Jan 1, 2012

Peppermint patty whoopie pies

If you asked me what my favorite thing in the world to eat was, I'd tell you chocolate. It's so delicious and so versatile. How so,you ask? Well I've had steaks at restaurants before where they've made a savory cocoa sauce to accompany the steak....pure genius.

I've never been a candy girl, someone into sugary sweets. I usually wipe all the frosting off cakes and could care less about 100% sugar treats.

Chocolate is so wonderful and I'm always trying to do different desserts with it. For my Christmas party, I decided to do whoopie pies. Never had one? It's a classic New England treat; chocolate cakes turned sandwich with a frosting center.

I have made these before, the classic version; which involves fluff (another New England thing). "Fluff" or Fluffinutter is a super-sweet marshmallow "soup" in a plastic tub that's traditionally used as the frosting in the sandwich. I however dislike it's super-sweet taste by itself. It's just too much for my taste.

Looking to elevate my frosting to that of my "whoopie pie chocolate dreams", I decided to experiment with something a little more upscale.

This turned out to be a bad idea.  I should have known better than to use white chocolate.  Every time I use it in making a frosting, it ends badly. I don't know why I have issues with frostings, but I do.  Last time (when I did a cream cheese white chocolate raspberry frosting) it looked and tasted great; however, It kept melting upon me pulling it out and frosting my cake.  I had to do a row of frosting decoration and throw it in the fridge.  Then a row of frosting decoration and put it in the fridge again. (It was summer, so the melty-ness was partially due to me making a frosting I shouldn't have in the summer)

This time I decided to make a whipped cream, white chocolate peppermint frosting.  Now doesn't that sound amazing?  
Here's what I did:
  • I took a container of heavy whipping cream (2 cups) and heated in in a double boiler.  
  • Then I took 9 oz of white chocolate chips and added it into the heavy whipping cream.  
  • I mixed with a whisk until it was fully incorporated into the whipping cream.  
  • I placed it in the fridge until it was cool.  
  • I pulled it out and put it into the mixer with the whisk attachment and tried whipping it up.  Nothing.  
  • I added a tsp. of coconut oil to thicken it.  Nothing.  
  • I then added cream of tartar to try thickening it.  Nothing.
It was a soupy consistintcy on the bottom of the bowl and a gunky "curdled milk look" at the top.  I have no idea why the whipping cream wouldn't whip and sank to the bottom and the white chocolate looked like curdled milk.  My husband tried it and said it tasted delicious (and it did), but it looked awful.  If I had more time, I would have tried to fix it.  Next time I would probably try to heat the frosting over the stove again and whip on there to try to make the lumps go away and remix.

My backup plan was to use the Duncan Hines whipped vanilla frosting (tall container) and I added peppermint oil to it (3 drops) and mixed.  Then I frosted my sandwiches and coated the edges with crushed pieces of peppermint.  I wouldn't do the crushed peppermint again.  It looks pretty, but I hate the super sugary taste of the peppermint sticks and dislike the crunch texture with the soft fluffy whoopie pies.

I used the basic Martha Stewart Whoopie Pie Recipe from her cookie book.  My only recommendation is if you follow this recipe, make sure you fully mix the batter.  My first batch came out un-whoopie-pie-like because I followed her "mix until just incorporated" rules afraid that an over-mixed batter would ruin the batch as it does in some baking applications.  Don't be afraid to mix it more.  Make sure you have no cocoa powder that's left in powdery clumps.  If you have to "pop" them into the batter.

The Verdict on my second batch of Whoopie Pies; pure bliss (however I still wanted my white chocolate peppermint frosting!).  
It tasted like a giant peppermint patty!  

I now have to control myself from eating the entire batch. I decided to make these as the dessert for my Christmas party.  You could also bag these and tie them up with a pretty ribbon and give them out as favors to your guests.


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