Ok, so I know these aren’t squares but they really are supposed to be! Here’s the deal: I have lost my beautiful 8×8 pyrex glass pan which I love dearly. I’m not sure if I brought someone food in it or if it got lost between one of the four (thats right 4!) moves. ANYWAYS, for this recipe, you’re really supposed to use a 8×8 dish and cut out little squares….not take up your whole afternoon making teeny tiny bite-sized minis (although they are pretty darn cute if I do say so myself.)
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I’m certainly not Irish, but my husband is! (By the way, I did kiss him today because he was Irish…..no need to wear the t-shirt!) We don’t really celebrate this ‘holiday’ with the typical corned beef and cabbage, but I knew lots of you out there would be, so I just HAD to make something green, even if it this recipe is getting to you a little late!
[Speaking of recipes...... back in my single days, I had this wonderful friend and roommate who made these utterly delicious Irish soda bread biscuits that were seriously to die for. I was going to share that recipe with you today, EXCEPT......my friend LOST(!!!gasp!!!) the recipe! I couldn't believe it. On her behalf, I'm sorry. Maybe next year when she finds it again......tear.]
This recipe is a family favorite and is so simple to do! I grew up making and eating these. Don’t know where this recipe originated, but I copied it (TWICE) directly out of my mom’s recipe box before I moved away to college. Its like a nanaimo bar, except minty (and if you don’t know what a nanaimo bar is, go find yourself a canadian to explain it to you.) I love mint and chocolate together! Who am I kidding–I love anything and chocolate together. I am addicted to food after all. Anyways, these dessert bars are made up of three layers: a chocolaty cookie graham cracker type later, a minty creamy GREEN layer, and a chocolate layer. You just mix 1 layer up at a time letting it chill in the fridge in between. So simple and so good! Try them out for a belated St. Patrick’s Day treat!
PS–I haven’t met anyone who DIDN’T like these.
Yield: at least 16 servings
for the 1st layer
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 egg, beaten
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
Generously grease 8×8 square baking dish (like my beloved pyrex……rest in peace where ever you are little buddy). You could also line the dish with waxed paper. In large bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, coconut and nuts. Set aside. In small pot, boil butter, sugar and cocoa for 30 seconds while stirring. Temper egg into cocoa mixture by first pouring some of the hot mixture into the egg while stirring and then pouring that mixture into the rest of the pot while stirring. Once egg is tempered, pour entire contents of pot into dry ingredients. Stir until everything is combined and moist. Press firmly into prepared dish set in fridge and make 2nd layer.
for the 2nd layer:
1/4 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 cups powdered sugar
green food coloring
Whip all ingredients together until smooth. Pour onto first layer and smooth evenly. Refrigerate. Make 3rd layer.
for 3rd layer:
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons butter
Microwave chocolate with butter until completely melted and smooth. Spread over second layer evenly. Refrigerate until completely set. Cut into squares.
-I have found that it is best to wait at least 30 minutes in between making the 2nd and 3rd layer because it is very difficult to spread thick melted chocolate onto the minty cream layer when it hasn’t firmed up enough. The two layers seem to mix together instead of being two distinct layers.
-If you want things to go quickly, put your pan into the freezer in between layers so it hardens faster, although beware! The chocolate layer won’t cut too easily/prettily. If you’re going for looks, use a sharp knife and store in the fridge/on the counter until the chocolate has set.