Friday, December 14, 2012

Peppermint Oreo Balls

Peppermint and Chocolate are so in love. And I am in love with them. You are, too.

You don't think so? What about those Peppermint Mocha Lattes you've been pounding back? Or that mint hot chocolate that you can't get enough of? And how many boxes of Thin Mints do you buy each year from those cute little Girl Scouts?

Do you know what happens when you take Oreos (America's favorite cookie obviously), candy canes, and cream cheese and dip them all in chocolate?

Answer: An amazing explosion of chocolatey, minty, rich and creamy goodness!

Alternative Answer: A surprisingly simply but decadent holiday dessert!

Alternative to the Alternative Answer: Peppermint Oreo Balls!

Traditionally, Oreo Balls consist of mashed up Oreos mixed together with cream cheese then dipped in chocolate (milk, white, dark, semi-sweet, whatever you fancy!). They are absolutely addictive.

In an effort to be festive I imagined the aforementioned treats with an extra, pepperminty surprise. And since my cat keeps ruining Christmas by knocking all the candy canes off the Christmas tree I thought...yes. I will remove the candy canes from the tree and I will put them in the Oreo balls. Double win.

The process is super easy. Blend the oreos and candy canes together in a small food processor.

Then, using your best tools (your hands!), mash together the cookie and candy cane crumbs with softened cream cheese until well combined.

Form the mixture into 2-inch balls (I use a heaping teaspoon) and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze and wait, trying your best to be patient.

Using a double boiler, we will melt together a little bit of milk and a whole bunch of semi-sweet chocolate.

The frozen balls go for a swim in the chocolate pool. Then they are topped with tiny pieces of candy cane and returned to the freezer.

After the chocolate has set, you will simply transfer the balls to the refridgerator for storage until they are ready to serve!

If you get invited to a last minute holiday party, these are a super quick and delicious dessert. Nearly everyone at the party will devour them! They are a bit like a truffle and a cookie combined. And better still - there is no baking required!
Here's what you need:

2 rows of Oreos (from a regular sized package...I should have counted but I just kind of went for it)
6 candy canes, plus 1 for garnish
1 8-oz. block cream cheese, softened
8 oz. semi-sweet chocolate (can use chips or bark)
3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon corn syrup (optional)
Dash of Sea Salt

Here's what you do:

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In the bowl of a food processor, add one of the candy canes and pulse about 5 times until course crumbs form. Remove and set aside.

Add the remaining candy canes and the cookies into the food processor. Pulse until the mixture is well combined and crumbly. I gave the mixture a taste at this point to make sure the peppermint really came through. If it is too much chocolate and not enough peppermint, add another candy cane and pulse.

In a medium bowl, add the softened cream cheese and the crumbs; use your hands and mix until thoroughly combined.

Using a teaspoon (not a measuring spoon), scoop out the mixture and roll into 2 inch balls. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Keep the balls about an inch or so apart. You don't have to worry about the balls flattening out, but you want enough space so that when you coat them in choclate, they don't stick to each other.

Place the baking sheet in the freezer for 30 minutes.

In the mean time, fit a heat-proof mixing bowl on top of a small pot. Add about an inch of water to the pot and heat slowly over low heat.

Add the semi-sweet chocolate and the milk to the bowl and place over the pot. This is creating a double boiler.

Do not let the water start boiling, you simply want it to steam.

Continually stir the chocolate and the milk to prevent scorching. When most of the chocolate has started to melt, remove from the heat and stir vigorously until smooth.

Add in the vanilla extract, sea salt and corn syrup if using, for shine. Allow chocolate to cool for about 2 minutes.

Toss each Oreo ball and cover completely in the chocolate. Remove using a fork. Before returning to the baking sheet, gently tap the fork on the side of the bowl 3 to 4 times to smooth out the chocolate coating. Top with a few crumbles of the extra candy canes.

Repeat until all the balls are coated and garnished, then return to the freezer for another hour.

Once the chocolate is set, store in an air tight container (separating layers with a sheet of parchment) in the fridge for up to 5 days. When serving, keep in a cool area (away from ovens, hot food, etc. to prevent melting!)

No comments:

Post a Comment