Thin Mint Sandwich Cookies

I've always wanted to try my hand at making thin mint cookies.

Years ago, I tried one recipe that turned out pretty disastrous; the cookies melted into one another, a phenomenon that my roommate Jamie and I called "amoeba" cookies.  This recipe contains no amoebas!  Each cookie keeps its shape - that why I stuck them in the freezer before baking.  You don't want the dough getting too soft.

The other magical thing about this recipe?  Double thin mints.  Who can eat just one?!  I sandwiched two thin mints together, between a layer of minty chocolate.  YUM!  They have the same crispy, flaky texture of traditional thin mints.  But without the weird additives.

These cookies can also be adapted to be gluten-free.  Substitute a gluten-free baking mix for the cup of flour - it's very easy.

The first time I made these cookies, I actually thought that they could have been mintier.  Below, I adjusted the recipe to 2-3 teaspoons.  Taste the dough before you bake it to see if it's minty enough for you.  Remember, some of that mint flavor will bake out.

Thin Mint Sandwich Cookies
Adapted from Leite's Culinaria

1 c. flour*
1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder, like Guittard
1/2 tsp. baking powder, aluminum-free
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
3/4 c. organic cane sugar
6 T. organic non-hydrogenated shortening, like Spectrum
1 tsp. vanilla
2-3 tsp. mint extract
1 T. flax seed, ground
3 T. peppermint schnapps
2-3 T. unsweetened applesauce

1 c. dark chocolate, chopped, for coating
2-3 drops peppermint oil, for coating

*You can use any type of flour in this recipe, including a gluten-free baking mix.

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350°.  Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a small cup, combine the flax seed and schnapps.  Stir and set aside for 5-10 minutes.

In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.

In a larger mixing bowl, cream the shortening and sugar together.  Add the vanilla, mint, and flax/schnapps mixture and stir.  Add in the dry ingredients and stir.  If the dough is still a little loose, add in your applesauce until the dough clings to the beater.  It should look like the picture below.

Grab a chunk of dough and roll it out between two pieces of floured parchment paper, to about a 1/4 inch in thickness.  Use a small, circular cookie cutter to cut your pieces.  Place them on your cookie sheets; repeat until you fill up a tray.

Freeze the tray/cookies for 15 minutes before baking.  When they're ready to go, bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes.  It's difficult to tell when the cookies are done, because of their dark color.  If you have thinner cookies, like mine, only cook them for 10 minutes and let them cool on the tray. Repeat this process with all of the dough.

I melted my chocolate with a few drops of peppermint oil to add more flavor.  Using a spoon, I added a dollop of melted chocolate to the cookies and sandwiched them together.  Pop them in the freezer for 10 minutes to set the centers.  After, dunk them fully in chocolate, if you want to.  I left some "naked" and some covered :-)

Enjoy these sandwich cookies and their minty goodness!

Cheers,
-Aileen