Sunday, December 1, 2013

Mint Chocolate Cookies

Happy belated Thanksgiving everyone!  I hope that your long holiday weekend was enjoyable and filled with family, friends, football, shopping, good times, and of course, delicious food!  Jeff and I actually took it easy for a change, and with family located in different states around the country, we decided to pack our bags and go on a relaxing mini-vacation to Atlanta.  Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love my family and we happily would have traveled further, but we were just out in Las Vegas in October, and we're going to be traveling up to Michigan for Christmas.

With all that being said, I can't believe that the Christmas season is "officially" upon us.  This is, without a doubt, my favorite time of year, and what better way to get in the mood of the holiday, than by sharing a scrumptious cookie recipe.  I know that this post is kind of ironic, at least for me, because I've been continuing to eat healthy.  Small confession though.....I may have splurged one day in Atlanta, but only because we went to a Johnny Rockets (I had never been before), and seeing that we were there, I felt the need to try a dark chocolate and peanut butter milkshake.  Oh...My....Word....was it ever absolutely DELICIOUS and everything I was hoping for!  It was definitely worth the splurge, however, going from pretty much no sugar intake whatsoever immediately to a milkshake, might not have been the best idea.  I say this mostly because I wasn't feeling so well later that evening. 

I'm proud to say that the milkshake though was my only splurge over the holiday weekend, and now I'm back on track.  I have a new workout routine all set to go for the month of December and I might even join a Dietbet.  As you know, I love challenges and the workout calendar that I created for this month starts off looking pretty easy, but as the month continues on, it becomes slightly more intense.  If you want to join me, but think it might get too intense, feel free to break the exercises up into smaller sets, and don't worry about completing them all at once, the only thing that matters is that they get done.  Helpful Suggestion: you could always complete some of the crunches and squats in the morning and then do the rest in the afternoon.  Looking back at my numbers and workout routine from November, I'd have to say that I had a pretty successful month.  Even though I couldn't workout with the intensity that I wanted, due to my stress fracture, I still managed to lose around 8 lbs.  So keep in mind that anything is possible if you set your mind to it!

So, for those of you up for the challenge, here's the new calendar....Feel free to keep me posted on how you're doing.

Now, to contradict my workout routine, here's today's recipe.  I feel that these mint chocolate cookies would be a great addition to any cookie swap, or holiday party.  The mint flavoring found within each tasty morsel is perfect for the Christmas season, and who can say that they're not a fan of Andes Mints?  Plus, the mint green coloring that's added to these cookies is definitely pleasing to the eyes.  They will be gone before you know it!

Mint Chocolate Cookies
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2 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 ½ cup sugar
1 egg
1 ½ tsp. mint extract
15 drops or more, green food coloring
1 1/2 boxes of Andes Mints, broken into pieces (It helps if they are refrigerated)
Optional: ½ cup of Chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat and set aside.

In a medium bowl combine, and whisk together, the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

Now, in the bowl of an electric mixer, set on high and fit with a whisk attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in the egg and mint extract, making sure to scrape down the side of the bowl as needed.  Now, set the mixer to a lower speed and add in the dry ingredients.  Once the dough begins to form, add in the green food coloring and continue to mix until you are happy with the coloring.  Saving the best for last….translation…. it’s now time to fold in the Andes mints.  However, make sure that you save some of the mint pieces to place on top of the cookies before placing them in the oven. 

Roll a small amount of dough, about a tablespoon or so, in your hands and place onto the prepared baking sheet.  Flatten the dough a little by pressing down with your palm and then add a few Andes Mint pieces on top. 

Place the baking sheet in the oven and allow to cook for 8-10 minutes.  (FYI: The cookies will look puffy and might not look done, but they will drop down when cooling.)

When ready, remove the baking sheet from the oven and place it on a wire rack for 5 minutes.  Once the cookies have cooled slightly, remove them from the pan and allow them to cool completely.  These cookies are definitely delicious with a glass of milk!  What a great holiday treat!

Source: Slightly Adapted from Crafty Corner


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