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Monday, December 12, 2011

Peppermint Mallomars

We are two weeks away from the culmination of the holiday season and my house is full of delicious cookies!  Yes, I've been making dozens and dozens of cookies, but that is not the only reason why I am buried in deliciousness.  Perhaps you have noticed a theme among some of your favorite food blogs today.  The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap! 

I'm so happy to be a part of such a fun, creative and generous group of people.  I originally saw the idea posted on Love and Olive Oil a few weeks ago.  A grand cookie swap between the bloggers of the world.  A massacre of flour, sugar and butter that would culminate in the biggest collection of holiday cookies in one place. 

It was probably not very simple to orchestrate, so many thanks to Lindsay from Love and Olive oil and Julie of The Little Kitchen.  They were able to organize over six hundred bloggers in a complex cookie swap, each blogger sending out three dozen cookies and receiving a three dozen cookies in return, mmm cookies...

I tried out a whole bunch of different recipes before I finally came up with this one.  Something that really represents what I have been doing all year long.  A combination of candy and cookie, I give you the holiday mallomar.  The marshmallow is coated in sparkly sprinkles, rather than chocolate, on top of a dark chocolate cookie.  If you haven't tried making marshmallow yet this year, you should dust your candy thermometer off and get into the kitchen.

Peppermint Mallomars
A Wilde Original

Cookie Base

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
8 tbsp (1 stick) butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs

Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt, set aside.  In a small saucepan over low heat, stir chocolate, butter and brown sugar until melted.  Set aside to cool for a few minutes.

In a large bowl, beat eggs for a minute.  Add chocolate mixture and beat until blended.  Slowly add in flour mixture until combined, the dough will form a ball.

Split dough into quarters and place each between two sheets of parchment paper.  Roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness and place on a baking sheet in the fridge.  Allow dough sheets to chill for 30 minutes.

Heat oven to 350 F.  Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter (or biscuit cutter like me!) and punch out circles of dough.  Place about 1/2-inch apart on a baking sheet.  Place the un-baked sheets of cookie dough circles in the fridge until you are ready to bake them.  Bake cookies for 8-10  minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 1 minute.  Remove from the cookie sheet and allow to cool completely.

Peppermint Marshmallow

1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp water
1 tsp peppermint flavor (not extract)
1 1/2 tbsp unflavored gelatin

1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp water
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp water
pinch salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar

In a cup, mix together water, peppermint flavor and gelatin.  Set aside and let the gelatin bloom.

In a 2-quart pot, combine all ingredients for the base.  Stir to wet the sugar and top with the lid.  Heat the sugar syrup over medium and allow to boil for 2 minutes, washing down any sugar crystals from the walls of the pot.  Remove the lid, clip on your candy thermometer and heat to 250 F. 

Remove from the heat and add the gelatin bloom, stir to combine then transfer to your mixing bowl.  Whip on high for 10 minutes.  Transfer the marshmallow batter to a piping bag, fitted with a 1/2-inch tip.  Pipe a blob of marshmallow on the top of each cookie.  Let the marshmallow set for 1 hour then roll each cookie in sprinkles.
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