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Chocolate-Peppermint Bars

Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Heather Chadduck
Hands-on time 30 mins
Total time 2 hrs, 40 mins
Yield Makes 4 dozen
With a drizzle of dark chocolate and a sprinkle of crushed peppermints, simple shortbread cookies are transformed into Chocolate-Peppermint Bars.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Wax and parchment paper
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate morsels
  • 12 crushed hard peppermint candies

How to Make It

  1. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until smooth. Stir in vanilla and almond extracts until blended.

  2. Stir together flour and next 2 ingredients. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating at low speed until blended.

  3. Divide dough in half; flatten each into a disk. Roll each disk to 1/4-inch thickness between 2 sheets of wax paper. Transfer dough, in wax paper, to a baking sheet; chill 1 hour.

  4. Preheat oven to 350°. Working with 1 portion of dough at a time, remove top wax paper; cut into 2 1/2- x 3/4-inch rectangles, rerolling dough scraps once. Place 1 inch apart on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.

  5. Bake at 350° for 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are golden. Cool on baking sheets 1 minute; transfer to wire racks. Cool completely.

  6. Microwave dark chocolate morsels in a microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 1 1/2 minutes or until melted and smooth, stirring every 30 seconds. Drizzle over cookies. Sprinkle crushed hard peppermint candies over cookies. Let stand until firm. Store in airtight containers.