Thursday, July 10, 2014

Mint and Chocolate Blondies

Screw what botanists may say.  Mint is a weed.

I swear, it's taking over faster than I can keep up.  Right now, it's threatening my chard.  I need to arm my chard with swords and shields (and regular pulls of the mint).  The consistent rain mixed with gorgeous sun is great for all of the garden, but the mint has really been taking advantage lately.  So I've needed to find new way to get rid of...I mean, to use it.

Mint and chocolate were just made to go together, but for some reason, the thought of throwing mint into a brownie didn't really appeal to me. Not that I don't like mint brownies! I do, but usually the mint is done through extract, carrying through the brownie or in a frosting.  But then I started thing about a blondie.  The sweet, buttery base with bits of mint and chocolate chunks mixed through?  Yeah, that's the ticket!



So, grab a bunch of mint and slice the leaves finely.  Make sure not to use the stems here...even thicker veins in the leaves get tough and a bit woody in the blondies as the moisture seems out of them.  tiny bits, about a quarter to a half cup of them.  I currently have 6 different types of mint growing around my home, but the one I used in this recipe is, appropriately, chocolate mint.   The plant is special to me, because it was the first thing we ever bought from Amy's Organics, when we first met Amy at a local Earth Fair several years ago.


Heat your oven to 350.

Melt a stick (8 Tablespoons) of butter, then stir in a cup of dark brown sugar until it dissolves. Let it cool a bit, the add to that an egg and a cup of flour.


Mix in the mint and a half cup of chocolate bits.  You can chop your own, or use chocolate chips.  I would go with at last a semi-sweet (a 70% cocoa is perfect!), but a milk chocolate would be far too sweet in these.  You want the bitterness of the chocolate to counteract that sweet blondie base.


Then grease a square baking pan and pour the mix in.


Pop it in the oven for about 20 - 25 minutes, just until the center sets.  You still want gooeyness in there.


Look at those tiny mines of deliciosity!


Let it cool, if you can, and then cut into small squares to serve, about 16 of them.


*Disclaimer: These smell very very delicious.  It is extremely hard to wait to try them.  I lost that battle, and totally burned the s*** out of my mouth.  Fight the urge!


The best way to enjoy these?  Slightly warm, with vanilla bean ice cream melting down over them.  Think one of those restaurant cookie skillets with ice cream, only with a kick of mint!