablespoons coconut milk
2 teaspoons peppermint essence
pinch of salt
Place cupcake papers in a cupcake baking tin.
Gently melt half of the chocolate. Drop a scant tablespoon of liquid chocolate into each cupcake paper. Use a spoon to push the chocolate up the sides of the paper. Make sure the base is covered well with chocolate. Refrigerate the tray for 15 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the icing sugar and coconut milk until smooth. Stir in the peppermint essence and salt. When the chocolate is set firm, drop 2 teaspoons of the peppermint mixture into the centre of each chocolate. Refrigerate for a further 15-30 minutes.
Gently melt the remainder of the chocolate. Spoon a scant tablespoon of chocolate onto each peppermint layer and smooth it out across the top. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.