As a very little girl Momma would tell me about a magical 'exclusive' group of young women who would sell delicious cookies, camp together and earn beautiful badges they wore upon themselves like a beauty queen's sash. These badges, she'd note, were even more important and revered than those of a beauty queen, however, because good little girls earned them through mastering new skills and making friends. Whether it was Momma's own desire to relive a childhood dream of becoming a Girl Scout, or my own genuine enthusiasm, I eventually broke down and began pleading for her sign me up with this 'elite' group.
In the spirit of all things mint instantly tying into the festivities of St Patrick's Day, honoring the return of the Shamrock Shake, and inspired by my favorite Girl Scout cookie, here's perhaps one of the most delicious cupcake recipes I've ever dabbled with! And, while no Thin Mints are actually IN the recipe, you will surely want to pick up a box for comparison- don't forget you can now support your local troop and buy Girl Scout cookies online! Were you ever a Girl Scout or Troop Mom? Were you one of those who wish you had been?
What Daughter Says: I may not have been meant to sell them, but I can certainly EAT them!
Thin Mint Cupcakes
****Click here for the printable Thin Mint Cupcakes recipe.Ingredients:
3/4 C Dutch Process Cocoa
3/4 Hot Water
3 C All Purpose Flour
1 TSP Baking Powder
1 1/4 TSP Coarse Salt
3 Sticks Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter, Room Temperature
2 1/4 C Granulated Sugar
4 Large Eggs, Room Temperature
1 1/2 TBS Vanilla Extract
1 C Light Sour Cream, Room Temperature
10 OZ Bittersweet Baking Chocolate, Finely Chopped
1 1/8 C Heavy Whipping Cream
5 TBS Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter, Divided and Room Temperature
1/4 TSP Mint Extract or Creme De Menthe
5 Large Egg Whites
4 Sticks Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter, At Room Temperature
1 1/4 C Granulated Sugar (Confectioner's Fine- Not Powdered- Sugar Works Best)
3 TSP Mint Extract
Pinch of Salt
Preheat Oven to 350F
1. In a small bowl whisk together cocoa powder and hot water until smooth. In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, set aside.
2. In a double broiler combine butter and sugar over medium heat until smooth. Stir continuously and do not overheat or sugar crystals may form in batter when cooled. Remove from heat and add to the mixing bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment and beat on low for 4-5 minutes, or until mixture has considerably cooled. Add eggs, one at a time, scraping down bowl edges as needed. Mix in vanilla and cocoa mixture until incorporated. With the mixer on low speed add in the dry ingredients in 2 batches, alternating with sour cream, beating until just combined.
3. Pour the batter into prepared cupcake liners to about 3/4 full and bake 18-20 minutes, rotating pan halfway through. (Pro Tip: I like to pour my batter into a gallon sized bag and cut the tip off to pipe the batter evenly and mess free into the liners.) Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before transferring cupcakes to wire rack to cool completely.
4. To prepare ganache, while cupcakes cool, combine cream and chopped chocolate in a double broiler until smooth and even. Whisk in butter one piece at a time until evenly melted. Whisk in creme de menthe or mint extract and transfer mixture to a medium bowl and place in the freezer or fridge to chill.
5. To assemble the cupcakes cut a cone out of the center of each cupcake with a pairing knife, making 3 adjoining cuts into the center in the shape of a triangle. Remove the center portion, and set aside. Fill the cupcake cavities with chilled ganache and replace cores to reassemble cupcakes.
6. To make frosting, combine the egg whites, sugar, and salt in a double broiler, whisking continuously until mixture reaches 160F and the sugar has entirely dissolved. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Beat on Medium-High speed until stiff peaks have formed and the mixture has reached room temperature (about 8-10 minutes.) Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 TBS at a time. If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, don't worry it will reform, allow it to keep beating! Add in mint extract and desired food coloring and portion into a pastry bag to pipe on cooled cupcakes.
7. Garnish with semi-sweet chocolate shavings and a Thin Mint cookie and enjoy!