[Photograph: Pam Parrella]

Few things can put me in the holiday spirit as quickly as a mint chocolate one-two punch. While Holiday Peppermint 'Crack' delivers on the flavor combo, sometimes you want a lot more chocolate. Recently when I was chatting with Serious Eater CityMinx about favorite homemade desserts she raved about mint sticks—a triple-layer, intensely chocolatey fudgy brownie bar—and very kindly offered to share her grandma's recipe.

Here's what CityMinx's Uncle Mark had to say about his favorite childhood treat:

Millie, my mother was an excellent baker. Family, friends and neighbors all raved about her wonderful pastries, cookies, cakes and pies. Of all my mom's terrific sugary delights my very favorite was her mint sticks. Think firm chewy brownie (sometimes with nuts) and a York Peppermint Patty. Biting into one was pure heaven. The brownie moist and chocolaty covered by a thin layer of mint icing (helps remove the chocolate odor from your breath so people won't know you've been eating sweets:), on top of which is an even thinner layer of bittersweet chocolate (oh well, so much for removing the chocolate smell from your breath). When mom prepared them my brother and I would always have to wait until the icing set before we were aloud to feast on them. I remember the waiting was agonizing.

Mom would often make a lot and freeze the leftovers, so we she could use them at a party or we could enjoy them another day. She told us we needed to wait for them to reach room temperature before we could eat them, which was way too long for my brother. He discovered just how wonderful these little bite size morsels were severed iced cold.

It may be tempting to nibble on these bars as soon as they're ready, but steel yourself and pop them in the freezer for maximum enjoyment. You might want to have one (or several) glasses of cold milk at hand, because these go down easy.

Got a favorite classic American dessert recipe you'd like to see featured here? Email us with the subject: "American Classics."

Get the Recipe

"Mama's" Mint Sticks »

About the author: Alexandra Penfold is mild-mannered children's book editor by day, food ninja by night. Never one to skip dessert she's the Brownie half of Blondie & Brownie and a Midtown Lunch contributor. You can follow her on Twitter at @blondiebrownie.


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