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Saturday, March 22, 2008

Peppermint Jo Jo Brownies

If only I didn't burn the chocolate the first time through, then realize I didn't have enough chocolate to redo it without going back out to the supermarket, than these would have been one of the easiest and best brownies ever. The peppermint sandwich cookies that are used in this recipe give the brownies a little extra something special. You could also used plain chocolate sandwich cookies and these brownies would still be top notch, yummy and fudgy. Everyone that has tried these brownies find them so special, this unusual twist to include the peppermint just are that little something that push these brownies to another level. The original recipe can be found here. I did not make many changes to this recipe, but you can look at both and decide for yourself which to follow. Both will turn out well.

Peppermint Jo Jo Brownies
1 cup butter softened
6 oz. unsweetened chocolate
3 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 1/2 cups broken peppermint oreo-type cookies*

*I used Peppermint Jo Jo's which are Trader Joes version of Oreo cookies, but you can use any brand that you have handy or you like.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and grease and foil a 9 by 13 inch brownie pan with either Pam or butter. The foil makes it so much easier to just lift the brownies right up out of the pan, and therefore easier to cut.

In a medium-large saucepan over low heat melt together butter and chocolate, stirring occasionally until fully melted and mixed together. DO NOT TAKE YOUR EYES OFF OF THE MIXTURE (it may burn :(.) Whisk in sugar, salt and vanilla while still over the low heat. Once combined turn off the heat. Whisk in eggs one at a time, waiting until each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Next, Stir in flour and cocoa powder until mixture is throughly combined. Stir in broken peppermint oreo cookies and pour batter into prepared pan. Then break an additional hand full of cookies (5 or 6)and distribute evenly and randomly on top of the batter. Make sure that the cookie pieces are not too big, or it will be more difficult to cut the brownies later.

Bake for about 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs, but not coated with batter, this will really depend on your oven, so I would start looking at 35 minutes, but mine really took closer to 45-50 minutes before fully cooked. Make sure you do not over bake or you will end up with dry not fudgy brownies.

Cool brownies in pan until just warm to touch. Lift brownies in the foil out of the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely before slicing, you could even put them in the refrigerator to really harden up for an hour before cutting.

Cut, serve, enjoy or freeze :)

The one thing you have to remember about freezing brownies opposed to cookies is that brownies take a longer time to defrost so they may need a few hours out of the freezer before serving. You don't want to people to bite into frozen brownies.

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