Peppermint Snowballs

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Introduction: Peppermint Snowballs

About: I love creating things, be it in the kitchen or the craft area. Handmade is better than store bought.

These little two-bite wonders are perfect for the holidays.  When the Christmas season starts, I pull out all the mint recipes I can think of -- this is one of my favorites. 

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Step 1: Ingredients

1.   One-and-one-fourth (1 1/4) cups of crushed (as close to powder form as you can get) of peppermints (about 45 peppermint candies like the Starlight Mints)

2.   One-and-one-third (1 1/3) cups of sugar, divided

3.  Three-fourths (3/4) of a cup of butter (a stick and a half)  [Alt version: Use one-half (1/2) a cup of butter and one-fourth (1/4) a cup of shortening.  This will produce rounder cookies.  Using all butter is healthier but causes the cookies the flatten a bit; I personally think using all butter also tastes better.]

4.  Two (2) eggs

5.  One (1) teaspoon peppermint extract

6.  Three-fourths (3/4) a teaspoon of vanilla extract

7.  Two and a half (2 1/2) cups of flour

8.  One-fourth (1/4) a teaspoon of salt

You'll also want and need assorted measuring cups and spoons, a hand or stand alone mixer, a spatula or mixing spoon, a food processor, a mixing bowl, a small bowl, a small plate, foil, and a baking sheet 

Step 2: Peppermint Crush

Unwrap the peppermints and put them in a resealable / ziploc bag.  I put the bag into another plastic bag and went at the mints with a hammer.  After they were crushed, I put them into my mini food processor to pulverize even more.

Toward the end add one-third (1/3) cup of sugar and mix in.  Pour into small bowl and set aside. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Step 3: Mix It Up

In mixing bowl, cream butter and one (1) cup sugar till fluffy.   Add eggs and extracts; beat until smooth.  Add dry ingredients to form soft dough.

[Alt. version: Cream shortening with the butter and sugar.]

Step 4: Baking

Roll the dough into one (1) inch-sized balls and roll in the peppermint mixture.  Place on an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake eight (8) minutes at 350 degrees.

IMPORTANT:  Place only six (6) cookies on the baking sheet at a time for best results.

Step 5: Final Dusting

IMMEDIATELY after the cookies come out of the oven, roll them in the peppermint mixture again (This is why it's important to only put six (6) cookies on a sheet.  You may not have enough time to roll more in the peppermint mixture before they cool off too much.)

This is where the small plate comes into play.  I find that when I roll the hot cookies in the mixture, it melts it all together into a large hunk.  So I cover a small plate with foil, place one cookie at a time on it, and use a spoon to cover the hot cookie with the peppermint mixture. 

Once covered with the second coating, place the cookie on the rack or foil to cool. 

ENJOY!

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