From Cupcakes to Traditional Korean Food and Everything in Between

Hot Cocoa Cookies + Homemade Marshmallows {No Corn Syrup}!

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Have you ever tried a homemade marshmallow?  It wasn’t until college that I had my first taste.  Until then, I was firm on that I disliked this chewy goop, excluding the ones found in a box of lucky charms, of course.  That year could possibly be marked as the marshmallow-insaned year of the comedically gigantic marshmallows, the cute animal shaped marshmallows, the brilliantly colored marshmallows…oh and the ridiculous list goes on.  You see, when marshmallows are done right, they can be oh so yummy and addictive.  Here, they take front and center stage in these indulgent holiday cookies creating a perfect compliment to the double chocolate action.  They’re softly vanilla with a pillowy, light, and airy texture that when broiled, develop this insane sugary crust where just beneath is melting, oozing marshmallow cream.  Like I said.  Yum.

 

 

 

5.0 from 5 reviews
Hot Cocoa Cookies
 
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Serves: 2-3 Dozen
Ingredients
Cookies:
  • 1½ c unbleached flour
  • ⅓ c unsweetened cocoa
  • ¼ ts instant espresso powder
  • ½ ts baking powder
  • ¼ ts baking soda
  • ¼ ts fine salt
  • 1 stick soft unsalted butter
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 room temperature egg
  • ½ c room temperature whole sour cream
  • 1 ts vanilla extract
  • 1 c melted chocolate
Marshmallows:
  • 2 tb grass fed gelatin
  • ½ c water
  • 2 c sugar
  • ½ c water
  • ¼ ts fine salt
  • 2 ts pure vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, sift/whisk together the flour, cocoa, coffee, baking powder/soda, and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.
  3. Blend in the egg then the sour cream, and vanilla.
  4. In thirds, slowly combine the dry bowl with the second, wet bowl. Do not over mix.
  5. Chill the dough for 15-30 minutes, if time allows.
  6. Scoop and bake at 350 for 9-11 minutes. Cool completely.
  7. Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatin into the water and set aside.
  8. In a saucepan, stir and dissolve the sugar and water. Do not boil.
  9. Stir in the bloomed gelatin and bring to a boil.
  10. Transfer this mixture into a mixing bowl and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  11. Add the vanilla and salt.
  12. Whisk for about 15 minutes or until it becomes fluffy, white, and voluminous.
  13. Pour into a pan that is well greased with tons of powdered sugar or lined with parchment or parchment/powdered sugar. Allow to dry out for a few hours.
  14. Dust a board with lots of powdered sugar and cut out cubes as needed.
  15. Top each cookie with a marshmallow and hit it with a broiler. Keep your eye on it so it doesn't burn. Alternatively, you could use a creme brûlée torch.
Notes
Prep does not include inactive time.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

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Thick double chocolate cookies that are soft and cakey with a peppermint crackle.  These just scream Christmas to me and while I weighed out my ingredients, folding this into that, I finally allowed myself to fully immerse in the Christmas spirit {as I feel fairly strongly about not allowing Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday, to serve as a mere speed bump to the glitzier Christmas}.  The sexy dark chocolate paired with the bright refreshing peppermint made me finally feel that it was ok to begin ushering in the Christmas spirit.  Won’t you join me?

 

 

 

5.0 from 3 reviews
Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
 
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Author:
Serves: 2 Dozen
Ingredients
Cookies:
  • 1½ c unbleached flour
  • ⅓ c unsweetened cocoa
  • ¼ ts instant espresso powder
  • ½ ts baking powder
  • ¼ ts baking soda
  • ¼ ts fine salt
  • 1 stick soft unsalted butter
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 room temperature egg
  • ½ c room temperature whole sour cream
  • 1 ts vanilla or peppermint extract
Topping:
  • 1 c melted bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 crushed candy canes
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, sift/whisk together the flour, cocoa, coffee, baking powder/soda, and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.
  3. Blend in the egg then the sour cream, and extract.
  4. In thirds, slowly combine the dry bowl with the second, wet bowl. Do not over mix.
  5. Chill the dough for 15-30 minutes, if time allows.
  6. Scoop and bake at 350 for 9-11 minutes. Cool completely.
  7. Slather melted chocolate onto the tops of each cookie and sprinkle with crushed peppermints.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster

Mini Pumpkin Pies

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I recently had the dilemma of transporting several pies to a holiday party and lo and behold 7 of said pies had apparently experienced a bit of turbulence and their delicate flaky crusts had crumbled.  The silver lining here was that I was able to hoard the buttery bits for myself, done in the spirit of concealing the evidence but mostly to satiate the crying “give it to meeee” in my head.  Also, 3 of the other pies were just fine but any way you look at it, the odds weren’t great.  From now on, I think I’ll make a safer journey with these mini pies that are itty bitty in size but bold in flavor.

 

 

 

{Homemade Pumpkin Spice}

5.0 from 5 reviews
Mini Pumpkin Pies
 
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Serves: 2 Dozen Minis
Ingredients
Crust
  • ⅔ c unbleached flour
  • ½ tb sugar
  • ¼ ts fine salt
  • 5 tb frozen butter, cubed/shredded
  • 1½ -2 tb ice water
Filling
  • 1 c homemade pumpkin puree
  • ½ ts pumpkin spice
  • ⅛ ts fine salt
  • ¼ c room temperature heavy cream
  • 1 room temperature egg
  • ½ ts pure vanilla extract
  • Optional: whipped cream and sprinkles
Instructions
  1. In a food processor, quickly pulse the flour, sugar, salt, and a bit of butter at a time until the mixture becomes crumbly. You don't want to over work this.
  2. After all the butter has been added, slowly tip in the tiniest bit of water at a time until the dough lumps together. Again, you don't want to over work the dough.
  3. Gather the dough into plastic and chill in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  4. For the filling, blend everything together until creamy and combined.
  5. Take out the crust about 10 minutes or so before rolling onto a lightly floured surface. Stamp out circles with a round cutter or simply cut them out rustically with a paring knife.
  6. In a lined mini cupcake tin, tuck the crusts onto each bottom and top with the filling.
  7. Bake at 350 for 9-12 minutes. Cool completely and top with whipped cream if desired.

I will be traveling from November 23rd-30th. Videos will resume the first week of December.  Happy Thanksgiving, loves!

Your Squishy Monster

Korean Potatoes 감자조림

 

I’ve expressed my love for the egg several times before but the humble potato comes in a close second.  It’s just so versatile and patient.  Weeks can go by and you won’t hear the potato grumbling to be used up or envious of your attentions elsewhere and when you need it, its applications are endless.  This potato side dish is something we had often growing up.  Traditionally, each Korean meal is eaten alongside several banchan or side dishes and this one is so no-fuss that it can be whipped up in virtually minutes and the  soy and honey do magical things as they glaze the veggies in a salty, caramelized crust.  It’s so delicious, I’ve also featured it on our Thanksgiving table as well and it’s always a winning dish!

 

 

 

 

5.0 from 3 reviews
Korean Potatoes 감자조림
 
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Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 yukon/russet potatoes, chopped
  • 1 tb sesame oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 tb soy sauce
  • 1 tb honey
  • S + p to taste
  • Sesame seeds/scallions for garnish
Instructions
  1. Glaze a pan with the oil and toss the potatoes until they're golden.
  2. Add the garlic and onions.
  3. When the potatoes are tender, add the soy and honey.
  4. Adjust with salt and pepper if needed.
  5. Garnish with sesame seeds and scallions.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster

Foolproof Gravy

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If you can master this simple technique, the options are endless when it comes to tailor-making gravy with a personalized touch for Thanksgiving supper {or anything that requires gravy–can that be everything, please?}  I love playing around with this depending on what mood strikes.  This can range from anything from thyme to cognac {my personal favorite additions}.

 

 

 

5.0 from 4 reviews
Foolproof Gravy
 
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Serves: 1 c gravy
Ingredients
  • ½ c unsalted butter {or your fat of choice}
  • ¼ c unbleached flour
  • 1½ c low sodium stock warm or at room temperature
  • S + P
Instructions
  1. Melt and brown the butter. Do this by setting your pan low and slow and keeping your eye on it. It can go from browned and aromatic to burned and bitter very quickly.
  2. Vigorously whisk in the flour a bit at a time all while simultaneously whisking.
  3. After a few minutes, slowly pour in the stock.
  4. Heat and stir until nicely thickened.
  5. Adjust seasonings as you go.

What’s your favorite addition to gravy?

Love,

Your Squishy Monster

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