Mint milanos have become one of my most requested cookies of the holiday season. I started making them a few years back as a component of a chocolate dessert on one of my restaurant menus. I found they were a playful twist to add to a plated dessert, and right away they were a hit. I quickly learned that as soon as anyone hears the word milano, they smile, and are eager to try. Like me, the recipe has evolved over the years.
I now use my melt in your mouth butter cookies and white chocolate peppermint ganache which work extremely well together. The butter cookies have so much flavor, and when baked take on a slight golden color that just taunts you till you try one. I rolled them out really thin for these to get that milano effect I wanted to achieve. They are on the delicate side because they are all butter which translates into crazy good! For the filling I made a white chocolate peppermint ganache using Callebaut white chocolate and pure peppermint extract. It is so important to use good quality white chocolate and pure peppermint extract, trust me! The ganache is smooth and silky making it a perfect match for the butter cookies. You might have a little ganache left over, but I promise it won’t last long. A little left over ganache, some Valrhona cocoa powder, warm milk, and possibly a shot of Baileys…. I might have concocted something like that, so I’m just putting it out there! Okay back to the milanos, once they were filled I melted some white chocolate and drizzled it over them. I used a paper cornet, which is just a small piping bag made of parchment paper, but a ziploc bag works just as well. I repeated this with pink chocolate to give it a little pop of color, and really, because it’s me here. I just want to mention that when you drizzle chocolate like this make sure your chocolate is warm enough that it’s fluid to achieve a smooth, clean look. I popped the cookies in the fridge to set, and then I dusted them with a very light pink pearl dust. The dust didn’t add any color, it just added a slight shimmer. The finished cookies have a soft, pretty look, and they just twinkle when the light hits them.
|A close up shot shows the little bit of sparkle that the pearl dust adds|
Melt in Your Mouth Butter Cookies
- 3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp.
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1t. salt
- 1T. vanilla bean paste – You can use vanilla extract, but I really like how the specks of vanilla beans look in the cookies.
- 2 & 1/4 cups AP flour
- Cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy.
- Add vanilla bean paste.
- Mix in flour and salt just till combined.
- Wrap in plastic wrap & refrigerate till well chilled, at least 2 hours.
- Roll out dough while it is still firm. You can be generous with the flour on your work surface and rolling pin. If it gets too soft and sticky pop it back in the fridge.
- Cut out snowflakes and bake at 350 degrees for 10-11 minutes, rotating once halfway through. I recommend popping the cookies in the fridge or freezer for about 20 minutes prior to baking so they keep their shape.
- Store in an air tight container at room temp till ready to use.
*Note: You can make this dough, roll it, cut out shapes, and freeze them in advance.
White Chocolate Peppermint Ganache
- 10 ounces good quality white chocolate, I use Callebaut
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 1t. pure peppermint extract
- Bring heavy cream to a scald.
- Pour over chopped white chocolate and stir until mixture is smooth.
- Add peppermint extract.
- Stir ganache every often till it comes down to room temp. Once it is cool, cover and refrigerate till ready to use.
- Sandwich cookies with ganache. I made my ganache 2 days ahead of time, so when I was ready to assemble I set it out on the counter for about 10 minutes till it was pliable.
- I melted white chocolate and using a paper cornet, a small piping bag made from parchment paper, I drizzled it across the cookies. You can also use a small ziploc bag for this. Just fill, snip a small corner hole, and drizzle.
- Repeat the above with pink chocolate drizzling in the opposite direction. Refrigerate when done.
- Once chocolate is set I brushed them with a very light pink pearl dust.
*The quicker you drizzle the chocolate, the cleaner the lines will look.
*Butter cookies are delicate, so handle gently.
*Store cut out snowflake dough in the freezer to get ahead.