And just like that, our little Australian holiday is over and we’re back in the real world. Booo! This week is not even close to over, but boy has it been hard. On top of the cold weather (goodbye 25°C+ Sydney weather) and being back at work, I’m also struggling with a nasty case of jet lag. There’s a lot of fuzziness going on in my head, and I’m absolutely shattered by 9 every night. Great start to 2015, right?! So worth it though, because we had an incredible time in Australia.
Now, I know that January is the month of making resolutions about healthy eating and all that other stuff. To be honest, I really don’t care for making resolutions like that, and to prove it to you, today I’m bringing you a delectable, delicious, not healthy in any way, chocolate biscuit recipe! I banish all diets for the months of January through to December. Come join me!
The biscuit I’m going to introduce you to today is one of my absolute favourites, and happens to be post number two in my Australian Biscuit Series (see part 1 here, part 3 here and part 4 here). It’s the kind of biscuit that grows on you the older you get. Children don’t tend to appreciate it’s flavours in the same way that adults do. It often gets overlooked for it’s more well-known brother, the Tim Tam, but I might go a far as saying that I think it’s better than the Tim Tam. So, are you ready to meet this special little biscuit? World, meet Mint Slice. Mint Slice, World.
Now that the pleasantries are out of the way, we can discuss the awesomeness that is the Mint Slice biscuit. Think crunchy chocolate biscuit, topped with soft mint peppermint icing, then dipped entirely in dark chocolate. Did I hear you say perfection? Don’t deny it, I heard it. This biscuit really is one of the greatest things about living in Australia. I know everyone thinks beaches and cuddly koalas and pretty scenery and sunshine when they think of Australia, but they really should be thinking about the Mint Slice over everything else. We need to make the Mint Slice a global thing, and I’m going to start by giving you the recipe to make your own biscuits at home.
There are some recipes that I’ve tried for other popular store-bought biscuits that use butter and while they might end up tasting nice, they don’t taste one iota like the original. These Mint Slice biscuits are made with vegetable oil instead of butter to create a crunchier biscuit, more like a true Mint Slice.
Mint Slice Biscuits
Prep Time: 20 minutes + approx 1 hour for dough to chill and 6-10 hours for chocolate coating to set completely
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
⅔ cup caster sugar
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup milk
1⅛ cup plain flour (1 cup + 2 tbsp)
½ cup cocoa powder
1 tbsp cornflour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1¼ cups icing sugar
¾ tsp peppermint extract
1½-2 tbsp milk
400g good quality dark chocolate, broken into pieces
- In a large bowl, combine caster sugar, vegetable oil and milk and mix well so that sugar isn’t settled on the bottom. Sift plain flour, cocoa powder, cornflour, baking powder and salt over the liquid mixture and use a wooden spoon to mix to form a thick dough.
- Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for a couple of minutes until it has come together fully. Divide dough in two and form each half into a disc. Wrap each disc in cling film and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- As dough is chilling, preheat oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 and line two large baking trays with baking paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll one half of the dough out to a thickness of 4mm and use a 6cm round cookie cutter to cut out cookies and transfer to baking trays. Repeat with other half of the dough. Bake for approx. 15 minutes, until biscuits are firm to touch, but not burnt around the edges. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- While biscuits are cooling, make the peppermint icing. Sift icing sugar into a medium bowl and add peppermint essence. Add the milk, half a tablespoon at a time, mixing well after each addition, until the icing forms a thick paste. You don’t want it runny. When biscuits are fully cooled, spread icing with a knife or spatula onto the top of each one in a thin layer (about 2-3mm thick). Allow icing to set for 15 minutes.
- When icing has set, melt chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals or on the stove in a heatproof bowl over simmering water. Place some newspaper or baking paper underneath a wire cooling rack to catch any excess chocolate. Take one biscuit and submerge it completely in melted chocolate. I used two forks to keep my hands from getting too dirty. Remove biscuit and allow excess chocolate to drip off, then place on wire racks to set. Allow to set for at least 6 hours or overnight if possible.