We have been hoarding baking cookbooks for years but I knew exactly which one I wanted to work through first: Chrstina Tosi’s Momofuku Milk Bar Cookbook. She is a baking genius that matches expert techniques with the familiar flavors of the American South and our collective childhoods. Her recipes incorporate latch key cupboard staples such as Ritz Crackers, Fruity Pebbles, Funfetti Cake and Kellogg’s Cornflakes. Match these with familiar Southern favorites such as kitchen sink cookies (she calls them Compost Cookies) and Crack Pie (her version of Chess Pie) and you are on a trip down a delicious memory lane.
What follows is the first recipe I tried. I loved them and immediately made another batch to share with our friends. We took them to a New Year’s Eve party and not a single crumb was left at the end of the night. Proceed at your own risk…these are highly additive!
Kevin here. You would think we had a white Christmas in Florida by the looks of our kitchen – flour, confectioner’s and granulated sugar is everywhere. We have been wanting a Kitchen Aid mixer for years and finally got one for Christmas (thanks to our wonderful and generous parents; I mean Santa). The newness hasn’t worn off and I have been baking up a snow storm!
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup packed light-brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 cups Cornflake Crunch
- 2/3 cup mini chocolate chips
- 1 1/4 cups mini marshmallows
Cream together butter and both sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high, 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl and add egg and vanilla; beat for 7 to 8 minutes.
Reduce speed to low and add flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix just until dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl with a spatula.
With the mixer on low, add cornflake crunch and chocolate chips; mix until just combined, 30 to 45 seconds. Add mini marshmallows and mix until just incorporated.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a 2 3/4-ounce ice-cream scoop or 1/3-cup measuring cup, portion dough out onto prepared baking sheet. Pat tops of cookie domes flat. Wrap baking sheet tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 1 week. Do not bake cookies from room temperature or they will not hold their shape.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line additional baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mats.
Arrange chilled dough at least 4 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Transfer to oven and bake until puffed, cracked, spread, and browned on the edges, about 18 minutes. Let cool completely on baking sheets.
Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, and frozen for up to 1 month.
This recipe was made as a side for the 2014 annual family Christmas dinner with a bit of deception: we didn’t tell people that there was goat cheese in dish. We didn’t want people to dismiss the dish before giving it a chance…and it went over really well! The addition of goat cheese and nutmeg gives this dish a great nuance that I have not experienced before in a potato gratin.
This dish also gave Kevin and I an excuse to use our mandolin slicer which made prepping this dish so much quicker! We took the extra step of rinsing the slices to wash off the extra starch and then blotting the slices dry between two towels to avoid having a watery gratin. Most food processors have slicer attachments that could work or you could slice the potatoes by hand.
Nod to Cooking Light for this truly delicious and simple dish!
1 cup half-and-haf, divided
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
5 cups thinly sliced peeled Yukon gold potato (about 2 1/2 pounds)
Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine 2 tablespoons half-and-half with flour in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add the remaining half-and-half, cheese, and next 5 ingredients (cheese through garlic), stirring with a whisk. Arrange half of the potato slices in a single layer in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.
Pour half of the milk mixture over potato slices, stirring the milk mixture immediately before adding. Repeat procedure with remaining potato slices and milk mixture. Bake at 400° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender and golden brown.
Note: We ended up cooking this dish about 15 minutes longer to get that gorgeous golden brown color.
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ + ⅛ teaspoon fine salt
- 2 cups powdered sugar (adding more when needed)
- In a medium bowl, add the cream cheese and butter. Beat together with an electric mixer until fluffy, about 30 seconds.
- Slowly add the sugar to the cream cheese mixture while continuously beating. Beat the sugar into the cream cheese mixture until light and fluffy, 1 minute.
- Next, add the vanilla, whole egg, and egg yolk. Beat until combined.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add this to the cream cheese mixture in three increments, beating in between each addition.
- Chill the dough in the fridge for 1-2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 325-degrees, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Have the powdered sugar ready in a shallow bowl nearby.
8. Scoop out a heaping tablespoon of dough, with a 1 tablespoon ice-cream scooper (you can use a bigger one or a smaller one, just adjust placement on the cookie sheet as necessary). Drop scooped dough into bowl of powdered sugar and roll the dough into the powdered sugar before placing them evenly on the baking sheet. Make sure the dough is completely covered.
9. Bake for 16 minutes. Keep a close eye on these cookies–they should not brown in the oven. The top of the cookies will be puffed. Let the cookies cool completely on the baking sheet before serving.
Tips and changes:
- Bring the butter to near room temperature, the cream cheese needs to be close to that as well, doing this will allow the dough to mix much better.
- I adjusted the time in the fridge because I feel that the original 30 minutes is not enough to solidify the dough, especially when you make a double batch.
- Disregard the powdered sugar amount: just pour a lot of powdered sugar into a bowl and then scoop the dough into it and roll it around. Don’t bother rolling with your hands…it will be too tacky and besides, using an ice cream scooper will help make them all uniform.
- The cookies should not be brown, they should be golden, on the other hand, the cookies should not be undercooked either!
A couple of guys who like to cook!