Christmas, Cupcakes & Small Cakes

‘Bittermint’ Brownie Bites

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We are nearly there. Only a couple more days to go and just enough time to squeeze in one more festive recipe before I sign off for Christmas.

I am hoping that the worst is over now. I have battled the swarms of people in town (and come home without the things I went in for because it was so crazy busy I completely lost all ability to function save weaving in and out of people and had to do it all again). I had to pay the extortionate cost of 1st class stamps in order to post my Christmas cards because I completely forgot to post them early enough (fortunately I didn’t have many). And as of 11am last night, everything is wrapped (apart from the one thing I am still waiting for the postman to bring). Phew. There are still things to do of course, but there is less than there was.

Now all we need is the weather to behave. As I type we are in the midst of gale force winds which is driving the torrential rain in a horizontal direction. Not pleasant. Not weather that you want to venture out into. Not weather that you want to be on a plane in. My Grandmother is due to fly down this afternoon. The plane may be able to land, but probably only after it has been buffeted across the Channel to Belgium. Crossing all fingers and toes that her journey is not too turbulent or disrupted. We don’t fancy a trip to Belgium to pick her up!

Nasty weather calls for comforting treats. There are plenty of those around at this time of year. But how about these little morsels?

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These dense, fudgy little brownie bites have a hint of peppermint which comes from the small piece of chocolate covered peppermint sweet baked into the top of them. I used Bendicks Bittermints, which have a hard centre, like Kendal mint cake, and a strong but not overpowering mint taste, but feel free to use whichever peppermint sweet you fancy.

A word of warning though, it would probably be best if you lined the mini muffin pan with paper cases. I didn’t. Which meant that as the melted peppermint sweet cooled in the pan, it stuck to the bottom, making the brownie bites a little difficult to get out. If you don’t want to serve half of them upside down with the bottom scraped out of the pan and squished back on, then I suggest you don’t do the same.

And don’t be put off by the fact that these contain chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour. I know it is a strong flavour but with the potato flour and quality cocoa powder, you don’t know it is there. Plus its inclusion means that the carb content of these bites is lower. Just what we need at this time of year.

Oh, and did I mention that they are egg-free / vegan too?

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Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!

‘Bittermint’ Brownie Bites

Makes approximately 24 mini muffins bites

Print the recipe here

Ingredients:

  • 57g gram (chickpea / garbanzo) flour.
  • 17g potato flour / starch
  • 1 tbsp powdered arrowroot
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/8 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 25g dark cocoa powder
  • 41ml rapeseed oil
  • 62ml unsweetened applesauce (I use baby food in a jar for ease)
  • 3 Bendicks Bittermints, cut into small pieces

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170 celsius / 150 fan / 340 fahrenheit. Line a mini muffin pan with paper cases.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
  3. Add the oil and applesauce and stir until combined.
  4. Using a melon baller or a teaspoon, divide the mixture between the paper cases. Press a piece of mint sweet into the top of each one.
  5. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until they are firm around the edge.
  6. Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Dust with icing sugar (optional).
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