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Sunday, February 21, 2016

J@H - Moon Pies

Continuing with my quest to finish my 2015 challenge, I bring you Homemade Moon Pies!

Now, I'm not really sure what part of the country you find moon pies. I feel like they are not a nationwide snack. I managed to locate one at my local Foodtown and was able to taste test the original.

What Did I think? Blech, not terribly impressive. To be perfectly honest, it wasn't at all what I was expecting. The only version of the Moon Pie that I could locate was a vanilla, double-decker version. Thankfully I only bought one, rather than an entire box, because they would have all gone to waste.

Making a homemade version of this treat was going to be easy. Bake some graham cracker rounds, fill them with marshmallow and cover them in chocolate. That was right up my alley, I'm old hat at making marshmallows and I love coating things in chocolate. I went to my favorite vanilla marshmallow recipe and made a small change to my graham cracker recipe. The whole thing came together pretty quickly.

These homemade Moon Pies were so much tastier than the store-bought version. The recipe made about 24 sandwich cookies. I ate about half of them without the chocolate coating and shared the completed cookies with my friends. They were amazing both ways! You should definitely think about making your own moon pies before picking them up at the store.

One Year Ago: Girl Scout Samoa Cookies
Two Years Ago: Cookie Dough Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes
Three Years Ago: Cherry Kuchen Bars
Four Years Ago: Cherry-Coconut Bagels
Five Years Ago: Cherry Turkish Taffy

Graham Cracker Cookies
A Wilde Original

3 1/4 cups flour
1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 kosher salt
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-tablespoon cubes
1/3 cup golden syrup
5 tablespoon milk
2 tablespoons vanilla extract

Combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Add butter and pulse until the butter is incorporated and the mixture is coarse.

In a small bowl, whisk together golden syrup, milk and vanilla extract. Add to the flour mixture and pulse to combine. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and set in the fridge for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 ⁰F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats.

Cut dough in half, return the other half to the fridge.  Roll out dough on a floured surface, about 1/8-inches thick. Stamp out 2 1/2-inch circles and place on the prepared baking sheets. Pop the baking sheets int he fridge for 30 minutes while you roll out the other half of the dough. Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cookies cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheet then remove to a wire rack and cool completely.

Marshmallow Filling
Adapted from Marshmallows

for the bloom

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon cold water
3/4 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 tablespoons powdered gelatin

for the marshmallow base

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons light corn syrup (not 'lite')
Pinch of salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar

Whisk together cold water, vanilla extract and powdered gelatin. Let gelatin bloom while you prepare the marshmallow base.

Combine water, corn syrup, salt and sugar in a 2-quart pot. Clip on a candy thermometer and bring to a boil. Allow sugar syrup to boil, without stirring, until the temperature reaches 250 ⁰F. Add gelatin and whisk until dissolved. Pour marshmallow base into the bowl of a stand mixer with the whip attachment. Start whipping on medium speed until the base becomes shiny. Turn speed up to high and beat until white, fluffy and cool. Transfer to a piping bag equipped with a 1-cm round tip.

Assemble the Moon Pies

Equipment & Ingredients
- Double boiler or pot and a bowl that sits comfortably on top of the pot
- 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoon vegetable or grapeseed oil
- Small offset spatula
- Parchment paper

Pipe blobs of marshmallow onto half of the cookies. Top marshmallow with the other half. Let the cookies and marshmallows set for at least 1 hour.

Add 1-inch of water to the bottom of a pot and bring to a simmer. Set a bowl or double boiler over the simmering water. Melt chocolate chips with vegetable oil in the double boiler and stir until smooth. Drop the cookie sandwiches into the melted chocolate, top first. Flip over the cookies to completely coat in chocolate. Fish cookie out of the chocolate with the offset spatula. Tap spatula on the edge of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. Set cookie on the parchment paper. Continue enrobing the cookies with chocolate.

Place cookies in the fridge to set chocolate completely. Try not to eat them all!

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