Friday, December 16, 2011

Candy Cane Cookies and Tuxedo Peppermint Bark

A little more than a week until Christmas! If you’re looking for a way to use candy canes, here are two traditional recipes. One is easy (the bark); the other takes a little more finesse (the cookies). But both are festive and yummy.

Peppermint Bark
1 bag bittersweet or dark chocolate chips (I like Ghirardelli)
1 bag white chocolate chips
12 mini candy canes, semi-crushed (1/3 cup or so)

1.) In the microwave, melt the chocolate chips in two separate bowls on 50% power.
2.) Line a 9”x13” cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2.) Spread the dark chocolate chips on the paper. Dollop and drizzle white chocolate on top and swirl with a knife to get the marbled effect.
3.) Sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies. Press the candy lightly into the chocolate with the back of a clean spoon.
4.) Refrigerate for 30 minutes to harden. Break apart into pieces. Store at room temp or refrigerate.

Candy Cane Cookies
Adapted from Christine’s Cuisine blog post.
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp peppermint extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
Wilton’s No Taste Red food coloring gel

1.) Blend butter, sugar, eggs and almond flavoring.
2.) In a separate bowl, combine flour and salt.
3.) Add the dry mix to the wet mix in batches until combined.
4.) Remove half of the dough from the bowl. Color the remaining dough with the red food coloring and flavor with peppermint extract.
5.) Place each half of dough in separate containers in the fridge. I form the dough into two balls and wrap in Saran Wrap. Let chill overnight if possible. The longer they chill, the easier the dough is to handle. You can also spoon the dough out in small teaspoons on two separate plates and cover with Saran Wrap so they’re ready to go the next day. This might also help the dough chill more quickly if you want to bake the cookies the same day.
6.) Using confectioner’s sugar to coat your work space, roll out a tsp-size white dough ball and one red into 4-inch snakes. (You’ll be surprised at how little dough it takes to get a 4-inch snake.) Pinch the ends together and roll the dough so that the two colors twist like a candy-cane pattern. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
7.) Unwrap and crush enough candy canes to equal about 1/2 cup. You want the candy pretty fine, almost like a sugar consistency with some slightly larger chunks for color. I used about two dozen mini candy canes to achieve the 1/2 cup. The boys had fun crushing them with a rolling pin in a quart-sized freezer bag. Set candy aside.
8.) Bake in a 375’ oven for six to eight minutes.
9.) Immediately remove the cookies from the oven and sprinkle with crushed candy. The candy will melt slightly and adhere to the cookie. Let cool before moving from pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies will be tender with a little candy crunch.


  1. Being a tester for both of these treats I can vouch they are wonderful. I am going to make the Bark (you know super easy treat) for my mailman and UPS guy (they work super hard here). Thanks girl. I just love all your ideas!! Now if only you cooked for me too...

  2. Mmmmmm they both look fantastic! I just love peppermint candy on anything. It really is the taste that reminds me of Christmas. I haven't made any peppermint bark yet this year but we did dip cinnamon bears and sprinkle candy cane on them! Yum.

  3. Love the idea of the cinnamon bears. Yumm. Glad you can use the recipe Maridith!

  4. Beautiful cookies and bark! So pretty, and yummy too, I bet. Crazy Sweet Tuesday, and would love for you to join sometime! Have a wonderful holiday!

  5. Delicious! I'll take both, please =o)


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