Photo: Jodi Pudge
As far as we're concerned, brownies can do no wrong, especially when there's a peppermint layer involved. If you're short on time, try using a store-bought mix for the base.
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup butter, cubed
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
For Brownie Base: Line an 8 in square baking pan with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 325°F. Place sugar, butter and cocoa in a saucepan set over low heat. Stir often until melted and smooth. Remove from heat. Beat in eggs, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Beat in vanilla.
In a medium bowl, stir together flour and baking powder. Add to cocoa mixture and beat until completely mixed. Pour into pan and bake until edges are set, 25-30 minutes. Place on a rack to cool completely in the pan.
For Peppermint Topping: Place white chocolate and cream in a bowl. Microwave on medium in 1 minute intervals, stirring as needed, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in butter, then 1⁄4 tsp of the peppermint extract and the food colouring. Taste and stir in an additional 1⁄4 tsp extract, if desired. Cool in the fridge, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.
For Chocolate Topping: Follow the same cooking method for Peppermint Topping, but leave at room temperature. Stir occasionally. Leave cooled brownies in pan. Evenly spread with mint topping, then refrigerate until firm (it'll still be a little sticky), about 30 minutes. Spread chocolate overtop mint, and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Remove from pan, peel off parchment and cut into squares.