Cool Peppermint Brownies

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I feel to tell you that I wasn’t invited to my Senior Prom. It’s very likely the boys had seen the fluorescent turquoise number I’d plucked from a clearance rack, far in the back of a bridal wear shop, strung with fake pearls, and worn mercilessly on the arm of a sorry freshman to the Junior prom. So, my chances weren’t very good to begin with. But, still. I was sort of sad.

On the night of the dance, friend Jessica and I drove our lonely little selves an hour up to the Utah State Capitol building and decided–date or no date–we were going to try to sneak a peek at our fellow classmates. And, here let me say we were not there to spy or stalk. Rather, we were there to see. With fingers crossed, we were there to root for our pick for Senior Prom Queen. Several months before, blonde and bouncy choir-darling Camille had broken her neck, made a remarkable (if very long) recovery, and was now nominated for the penultimate high school title. How could we miss it?

In faded jeans and burger-stained tee-shirts, we tiptoed up the elegant marble steps, slowly opened the gold-gilded doors, pushed ourselves into the lobby and from there could see the room full swirling, smiling, sparkling couples. Ringlets bouncing. White gloves resting on tuxedoed shoulders. I remember sighing, then snickering quietly. Turning toward Jessica I was about to make a snarky comment, when….WHEN….I realized a shadow had fallen over the two of us. Our history teacher–chaperone for the night–was standing directly above our heads.

Excitedly he motioned toward another teacher. Then, another. He pointed rather anxiously our way, and we started slinking with horror toward the door.

“Girls! Stop!” Here were the summoned teachers, coming toward us very, very quickly. We moved back, they moved in. Grabbing our arms, they pulled Jess, then me. And, captured our worried bodies into warm, welcome hugs.

“Come in! Come in!” They welcomed us, “You must come dance.”

But we don’t have tickets. We don’t have dates. We don’t have dresses. We stammered.

The teachers shooed away our worries. One of them whisked the lace tablecloths off of the ornately decorated entryway tables, wrapping them around the both of us toga-style. “In you go!” they said, smiling.

Jess and I worked the dance floor as though we’d been invited guests. We hugged happy hello’s to our gussied up gal pals, filled ourselves with cream puffs and fruit punch, someone offered her date to me for a slow dance. Then, the music stopped. The microphone tapped. The room silenced. We huddled together on that floor full of friends, arms around each other, pinkies crossed, heads tipped together, waiting for the name of the new Queen to be called. We wept tears of joy when sweet Camille was crowned victorious. At some point, Jess and I snapped a photo, unraveled ourselves from our makeshift formals, and walked elbow-in-elbow out to the car. I remember smiling the whole way home.

It was ridiculously lovely, this evening that started as a glum reminder of my lonely high school status and ended with the thick happiness of camaraderie. It just goes to show–unexpected twists are always right around the corner, so long as you’re willing to open the door and dance.

Which brings me to this week’s unexpected twist. An overwhelming number of you voted for more quick & healthy recipes to be featured here on Cheeky Kitchen. Silly me. I’d always assumed I’d lose a lot of you if I halted my frenetic baking sessions and more fully represented my preferred diet.

So it is with great pleasure that you will be seeing a lot more around these parts. Or, should I say a lot less? In the coming weeks, look for a plethora of healthy, gorgeous recipe ideas arriving here regularly.

In the meantime, if you’re interested in seeing the sort of food I cook up regularly for my family, you’ll want to visit my Tastebudding posts. Simple, family-friendly fare with minimal perservatives and lots of nutrients. Recipes like my Goldilocks Morning Muffins, sugar-Free ChocoPops, Quick & Delish Foil Fish, Creamy Butternut & Orzo Pasta Bowls, and more! Are you shocked that cheeky ‘ol me is actually a healthy food fanatic? Well, like I said. Unexpected twists are always right around the corner.

Now, let’s dance.

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Cool Peppermint Brownies
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The first time I ever tried my hand at making mint brownies, I ventured into the baking aisle of our local grocery store and paide premium price for a bottle of “mint” extract. This would seem to make sense, wouldn’t it, since I was making a batch of green frosted brownies. Imagine my horror, then, after frosting a batch of mouthwatering goodies I piled a heap of them on my plate, forked right into them, and discovered a mouth full of toothpastey flavor. Ick! As it turns out, the preferred extract for a mint-and-brownie escapade is “peppermint extract.” That said, I’ve always wondered why we don’t offer a thick kick of blue to the frosting, rather than the standard green. Peppermint in my mind has always been a cool, bright blue, the color of ice and frost and imaginary crystals. I garnished my brownies with those divine little York Peppermint candies which have been popping up in grocery aisles. Their presence seemed to lend a great, glorious AMEN to this little batch of heaven.

You’ll Need: One prepared batch of my Chewy Chocolate Brownies
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Peppermint Buttercream & Chocolate Icing
1 stick butter
1 tsp. peppermint extract
16 oz. powdered sugar
2-4 T. milk
Blue Icing color
1 1/2 c. chocolate chips
4 T. butter, melted

In a large bowl, beat stick of butter, peppermint extract, powdered sugar, milk & icing color together until fluffy. Add just enough milk to make the frosting spreadable, but thick. Spread evenly atop cooled batch of brownies. In a small, microwave safe bowl, combine chocolate chips & butter. Microwave just until melted. Stir together, then spread immediately on top of frosting. If desired, sprinkle with York Peppermint candies and white nonpareils.

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Fondest, funniest {or most frightening} high school memory? Now that I’ve spilled one of mine, I’d love to hear yours. Or, share your ideas for my Chewy Chocolate Brownie Batter. Using it as a base for Ice Cream Sundaes? Topping it with cherries and cream cheese? Make It Work Mom has already whipped up a batch of her own. See if she was successful by clicking here.

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30 Responses to “Cool Peppermint Brownies”

  1. 1

    Memória on April 14, 2010 at 1:35 am Reply

    I love the color in these brownies!! YUM!

  2. 2

    Madame Sucre on April 14, 2010 at 3:10 am Reply

    never seen such colorful and fun brownies! thanks for sharing! :)

  3. 3

    cookies and cups on April 14, 2010 at 6:21 am Reply

    the blue is perfect! great thinking and how about a picture of you in your prom togas?! Great story!

  4. 4

    I Love Pretty Little Things on April 14, 2010 at 7:12 am Reply

    I LOVE your prom story! And, I love the teachers who pulled you in and made sure that you felt welcome! We need more loving, caring teachers like that in this big'ol world!
    You have to post the prom picture if you still have it! I really am curious!
    Joyce

  5. 5

    Amanda on April 14, 2010 at 7:43 am Reply

    Mint EVERYTHING is my favorite. I started giving my 2 1/2 and 1 year old tastes of mint since they were tiny-er:) My flavor preference must conquer my husbands of cardboard oatmeal and too much protein. The brownies as a sundae base is so good. We have also cut out brownie rounds and made brownie ice cream sandwiches with the edges sprinkled.

  6. 6

    Jamica on April 14, 2010 at 10:33 am Reply

    YES! Blue makes MUCH more sense! Love it.

    High school dance memory: split my homecoming dance dress right up the backside, mid-back to mid-thigh. Wish someone would have told me BEFORE I danced in front of the whole school. Oh well.

    I'm loving the changes you're making to your site!

  7. 7

    mom on April 14, 2010 at 10:58 am Reply

    I voted for healthier recipes because I learned just last week, that I'm allergic to tons of things I (and most people) eat all the time! eggs, milk, wheat, cinnamon…of all things! and other things that just make it a little more difficult to put variety in my diet! but….I'm committed to changing the way I eat. I already feel better and have lost 14 pounds in the past 10 days! yay! so…anything you can offer that contains chocolate (which I'm not allergic to…yay!) and no wheat, eggs, or milk would be wonderful! I know….that's extreme…just asking.

    I love your blog! It's always beautifully written and photographed. Keep up the wonderful work!

    thanks,
    debbie

  8. 8

    Christa on April 14, 2010 at 11:47 am Reply

    Along the lines of healthier recipes, do you have one for a homemade, stove-top macaroni and cheese? I don't have a clue beyond the blue box (preservatives and processed) or a complicated baked recipe that is natural, but decidedly not healthy. My kids love mac and cheese and if I could find a healthy recipe using whole wheat pasta and that was tasty and low-fat, I would be the bomb. Will you help me be the bomb?

    Sank you very much!

    Christa

  9. 9

    becheeky on April 14, 2010 at 12:41 pm Reply

    Christa-

    GREAT QUESTION! My kids are Mac & Cheese fiends, too. Isn't it incredible?!
    I've got JUST the thing for you! Follow this link http://tastebudding.com/recipes/166-mac-n-greens to find my Mac 'N Greens recipe. It's super quick, preservative free, PLUS you can for cook it up with whole wheat pasta and your kids will STILL love it.

  10. 10

    Mrs. Mordecai on April 14, 2010 at 2:20 pm Reply

    Ugh, once I borrowed some mint extract from the neighbors. I took one smell and decided not to use it. My mom always got peppermint, and I do now too. Great recipe! It looks fabulous. You had me at the peppermint patties. :)

  11. 11

    Shannon on April 14, 2010 at 2:37 pm Reply

    I love your prom story and mint brownies! (I haven't made yours, just a general love of things mint).
    Today has not gone as I had planned, but things will probably be OK. I thought I was leaving today to join my hubby in Rome for a few days. Uh, no. That flight is not until TOMORROW! So I had work plans screwed up, babysitting plans screwed and my mom made me feel even worse about it all.

  12. 12

    Maria on April 14, 2010 at 2:39 pm Reply

    Great story and I LOVE the brownies! Thanks for sharing!

  13. 13

    Florrie on April 14, 2010 at 2:57 pm Reply

    Oh my good heck…..These brownies just might be the death of my diet. (If you had asked me yesterday I would have said coconut m&m were the death of my diet, but I am a SUCKER for anything mint and chocolate.) I used to have Mere make me mint brownies instead of a birthday cake….I LOVE them that much! I can't wait to try these….they look totally worth the extra pounds on my hips….and butt….and thighs….

  14. 14

    Ashley on April 14, 2010 at 3:21 pm Reply

    great story! i too was not asked to my junior or senior proms, but i was DYING to go so i just asked the guys instead.

  15. 15

    becheeky on April 14, 2010 at 3:22 pm Reply

    Toga pictures, allergy-free food and more on it's way!

    Florrie- You. Me. Mint Brownies. Thunder thighs. Let's make it a date this summer. ;)

    Love you all!

  16. 16

    Aileen on April 14, 2010 at 5:44 pm Reply

    That is just about the coolest brownie I've ever seen. Your photography is fantastic–made me want to eat it right off my screen!

  17. 17

    WizzyTheStick on April 14, 2010 at 9:20 pm Reply

    Perfection brownies. They have been bookmarked!!!!!!

  18. 18

    Jas. on April 14, 2010 at 10:52 pm Reply

    drooling right now! Peppermint and chocolate yum! Plus those brownies would be easy to convert to Gluten free – I'll let you know when I do!

    Love your story too – I asked a crush of mine to the school ball (they aren't called Proms over here in Oz) and he took TWO WEEKS to come back to me to say yes, and even then he did so in such a way as to ask ME! My girlfriends were so peeved with him – but we had a great time and to this day are good friends. (no we didn't kiss at the ball, but we did a few yeas later ;))

    Also a note to Mom (Debbie) my blog http://www.glutenfreescallywag.com has some recipes that are perfect for you!

  19. 19

    heather on April 14, 2010 at 11:17 pm Reply

    Oh. my. GOODNESS. These look like HEAVEN!! I can't wait to make them! Thanks for sharing.

  20. 20

    Sue Sparks on April 15, 2010 at 6:33 pm Reply

    Your prom story should be made into a movie(or at least part of one)! Really!
    I LOVE the blue!

  21. 21

    Chablis on April 16, 2010 at 1:20 pm Reply

    Oh how I needed to hear that story today! Just a little pick-me-up, if you can keep cool, so can I!

    How creative…the turquoise frosting is so pretty!

  22. 22

    whisk-kid on April 16, 2010 at 9:29 pm Reply

    Aw, what a sweet memory. That was so nice to read!

    I love the colors on these brownies. They sound delicious, too!

  23. 23

    Katherine on April 17, 2010 at 11:36 am Reply

    Just found your blog, it's fantastic! I'll be following it from now on :)

  24. 24

    Camille on April 17, 2010 at 11:10 pm Reply

    What's funny is once I starting reading this post and saw it was another brownie recipe, immediately I was excited because I knew they would turn out! How fun to see a "shout-out" to my post! :) Now I HAVE to make these! :)

  25. 25

    Heather T - sloCooking on April 26, 2010 at 3:35 pm Reply

  26. 26

    Candiquik on April 28, 2010 at 1:41 pm Reply

    Awesome presentation. Looks delicious, hungry already. Can't wait to try, thanks for highlighting this recipe!

  27. 27

    marla {family fresh cooking} on June 20, 2010 at 7:03 am Reply

    Love that you went with blue instead of green with these brownies. Perfect for summer entertaining (or any time!!)

  28. Pingback: Handmade Holidays Part One | Moms Empowered

  29. 28

    Zoe on January 4, 2013 at 5:47 am Reply

    Hi may I ask where did you get the blue leaf plate from?
    Many thanks
    Xxx

  30. 29

    how to buy a homecoming dress on May 4, 2013 at 9:04 am Reply

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