dessert

Mini Mint Pie Jars

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Mini Mint Pie Jars: These mint pie jars are super easy to make and require no oven or stove! Starting with an Oreo cookie crust and featuring a cool and refreshing mint filling with just the right amount of crunch, these pies are sure to be the highlight of summer!

Mint Pie Jars | Sempre Dolce

“Oh what a beautiful mornin’,
Oh what a beautiful day,
I’ve got a beautiful feeling,
Everything’s going my way.”

Do you know that song? It’s from Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! and as I am currently listening to it, I feel like if there was a song to fit these Mint Pies, this would be it. (Yes, food can be paired with music…) Somehow I can just see myself in summer, sitting on a large porch in my rocking chair; lazily rocking back and forth, eating a mini pie and watching the world go round.

Unfortunately, that’s not what I’m doing. But, I do (Update: Did…) at least have these little pie jars within grabbing reach, and that’s good enough for me.

Mint Pie Jars | Sempre Dolce

I’m not a big fan of mini desserts the size of your thumb, but I do love ones that are the cutest serving size. What do I mean by that? I mean small enough to be super adorable, but still large enough to be satisfying and just the right amount of food. (I just can’t get over the idea of grabbing a jar and poof! a personal pie – or whatever dessert it might hold.)

Mini Mint Pies in Jars | Sempre Dolce

These Mini Mint Pie Jars are perfect for summer in that there is no oven required, no stove, and only the brief use of a mixer, which you could nix altogether if you use store bought whipped cream or extra frozen whipped topping.

And… mint. Could you get more refreshing??

Mini Mint Pie Jars | Sempre Dolce

If you’ve ever made or eaten “dirt” – the way too simple, but still yummy mixture of chocolate pudding, Cool Whip, and Oreos – this is very similar in taste; almost like a minty version. But of course, these are pies, so we also have crust and whipped cream for toppers.

These pies are just the thing for any summer gathering, as not only are they super simple to make and easy to serve, but can also be made ahead of time. Winner, winner, pie for dinner! < Sorry, that was bad…

Mini Mint Pie Jars | Sempre Dolce

Some Things to Note:

Crust: feel free to make the Oreo crumbs as fine as you wish, but since this is isn’t a traditional pie, I thought leaving them a little more chunky would be fun. Also, if you go the finer crumb route, I would recommend using a food processor for better results. Otherwise, placing the Oreos in a zip top bag and using the flat end of a meat tenderizer (or something similar) works well.

Filling: I have 30 chopped Andes Mints in the filling, which is a good amount, especially with the extra mints on top, but if you like things really minty then you might consider using 35-40 mints.

Whipped Cream Topping: you can go three routes here. 1.) Make your own, which is what I have in the recipe below. 2.) If you are not serving these at a gathering where you will need the whipped cream to be more stable, you can just use store-bought whipped cream. 3.) Buy an extra small container of frozen whipped topping (Cool Whip) and pipe it on. Whichever way you go, just remember to wait until right before serving to put the whipped cream on.

You will need 2 packages of creme filled cookies (Oreos) for this recipe.

You will need 12 (8 oz) mason jars for this recipe.

Mini Mint Pie Jars | Sempre Dolce

Now go make some mini pies and be instantly transported to a minty paradise!

Cottura Felice!

Mini Mint Pies in Jars
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Ingredients

  • 12 (8 oz) mason jars
  • For the Crust:
  • 1 (15.35 oz) package creme filled cookies (Oreos)
  • 3 tbsp. Unsalted butter, melted
  • Pie Filling:
  • 30 Andes Creme de Menthe Thins, roughly chopped
  • 20 creme filled cookies (Oreos), broken into large chunks
  • 1 (16 oz) container frozen whipped topping, thawed (I used Cool Whip)
  • Whipped Cream Topping:
  • 2 C. heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ C. powdered sugar

Instructions

    For the Crust:
  1. Place creme filled cookies in a large Ziploc bag and using the flat end of a meat tenderizer, or a similar tool, crush cookies into crumbs. (Please see note in post!)
  2. Place crumbs in a medium-sized mixing bowl, and pour in about ⅓ of the melted butter. Stir, breaking up any extra large cookie chunks, then repeat this process 2 times.
  3. Divide crust mixture between jars, then, using a small spoon, press down on mixture to spread around jar and compact the crust.
  4. Place jars in freezer for about 30 minutes.
  5. For the Filling:
  6. In a large mixing bowl, combine thawed frozen whipped topping, cookies, and mints.
  7. Divide filling between jars, cover, and place in fridge; allow to chill for one hour, or until ready to serve.
  8. When ready to serve, make whipped cream.
  9. For the Whipped Cream:
  10. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk cream and powdered sugar until stiff peaks form.
  11. Remove jars from fridge and uncover.
  12. Pipe or spoon whipped cream onto the tops of the pies. Garnish with extra chopped mints, serve and enjoy!
  13. Pies can be kept in fridge for 3 days.
7.6.4
80
https://sempre-dolce.com/mini-mint-pie-jars/

Recipe adapted from Paula Deen.

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Mini S’mores Brownies

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Mini S’mores Brownies: Dense. Fudgy. Perfectly decadent. Easy. Everything you love about s’mores and brownies is compacted into this delicious dessert no one will be able to turn down! 

Mini S'mores Brownies | Sempre Dolce

Happy Friday! Today I’m coming at you with these Mini S’mores Brownies, which I think you are going to ♥. If you’ve been hanging around here for a few of years (if you have, I’d like to know who you are!), you might remember these that I posted back in 2014? This is a variation of that recipe.

I made a few tweaks which make these even better than the original and also a bit simpler; specifically in the just-as-tasty-but-easier-to-make meringue.

Mini S'mores Brownies | Sempre Dolce

The original recipe uses a marshmallow meringue which is good, but a little more time consuming than I like. So for the version here today, I used a Swiss meringue. Much simpler, but just as good. In fact, I might even prefer it over the marshmallow – though that could just be the lazy inside of me speaking there… It seriously is so simple to make and yet provides you with the effect of marshmallow.

Another change made was to chop up the milk chocolate bar and incorporate it into the batter, instead of using whole squares placed on top. I was pleased with the results of this because it almost gives off the taste of a milk chocolate brownie and adds more to the overall s’mores effect.

Mini S'mores Brownies | Sempre Dolce

The end result is so amazing, you guys.

These Mini S’mores Brownies are super easy to make and will be ready in under two hours! The serving size is perfect (helloo, no sharing!) and they are the perfect amount of dense and gooey; choc-full of chocolate, and also, who can resist a pillowy cloud of toasted meringue on top??

Not me.

Enjoy and cottura felice!

Mini S'mores Brownies | Sempre Dolce

Some Things to Note:

Baking: Please, please try not to overbake your brownies, you want them fudgy! (If you don’t, then this recipe is probably not for you!) They should be done in no more than 25 minutes (mine were done in 25). And when testing, remember that there is a lot of chocolate in there, so examine your toothpick/cake tester closely to see whether you are getting batter or chocolate. You want to look for some moist crumbs attached to the toothpick/tester; you will also be able to tell somewhat by looking at the tops. You do not want a center that looks dark and fudgy, if that makes sense. Here is a bit from Epicurious on the matter of baking brownies:

When done, the edges of the brownies will be visibly baked through and the center will be set (that is, not wiggly) when you shake the pan. Guy-Hamilton looks for the first sign of cracking on the brownie’s top—which should be shiny and set—and then pulls them out. These cues override the recipe; even if the instructions suggest baking for five more minutes, when your brownies exhibit these signs and look done, take them out.

Meringue: When adding the meringue, you can use two methods. You can pipe large dots like I did (see photos) or you can place in mounds and swirl it. I must confess that I did the dots for the sake of the photos alone (shame on me) and would actually recommend the mounds as you will have a LOT of meringue left otherwise! (Between you and me, I actually went back after the shoot and added the rest of the meringue, so they looked like they do here – the more the better, right?)

Mini S’mores Brownies
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Ingredients

    For the Brownies:
  • ¼ C. unsalted butter, melted
  • ¾ C. granulated sugar
  • ¾ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ C. + 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • ¼ C. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Pinch of kosher salt (sea or table salt is fine too!)
  • 1 tsp. coffee granules, or espresso powder, optional
  • 1 (4.4 oz) milk chocolate bar, chopped into small pieces
  • 6 mini ready graham cracker crusts (I used Keebler)
  • For the Meringue:
  • 3 egg whites
  • ¾ C. granulated sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325° F. and place mini crusts on a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together melted butter, sugar, and vanilla.
  3. Add egg and whisk to combine.
  4. In a small bowl (I actually used a cereal bowl!), whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and optional coffee granules.
  5. Gradually add to wet ingredients, whisking (or stirring) briefly after each addition until just combined.
  6. Using a rubber spatula, stir in chopped chocolate.
  7. Divide batter evenly between crusts and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick/tester comes out with moist crumbs attached. * Please see note in post!*
  8. Transfer brownies to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
  9. Once brownies are cool, make meringue.
  10. For the meringue:
  11. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together egg whites and sugar.
  12. Place bowl over a pan of simmering water (make sure bowl does not touch water) and whisk until mixture reaches a temperature of 160° F., or until sugar is completely dissolved and egg whites are warm to the touch, about 3-5 minutes.
  13. Transfer bowl to stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form and mixture is thick, glossy, and marshmallow-like in texture, about 5 minutes.
  14. Add meringue by placing mounds on each brownie and swirling around with a spoon. Again, see note in post!
  15. Using a kitchen torch, brown/toast the meringue. Alternatively, you can place under the broiler for about 30 seconds, until browned.
  16. Serve immediately (< recommended!) or place in fridge and bring out 30 minutes to 1 hour before serving to allow the brownies to come to room temperature.
  17. Enjoy!
7.6.4
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https://sempre-dolce.com/mini-smores-brownies/

Brownies adapted from allrecipes.

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Glorified Brownies

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Do you ever crave comfort food? Food that maybe isn’t too difficult or time consuming to make, but also kind of makes you… happy…? I made that sort of food yesterday when I made these Glorified Brownies. Getting the recipe from an old cookbook that doesn’t have pictures, I didn’t know what to expect, but they (the  ingredients and the whole process, that is) looked very promising, so I decided to give them a try. The results were as good as they sounded, brownies with a layer of melted marshmallows on top and then a chocolate frosting to finish it off. Yes, I was quite happy.

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Sempre Dolce in NYC

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I just got back  last week two weeks ago from a whirlwind trip to NYC and it was amazing! Let me tell you a little about it:

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