Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Andes Mint Brownie Bites

Want to impress the multitudes at whatever Christmas function you'll be attending? Bring these little guys right here!  Not only are they gorgeous to look at, but they taste even better than they look, and they are pretty much a guilt-free Christmas treat!!!  Any way you look at it, these satisfying little bites are winners!!  Disclaimer: when baking for the holidays, you may find some ingredients in my recipes that I typically wouldn't use...some of the items may have trace amounts of dairy or sugar in them...if this freaks you out, read the labels of the products before you buy them, and see if you can find a better alternative (and if you do...let me know!!!)

The brownie:

Preheat oven to 350

Buy a package of Pamela's Products brand Gluten-free Chocolate Brownie Mix
-prepare the "pamela's irresistible brownies" recipe, with these substitutions:

1/3 c. applesauce (we're cutting out a LOT of fat by taking away the oil...yet we're not forfeiting any of the flavor!)
1 "egg" (1 eggs worth of egg replacer...this is saving you a total of 9g of fat!)
1/4 c. water (the recipe calls for this already, but I just didn't want there to be any confusion)
2/3 c. Andes mints
1/2 t. peppermint extract

-Put in a greased 8x8, and bake according to the instructions!

-Once cooled, put in the freezer, until completely frozen (this will make them a lot easier to cut, dip, or roll into balls.

-Note:  I actually under-baked mine a little, because I like the texture of the hard chocolate on the outside, but the gooey brownie on the insides...great contrast!

-Once brownies are frozen, take them out, and cut them into even, bite-sized squares.  (The brownies should still be soft enough to roll some of them into balls at this point, if you wanted a little variety to the look.)

-While you're cutting, empty a bag of Enjoy Life chocolate chips into a microwave safe container, and microwave according to the instructions on the back of the package (for the bark recipe listed)...I do add the oil it calls for.

-Once melted, dip brownies one by one, with a fork, and scrap the excess chocolate off the bottom several times.  Place on wax paper (or aluminum foil) and top with whatever sprinkles (or crushed candy cane) you have on hand!

-When you get down to having not enough chocolate to dip the brownies in, I add a touch more oil to it, and with a spoon, drizzle (or fling) the chocolate over the bites that have already been dipped.  This makes them look just a little fancier...and now, you're not wasting the very last bits of chocolate!

-Note:  you'll probably have to keep reheating the chocolate for 10 second intervals, throughout the dipping process.  If the chocolate gets too thick, the coating on the bites is just a little too thick...we're going for perfection here, so let's do this right!!

-Once the chocolate has set, you can either serve right away, put in the fridge in an air tight container until you need them, or freeze them until you're ready for them...either way, this recipe is AMAZING, and you're going need to make a double batch!

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