Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Christmas baking is alway so fun around here. The sheer poundage of sugar I go through is staggering. Granted, half those experiments end out in the trash, but sugar is cheap! This dairy-free peppermint patty recipe has been a stand-by for a few years now, no expirimenting needed. The recipe is very fun to make, kind of like playing with peppermint playdough. Your hands smell wonderful afterwards!
If you really want to feel like a mad scientist, you can add a cool something called ‘invertase’ to the filling. Invertase is an enzyme that catalyzes the breakdown of sucrose (table sugar) into fructose and glucose. Honeybees use it to make honey. Confectioners use it to liquify solid sugar, like in chocolate covered cherries or in Junior Mints. You can make these candies without the invertase, they will be firm like a chilled York peppermint patty. If you’d like to try a softer, gooeyer mint like an After Eight, order up some invertase. I bought mine through Sugarcraft, a terribly addicting website.
- 2½ cups powdered sugar
- 2 T. corn syrup
- 1½ T. water
- 1-2 t. peppermint extract
- 1 T. coconut oil or shortening
- 1 t. invertase (totally optional, but fun)
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup safe chocolate chips ( I used Divvies)
- 1-2t. coconut oil or shortening
- Beat 2 cups powdered sugar with the rest of the ingredients in a mixer with the paddle attachment until smooth. Add the remaining ½ cup of powdered sugar slowly, mixing until smooth and relatively firm.
- Shape into a log, 1½ inches in diameter. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze. You can keep frozen for a long time.
- To finish the candy, slice the log into ¼ inch thick rounds, reshape as needed and refreeze on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet while you melt the chocolate.
- This is the cheaters method of 'tempering' chocolate. I am simply unable to temper chocolate. I don't even want to admit how many books, methods and thermometers I've used. I know my limitations. Melt the chocolate in the microwave slowly, 10-20 seconds at a time and mixing between zaps. When the chocolate is almost completely melted, add the coconut oil or shortening and stir until smooth. Add more oil if the chocolate seems too thick to dip. Don't add too much or the chocolate will be soft when finished at room temp. This isn't the worst thing in the world, it just makes for messy eating.
- Using a plastic fork with the middle tines snapped off, dip the frozen patties in chocolate, flipping once and shaking off the excess. Set them on waxed paper to harden. Sprinkle with crushed candy canes if you want.
- The patties can be stored in the refirgerator for a few weeks. If you used invertase, keep them at room temperature for a few days to allow the enzyme to work to liquify the solid sugar. The enzyme doesn't work well when cold. You can refrigerate them after the room temp resting period for longer storage.