Mint Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

These cupcakes were inspired by last weeks Dirty Girl Scout Cookies. If you know me on a personal level, you know I have a love of Thin Mints. It boarders on an obsession. I usually buy, like, 5-10 boxes… and hoard them all someplace where my husband or people visiting us can’t find them. 😉 Tragically… I haven’t seen a single box of Thin Mints (or a single Girl Scout selling them) since we moved to PA.
I also really love Andes Mints. My mom used to buy them for Thanksgiving and Christmas. After dinner she’d arrange them on the desert trays, nestled between sugar cookies, pies, and brownies. Sigh. Food really brings back memories…
 
In the interest of time, and my horribly short attention span, I think that’s enough reminiscing. On to the baking!
 
After one last note… I kind of “Winged It” this week. I knew what I wanted to make, just not how I was going to do it. I thought of using Junior Mints, but I’m still not sure what would happen if I put them in the oven. Would they melt away? Or burn?!
 
So, during my trip to the grocery store  I decided to use the Andes. I was originally going to buy a box of them to use as a garnish, and a bag of the pre-chopped ones to use for everything else. unfortunately my grocery store doesn’t carry the pre packaged chunks. I ended up buying a bulk bag from the mix and match candy section (which was cheaper than buying boxes). That’s why the numbers are kind of strange in the recipe. In total, I used/ had 45 Andes Mints. I had to make sure there was enough for the cupcakes, the frosting, and the garnish!
 
I used a version of my FAVORITE chocolate cake recipe from Restless Chipotle. As usual. One of these days, I’m going to expand and try a  new recipe. Maybe. I chose the ratios of liqueur based on the icing from the Dirty Girl Scout Cookies last week. The Creme de Menthe is a pretty strong flavor, and I didn’t want to overwhelm the chocolate.
 
The buttercream is my usual frosting recipe. I did, however, have an issue with getting the frosting on the cupcake. Some of the Andes chunks were too big, my decorating tip and the frosting bag were both too small! I really need to invest in larger decorating tips, and a bag stand…  Amazon here I come! Other than that, these came out pretty delish.
 
Try it out for yourself! Just click on the Recipes tab and start exploring!
-Hey Waitress!!
 
Pix added 8/3/12
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