Why Buy When You Can Bake?

This marks my first ever Daring Baker's challenge. When I first saw what the challenge was, I was super excited. COOKIES! I love cookies! The July Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Nicole at Sweet Tooth. She chose Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milano Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network. Milanos just happen to be my all time favorite cookies, so I was definitely excited to make those. And I have been wanting to try my hand at making homemade marshmallows for a while, too.
I started with the Marshmallow cookies, because I had no idea how long it was going to take me to make the marshmallows. It turned out to be not too hard. A giant sticky mess all over my kitchen, but not difficult. Then when you add the melted chocolate coating on top of them and sprinkle on some toasted coconut on top, there was definitely a mess. All over. But it was a yummy mess, so I didn't mind.
The Milanos were fairly easy to make. They ended not looking anything like the store bought Pepperidge Farms cookies, but they tasted a bajillion times better. AND I made them bigger than the store bought ones! Bigger cookies are always better, in my opinion.


I got caught printing off the recipes at work, so my punishment for illegal use of the work printer was that I had to bring them in for my coworkers to sample. Haha, pretty horrible punishment, huh?
My husbands classmates have been begging him to bring in something I have made for a while now, and he definitely laid claim to these. By the time I got them all split into groups, I only got to eat a few of them. But its probably a good thing, because I would have eaten them all. Every last one.

Milano Cookies
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website

• 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter, softened
• 2 1/2 cups (312.5 grams/ 11.02 oz) powdered sugar
• 7/8 cup egg whites (from about 6 eggs)
• 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
• 2 tablespoons lemon extract
• 1 1/2 cups (187.5grams/ 6.61 oz) all purpose flour

Cookie filling:
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
• 1 orange, zested

1. In a mixer cream the butter and the sugar.
2. Add the egg whites gradually and then mix in the vanilla and lemon extracts.
3. Add the flour and mix until just well mixed.
4. With a small (1/4-inch) plain tip, pipe 1-inch sections of batter onto a parchment-lined sheet pan, spacing them 2 inches apart as they spread.
5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Let cool on the pan.
6. While waiting for the cookies to cool, in a small saucepan over medium flame, scald cream in a double broiler, until just before it starts to boil.
7. Pour hot cream over chocolate in a bowl, whisk to melt chocolate, add zest and blend well.
8. Set aside to cool (the mixture will thicken as it cools).
9. Spread a thin amount of the filling onto the flat side of a cookie while the filling is still soft and press the flat side of a second cookie on top.
10. Repeat with the remainder of the cookies.

Mallows(Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies)
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website

• 3 cups (375grams/13.23oz) all purpose flour
• 1/2 cup (112.5grams/3.97oz) white sugar
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
• 3/8 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter
• 3 eggs, whisked together
• Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows
• Chocolate glaze, recipe follows

1. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.
2. On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.
3. Add the eggs and mix until combine.
4. Form the dough into a disk, wrap with clingfilm or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
5. When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
7. Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.
8. Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.
9. Pipe a “kiss” of marshmallow onto each cookie. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.
10. Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.
11. One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze.
12. Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl.
13. Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.

Homemade marshmallows:
• 1/4 cup water
• 1/4 cup light corn syrup
• 3/4 cup (168.76 grams/5.95oz) sugar
• 1 tablespoon powdered gelatin
• 2 tablespoons cold water
• 2 egg whites , room temperature
• 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a saucepan, combine the water, corn syrup, and sugar, bring to a boil until “soft-ball” stage, or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer. If you don't have a candy thermometer, don't fret, you can still make homemade marshmallows! You know that the soft ball stage has been reached when the bubbles remain in the sugar solution after you have removed the pot from the heat. Also, if you take a small drop of the sugar solution and place it into a dish with cold water in it, the sugar solution should form a small soft ball. Hence, the term "soft-ball". :)
2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and let dissolve.
3. Remove the syrup from the heat, add the gelatin, and mix.
4. Whip the whites until soft peaks form and pour the syrup into the whites.
5. Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff. This will take what seems like forever. Just keep whipping. Just keep whipping. Just keep whipping, whipping, whipping!
6. There are three ways you can go from here. First, you can transfer to a piping bag and pipe directly onto the cookies to set. You can also transfer to a baking sheet lined with powdered sugar and then cut out shapes using a cookie cutter, or cut into bars. And finally, you can line a baking sheet with a deep layer of powdered sugar and creating a mold into the powdered sugar into which you pour the marhsmallows. Let the marshmallows set for 2 hours, or until firm.

Chocolate glaze:
• 12 ounces semisweet chocolate
• 2 ounces cocoa butter or vegetable oil

1. Melt the 2 ingredients together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water.

6 comments:

  1. Absolute perfection! Your Milans look right out of the bag, but even more tasty, and your mallows are perfectly shaped, glossy and beautiful! I wish we could all get together and share!! :)

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  2. Welcome to the Daring Bakers! Great job on your first challenge--I love the coconut on the Mallows, they look delicious! :)

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  3. Welcome to the Daring Bakers! What a fun first challenge, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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  4. Welcome to the DB community. And Congratulations on a challenge very well done.

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  5. Welcome- You did such a fantastic job on your first challenge! Can't wait to see what's next... :)

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  6. Oh, no! You got caught printing recipes at work hahaha. It's a good thing they took it well. Your cookies look great! Good job.

    ReplyDelete

Your Comments Make Me Smile! :)

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