"You've got chocolate boobs" my friends says matter of factly. I look down, puzzled at her comment. No, they seem perfectly normal. "No look, you made some here" she says pointing at what I believe to be heart shaped biscuits. I follow her accusing French Polished finger and see that despite my best efforts to produce some elegant little heart shaped biscuits dotted with 23 karat Gold Leaf, I see that I have in fact made some chocolate boobs.
Thus begins my story with this month's Daring Baker's challenge. The July Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Nicole at Sweet Tooth. She chose Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milan Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network. Due to time constraints and the fact that I am co-hosting August's Daring Bakers challenge I just made the Chocolate Mallow Biscuits. Truth be told, I'm not a huge fan of Chocolate Mallow Biscuits. They're just not to my taste and texture but I knew that everyone else around me would love them so being the people pleaser that I am, I got to work. Frantically in between huge gaps and pauses. There are three parts to this recipe and each requires some hours waiting in between.
The recipe was very straightforward and easy if you have the time to wait. I wanted to make them a bit more elegant so I bought some edible 23 karat gold leaf as I had seen truffles decorated similarly and always thought that they looked lovely. If you've ever worked with gold leaf before you'll know how flyaway and paper thin the sheets are, how fiddly they are to work with and how much it likes to stick to your skin. I got my trusty Tweezermans out and prised little pieces off and dotted the top. I like to think that they look elegant. But then again I have friends that think they look like boobs. "You could drape some more Gold Leaf and make a Gold bikini top for them!" my friend says chuckling and I have to admit I considered the idea...
I also made larger round ones but when I put them next to each other, I think you can guess what my friend said.
So tell me Dear Reader, have you ever thought that you were ever totally misinterpreted?
Chocolate Marshmallow Biscuits with Gold Leaf
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website
Prep Time: 10 min
Inactive Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Serves: about 2 dozen cookies
3 cups (375grams/13.23oz) all purpose flour
1/2 cup (112.5grams/3.97oz) white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter
3 eggs, whisked together
Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows
Chocolate glaze, recipe follows
1 sheet of Gold leaf to decorate and gold lustre dust to sprinkle
Step 1 - In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.
Step 2 - On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.
Step 3 - Add the eggs and mix until combine.
Step 4 - Form the dough into a disk, wrap with clingfilm or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
Step 5 - When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
Step 6 - Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Step 7 - Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.
See, just hearts, no boobs at all!
Step 8 - Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.
OK now I'm seeing boobs...
Step 9 - Pipe a kiss of marshmallow onto each cookie. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.
Step 10 - Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.
Step 11 - One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze.
Step 12 - Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl. With tweezers, tear off small pieces of the gold leaf and adhere to the chocolate while still wet.
Step 13 - Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.
Step 14 - Once totally set, dust the top of the biscuits with gold lustre dust.
Note: if you dont want to make your own marshmallows, you can cut a large marshmallow in half and place on the cookie base. Heat in a preheated 350-degree oven to slump the marshmallow slightly, it will expand and brown a little. Let cool, then proceed with the chocolate dipping.
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup light corn syrup
3/4 cup (168.76 grams/5.95oz) sugar
1 tablespoon powdered gelatin and 2 tablespoons cold water or 1 sheet leaf gelatine and a small bowl of cold water
2 egg whites , room temperature
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Step 1 - In a saucepan, combine the water, corn syrup, and sugar, bring to a boil until soft-ball stage, or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Step 2 - Sprinkle the powdered gelatin over the cold water and let dissolve or soak. Or if using leaf gelatine, soak in a small bowl of cold water until soft.
Step 3 - Remove the syrup from the heat, add the gelatin, and mix.
Step 4 - Whip the whites until soft peaks form and pour the syrup into the whites.
Step 5 - Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.
Step 6 - Transfer to a pastry bag.
12 ounces/360grams semisweet chocolate
2 ounces/60g cocoa butter or vegetable oil
Step 1 - Melt the 2 ingredients together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water.