Last week the New York Times Dining Section published an article about recreating childhood treats: It’s Not Junk if I Made It. In the article Jennifer Steinhauer reminisces about her childhood lunchbox snacks (Ding Dongs, Twinkies, ect..) and her mission to recreate them in her own kitchen.
The article got me thinking. Considering that I have never consumed or tasted a single Hostess product (I guess a sign of a deprived childhood?), I needed to come up with a snack that I loved and that I could recreate.
I don’t want this post to confuse you. I was NEVER a Girl Scout (I am not quite the outdoorsy type, but I am down for a Troop Beverly Hills viewing anytime ), but just because I didn’t sell the cookies doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy them!
Here are three common Girl Scout recipes that I revamped to take the form of other favorite desserts:
Adapted from Baking Bites
Ingredients: 18-oz semisweet chocolate chips. 1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk. 4 tbsp butter. 1 tsp vanilla extract. 3 cups mini marshmallows. 2 cups chopped graham crackers.
Directions: 1. Line an 8-inch foil pan with lightly greased plastic wrap 2. Line a baking sheet with foil and spread out marshmallows on the baking sheet. Using a torch lightly brown the marshmallows 3. In a double boiler, mix chocolate, sweetened condensed milk, butter and vanilla extract. Stir frequently, until very smooth 4. Fold the graham cracker pieces and roasted marshmallows into the chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula 5. Pour combined mixture into the prepared pan 6. Allow fudge to set at room temperature for 4-6 hours before you cut into squares
Samoa Cookie Bars
Ingredients: Sugar Cookie Dough (store bought works great!). 3 cups of coconut, shredded. 12-oz of caramels. 3 tbsp. of milk. dash of salt. 6-oz semisweet chocolate chips.
Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 350°F 2. Line an 8-inch foil pan with parchment paper 3. Using your fingers, press the sugar cookie dough into an even layer in the pan 4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until the edges are golden brown 5. Allow the cookie base to cool completely before adding the topping. For the topping: 1. Preheat oven to 300°F 2. Spread the coconut out onto a large baking sheet and toast in the oven until golden brown (about 15 minutes) 3. Allow the coconut to cool 4. In a microwave safe bowl combine the caramels, milk and salt 5. Microwave caramel mixture in 1 minute intervals until caramel is smooth 6. Pour the caramel over the coconut and mix until well combined 7. Spread the coconut and caramel mixture onto the cookie base and let come to room temperature 8. Once cool, wrap in parchment paper and plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour 9. When you are ready to cut the bars, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave 10. Splatter the bars with the melted chocolate 11. Once the chocolate is set you can cut it into cookie bars
Thin Mint Macarons
Adapted from Barbara Bakes
Ingredients: 100 grams powdered sugar . 50 grams almond meal. 20 grams unsweetened cocoa powder. 60 grams egg whites, at room temperature. 40 grams granulated sugar. Filling: 1/2 stick butter, melted. 2 cups powdered sugar. 2 tbsp. milk. 2 tsp. peppermint extract. green food coloring (color as desired).
Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 310ºF 2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and prepare a pastry bag (or plastic bag with tip cut) to be filled with batter by setting the pastry bag in a tall glass 3. Combine the powdered sugar, cocoa powder and almond meal. 4. Pulse in a blender until the dry mixture is very fine 5. With an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form, gradually adding the granulated sugar 6. Fold the dry ingredients, in two batches, into the beaten egg whites with a rubber spatula 7. Once the mixture is smooth and there are no streaks of white, scrape the batter into the pastry bag 8. Pipe the batter onto the parchment-lined baking sheet in 1-inch circles 9. Knock the baking sheet a few times firmly on the counter to flatten the macarons 10. Leave out, uncovered for 15 minutes, then bake them for 15 minutes 11. Let cool completely before removing from baking sheet. Filling: 1. In a medium bowl, melt the butter 2. Alternate whisking in the powdered sugar and the milk 3. Add the peppermint extract until you achieve desired taste 4. Add green food coloring and whisk until blended 5. Line a tall glass with a gallon sized zip lock bag and spoon in the filling 6. Cut a small hole in one corner, and pipe filling onto the bottom side of one shell 7. Top with another shell to finish
A very special thanks to my Tasty Tuesday Guinea Pigs (aka taste testers): Rachel, Blake, Julie, Amanda, Oliver, and Diane
Bloopers (Safety First): If you don’t own a torch, leave the marshmallows for the s’mores fudge as purchased! I thought putting the marshamallows in the oven would be more efficient than using a torch. This was the result:
Bake Up. Eat Up.