A delicious twist on holiday cookies that will be adored (and devoured) by children and adults alike! My family gets together every Christmas Eve to bake dozens of holiday classics - everything from your church window cookies to thumbprint cookies. It was time to incorporate a new treat into our Christmas tradition; and, as the foodie of the family, it was up to me to get creative! I came up with these kid-friendly, holiday-inspired cookie "mugs" because children love to help assemble them, and they bring out the "kid" in everyone - even the scrooge of the family!
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking soda, and salt until well combined.
3. To the bowl of stand mixer, add the butter, brown sugar, and half of the granulated sugar, and beat on medium speed until well-creamed, light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla extract, and beat until incorporated. Gradually beat in the flour mixture, until just incorporated.
4. Shape the dough into balls using about one tablespoon of dough per ball. Fill a small bowl with the remaining granulated sugar, and roll each cookie dough ball in the sugar to coat. Drop one dough ball into each slot of a lightly-greased, 24-cavity mini muffin pan. Gently press down on the center of each dough ball with your thumb, and work the dough up the sides of each cavity just slightly with your fingers. Transfer the muffin pan to the preheated oven and bake for 7 minutes.
5. Remove the muffin pan from the oven, and immediately use a small spoon to gently press the dough against the sides of each cavity. Return the muffin pan to the oven and bake for an additional 3 to 5 minutes. Once the cookies are done, allow them to cool for several minutes in the muffin pan before carefully transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely before filling.
6. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Add the white chocolate chips and butter pieces to a medium-sized, heat-proof bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat, until simmering. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate chip mixture, and whisk until combined and smooth; stir in the peppermint extract and candy cane pieces. Allow the filling to cool and thicken, about 30 minutes, stirring periodically.
7. To assemble the cookie mugs, carefully break off the loops of the mini candy canes using kitchen shears to use as handles for the mugs. Set aside the leftover straight portions of the candy canes to use as straws. Melt the ounce of white chocolate chips, and use it to attach the candy cane handles to the cookie mugs. Using a piping bag or small spoon, fill each cookie mug with the filling mixture, and finish with mallow bits and the leftover candy cane straw segments. Enjoy!