Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies
Happy St. Patrick's Day!
It's been quite some time since I've been reminded the history of St. Patrick's Day beyond the drinking and rivers of green. See I grew up going to a Catholic-parochial grade school with weekly morning masses and strict Irish nuns as teachers, which was quite an experience coming from a Buddhist household. I wasn't really sure why I'd have altars at home with different Buddhas and ancestors, then Crucifixes at school in a castle-like cathedral. But it taught me how to be open to differing religious views because they all really have the same underlying teaching: be good, do good. Religion is quite pleasant if you look at it that way.
These blog posts always end up with me rambling away on any given topic. As I was saying, I'd forgotten the meaning of St. Patrick's Day. So I did a little reminding research, which resulted in me learning that, one, St. Patrick was not Irish by blood and, two, a majority of his work was bringing Christianity, specifically Catholicism, to Ireland. The celebrations grew to recognize and honor Ireland as a country with a rich cultural background. And the drinking came from a tradition of "drowning the shamrock," which involved placing a shamrock at the bottom of a cup, filling it with whiskey, beer, or cider, then drinking the entirety in cheers to St. Patrick, Ireland, and everyone there.
Green became associated as part of a Ireland and St. Patrick's Day mostly because Ireland is called the "Emerald Isle" for it's lush green landscape. Which really is quite a difficult color to bake with without looking like it went horrible wrong. So I was pleasantly surprised when I walked through Target the other week and saw a bag of mint M&M's lining the shelves in two lovely mint green colors. Aside from wanting to eat them all straight out of the bag, I wasn't sure what I could do to make them a scrumptious snack to leave about at home and at work. But I knew I was craving chocolate chip cookies, so I went about and tried whipping together a mint chocolate chip cookie. It turned out quite nice actually! Though, I might have to put in more M&M's next time because the green got hidden underneath the cookie dough as it baked.
Just a note, though not reflected in my current photos, I adjusted the M&M portion in the recipe below to increase the green visibility and mint taste.
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cup all purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (9.6 ounce) bag of mint M&M's
Preheat the oven at 350°F.
In a medium bowl, beat together butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until fluffy and light in color.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
Combine the butter mixture into the flour mixture until well combined.
Fold in the mint M&Ms
Bake for 8-10 minutes. Enjoy!