This happens every year. A holiday approaches and I think “Man, I posted Stuff for that holiday last year. And the year before. I don’t have to do it this year, too!” And then, as I can almost see the holiday peering at me over the horizon, I start to feel guilty, like I’m doing you guys a disservice by not posting at least one new idea for each holiday every year.
This year for St. Patrick’s Day, I’m cutting it super close. It might already be St. Patrick’s Day in Australia for all I know, and I’m just posting!
That’s why this is a quick and easy idea. These last-minute easy chocolate mint shamrock hand pies call for only four ingredients (maybe five, if you’re feeling spunky). Start with a box of store-bought puff pastry, and you can have 10 or 12 of these guys to munch on for a St. Patrick’s Day smackerel.
Since they’re puff-based, they’re less sweet than a cookie, and their crispy outsides and flaky layers are hard to resist. The filling gives just a hint of chocolate mint flavor. I think you’ll dig them. I made a chocolate mint version using melted Delightfulls from Nestlé (the chocolate mint flavor, of course) and a white chocolate mint version using melted Ghirardelli white chocolate with a couple of drops of peppermint oil.
I recommend you melt the chocolate instead of just tossing a few chips inside each hand pie. These guys are pretty small and the pastry is fairly delicate so you run the risk of the chips poking holes in your top crust. No fun.
For the Pies
- 2 sheets puff pastry, , thawed but still cold
- 4 Tablespoons Nestle Delightfulls Chocolate Mint filled morsels, (you could also use regular chocolate chips and peppermint oil)
- 2 oz (1/2 bar or 4 squares) Ghirardelli white chocolate
- 2-3 drops peppermint oil
To Finish and Bake
- 1 egg beaten with 1 teaspoon water and a pinch of salt
- Sprinkles of your choice. I used some green sanding sugar
For the Pies
- Put one piece of puff pastry in the fridge.
- Roll the other sheet between 2 pieces of parchment until it is about 12" square. You want the puff to be fairly thin since you'll be dealing with a double thickness when baking.
- Put the rolled sheet in the fridge and do the same to the second sheet.
- Using a 3" shamrock cutter (or whatever shape you want--just not too intricate since you'll be filling these guys) cut out an equal number of shapes from each sheet of puff. Refrigerate for about 20 minutes. You can also freehand these, but take it from me, it's a bit of a pain.
- In a microwave set to medium power, melt the filled morsels and/or white chocolate in 30 second bursts, stirring between each 30 seconds, until smooth. Add the peppermint oil if using. Careful--it's strong, so 2-3 drops should be sufficient.
- Let cool for a few minutes while the dough chills.
- Place about 1/2 teaspoon filling in the center of each of the three leaves of half your shamrocks. If making round ones, you can probably use about 2 teaspoons for 3" circles. Make sure you don't overfill--you can always dip them in melted chocolate if you want more chocolatey goodness. What you don't want is for the hand pies to bust open in the oven. Err on the side of caution.
- Place another shamrock shape down over a filled shape. Press the edges together with your fingers. Press hard.
- Place the filled hand pies on a parchment lined sheet and chill for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 400F.
To Finish and Bake
- Remove the hand pies from the fridge and brush each one with a light layer of egg wash.
- Sprinkle on your sugar or sprinkles or whatever you're using.
- Bake in the center of the oven for 10 minutes.
- Turn the pan 180 degrees and bake for an additional 5 minutes or until the puff is a nice, deep golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool on wire racks. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- These are best served the day you make them. If you have to hold them overnight, store them at room temperature and then crisp them up in the toaster oven for 2-3 minutes the next day.
You can't gather and re-roll the puff scraps all in one big pile, but you can roll or press some cinnamon sugar into each piece and bake like wee cookies.
You can fill the pies with jam if you want, but if you do, make sure you use just a little bit and then you cut a couple of vent holes in the top shape. The chocolate will stay put better than the jam which will get very thin and liquidy when in the oven.
I feel so much better now that I’ve shared a St. Patrick’s Day recipe with you guys! I hope you enjoy these crispy, fun, easy chocolate mint shamrock hand pies, whether you make them in shamrock shapes or not. This is also a fun project you could do with your kids. Just remind them that less is more when it comes to filling!
Pictured: White chocolate and peppermint oil filling. Look at all those crispy layers!
Thanks for spending time with me today. Have a lovely St. Patrick’s Day.
A couple of my other St. Patrick’s Day recipes: