S’Mores Cookie Cups

S'mores Cookie Cups | Pinky's Pantry
S’mores are a classic American camp out dessert. There’s nothing like roasting marshmallows over an open fire. It sure brings back memories of camping with my family up in Yosemite. Sadly, Old Goat Honey is just not the outdoorsy type and he hates camping so I never get to go anymore. But, no big deal. I created these cookies in response to that little obstacle. These cookies have all the flavor of traditional S’mores without any camping involved. Now I can honestly say that I don’t miss camping at all!

S’MORES COOKIE CUPS

[Makes about 36 cookies]

Graham Cracker Cookies:

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 can (14 ozs.) condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together graham cracker crumbs, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer, beat condensed milk and butter together until smooth.
  4. Reduce speed to low and gradually add dry ingredients to condensed milk mixture, beating until just combined.
  5. Spray wells of mini muffin pans with cooking spray.
  6. Fill each well with one tablespoon of cookie dough.
  7. Bake for 8 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool for 15 minutes or until cool enough to touch, then spin each cookie in its well to loosen it and make sure it isn’t stuck to the muffin pan.
  9. Set pans aside and let cookies cool completely in the pans.

Chocolate Ganache:

  • 4 ozs. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 6 Tbsp. heavy cream
  1. Place chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl.
  2. In a heavy saucepan, heat cream until just simmering.
  3. Pour hot cream over chocolate chips and let sit for a few minutes.
  4. Stir together with a rubber spatula until smooth.

To Assemble Cookies:

  • graham cracker cookie cups
  • chocolate ganache
  • 1 bag marshmallows
  1. Turn broiler on high.
  2. Transfer cookie cups to parchment lined cookie sheets. Arrange them so they’re about 1-inch apart because the marshmallows puff up when you broil them.
  3. Cut marshmallows in half with scissors dipped in flour. You’ll have to wash and dry the scissors after every few marshmallows or they get too sticky.
  4. Spread a little chocolate ganache on top of each cookie cup.
  5. Place a marshmallow half, cut side down, on top of each cookie cup.
  6. Broil until marshmallows are golden brown. Watch carefully so you don’t burn the marshmallows.

NOTE:

  • If any any of the cookies did happen to be a little too close to the one next to it so the marshmallow toppings touched and stuck to each other during baking, no worries. Just let the cookies cool completely. Then pull them slightly away from each other so you can see where to cut, and snip them apart with scissors dipped in flour.
  • I like to use jumbo campfire marshmallows. I snip them horizontally into three pieces because I think half is too much, then I use the top and bottom halves, placing them cut side down on top of each cookie. I save the center portion of the marshmallows to make rice crispy treats or to float on top of hot cocoa.
  • You could also use mini marshmallows and arrange them on top of each cookie to resemble a flower shape.

Dulce de Leche Bars

Dulce de Leche Squares | Pinky's Pantry
I love dulce de leche. It’s so delicious, I can eat it by the spoonful! I thought it would be fun to make some kind of bars with dulce de leche in them. So I made up this recipe with a blondie base and ready-made dulce de leche. It turned out great! The kids loved them. I’ll definitely be making these again!
Dulce de Leche Squares | Pinky's Pantry

DULCE DE LECHE BARS

  • 1½ cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1 can (13.4 ozs.) dulce de leche (or you can make your own)
  • ¼ cup evaporated milk (can substitute fresh milk)
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a 9×13 baking pan with foil and grease foil lightly.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, melt butter in microwave.
  4. To melted butter, add brown sugar, eggs, vanilla and nuts, stirring to combine.
  5.  Add flour mixture to butter mixture, mixing together well. Batter will be thick.
  6. Reserve 1 cup of the batter and set aside.
  7. Spread remaining batter into prepared pan. It will seem like you don’t have enough batter to completely cover the bottom of the pan, but just do your best, spreading as thinly as you need to.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes.
  9. While bottom crust is baking, empty dulce de leche into a bowl and add milk.
  10. Microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after every 30 seconds, until dulce de leche is completely combined with milk and is soft and pourable.
  11. Remove cooked crust from oven and pour dulce de leche over crust, spreading to within ¼-inch of edges.
  12. Drop spoonfuls of reserved 1 cup batter randomly over dulce de leche layer.
  13. Cut through batter and dulce with a knife to create a marbled effect.
  14. Return to oven and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until set.
  15. Cool on wire rack, then lift foil from pan to remove.
  16. Cut into bars or squares.

Sweet and Saltines

Sweet and Saltines | Pinky's PantryThis strange sounding recipe is one of Trisha Yearwood’s. I watched her make it on TV and immediately rushed to the kitchen to try making it myself. O-M-G!!! It was sooo good! The family loved it! Such an unusual recipe and surprisingly yummy! And the best part…. it was super easy to make. You’ve just got to try this one.

SWEET AND SALTINES

  • 35 to 40 saltine crackers
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 8 ozs. semisweet chocolate chips (about 1⅓ cups)
  1. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. Line 1 large or 2 small jelly­roll pans with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. Arrange the saltines salt­ side down in a single layer.
  4. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar together and boil for a few minutes until it turns a caramel color.
  5. Remove from heat and pour over the crackers, covering them evenly.
  6. Put the jelly­roll pan into the oven and bake for 3 to 5 minutes, or until just bubbly, watching carefully so as not to burn.
  7. Remove from oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips over the crackers.
    Sweet and Saltines | Pinky's Pantry
  8. Wait a minute or so and when the heat melts the chips a bit, spread the chocolate over the crackers with a knife or an offset spatula.
    Sweet and Saltines | Pinky's Pantry
  9. Place the pan in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until completely cold. They will form one solid sheet.
    Sweet and Saltines | Pinky's Pantry
  10. Break up into pieces.
    Sweet and Saltines | Pinky's Pantry
  11. Store in an airtight container. That is…… assuming you have any left to store!

Snowman Hat Cookies

Snowman Hats | Pinky's Pantry
These are just the cutest little cookies and are perfect for a Christmas buffet table or for taking to a Christmas cookie exchange. With only a handful of ingredients, they’re so easy to put together. The little sprinkles add the crowning touch that makes them absolutely adorable!
Snowman Hats | Pinky's Pantry

SNOWMAN HAT COOKIES

  • Oreo fudge creme cookies
  • marshmallows
  • chocolate chips
  • green christmas tree sprinkles
  • red dot sprinkles
  1. Melt about half a cup of chocolate chips in a small bowl in the microwave.
    NOTE:  Chocolate will cool while you’re working and will start to harden as it cools. Just re-heat in microwave for 30 seconds or so to re-melt.
  2. Lightly dip just the very bottom of a marshmallow into the melted chocolate.
  3. Press the marshmallow on top of an Oreo cookie and allow chocolate to set.
  4. Dip the top of the marshmallow into the melted chocolate leaving a white band between the oreo and the chocolate.
  5. Set aside to dry.
  6. Put a tiny dab of chocolate behind a christmas tree sprinkle and 3 red dot sprinkles and “glue” to white band on hat to resemble holly.

Coconut Macaroons

Coconut Macaroons | Pinky's Pantry
Casa Catastrophe sure is quiet today. I remember when the kids were little, a quiet house meant you’d better go investigate because they were probably up to no good. I’ll never forget the day the silence led me to find No. 1 creating a whole artistic mural on the underside of our dining table with his crayons and markers. Yes, his work of art still exists to this day. You just need to crawl under the table to see it.

Or the day I caught Yissi quietly sprinkling “pixie dust” all over the kitchen (and herself) with the flour I had just brought home from the grocery store. Looking back, I wish I had taken a picture of her standing in the middle of the kitchen blinking innocently up at me with everything covered in white powder. Even her eyebrows and eyelashes! It was pretty funny. Of course at the time, the last thing I felt like doing was laughing, let alone going for the camera. It took me an hour to clean up the mess!

Then there was the day that Tissi decided she and Rory (her favorite stuffed toy lion) both needed haircuts. Luckily for her, I caught her right as she had just started on herself so she only had to walk around for the next few weeks with an inch-long patch sticking out of the top left side of her head like a little off-center mohawk. Unfortunately for Rory, he wasn’t so lucky and to this day he indignantly sports an uneven buzz cut where once resided an impressive lion’s mane.

Oh, and who can forget the time that Spunky, who was supposed to be eating her grilled cheese sandwich, thought she would feed it to the VCR instead. A fact we didn’t find out till we tried to stick in our latest Blockbuster Video rental that night! I wondered how she had managed to finish her lunch so quickly. I mean, I was only gone long enough to warm up some milk in the microwave and pour it into her little sippy cup! Poor Old Goat had to take apart the VCR to get all the melted cheese cleaned out of it.

Today, Casa Catastrophe is all quiet once again. But my investigations found Yissi chatting with her friends online, Tissi reading a book, Bashful drawing on her laptop, Spunky experimenting with her makeup, and No. 1 gone on a date with his girlfriend. The kids are all grown up now so I guess a quiet house no longer means the same alarming thing it used to. But I miss the noise anyway.

Well I guess I should take advantage of the peace and quiet while it’s here. And there’s no better way to enjoy peace and quiet than in a comfortable chair with a good book, a nice hot cup of tea, and a little plate of coconut macaroons by your side.
Coconut Macaroons | Pinky's Pantry

COCONUT MACAROONS

  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • 1 can (14-oz) condensed milk
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups desiccated coconut
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line about 36 mini muffin cups with baking paper liners.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, melt butter in the microwave.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix together well.
  4. Spoon mixture into prepared cups, filling them just about 3/4 full.
  5. Bake for 12 minutes or until the top surface starts to brown lightly at the edges.

NOTE:  These macaroons get better as they age so bake them a day or two before you serve them. Store in an airtight container at room temperature with wax paper between the layers for up to one week. May be frozen for up to 2 months. Thaw frozen macaroons overnight before serving.