A few weeks ago I was flipping through my Garden & Gun when I came across this great Moon Pie recipe! When it comes to sweets Moon Pies take the southern cake! Almost every little boy and girl born below the Mason Dixon line has savored this marshmallowy sweet treat. Getting this one under my belt was an absolute MUST! Feeling a little intimidated I read through the instructions thoroughly and realized this recipe had a few more steps and required a bit more patience than any other cookie I had worked with before. It should have come as no surprise that this famous cookie was going to take some time. With Valentine's Day just around the corner I chose to use a heart shaped cookie cutter. The end result was a cookie that was a fun surprise and received rave reviews. Be sure to read through the instructions before you begin. I would even recommend reading them twice. For some reason with this recipe you have lots of extra marshmallow filling. If you would like to make 24 cookies you only need to make 2 batches of dough and double your chocolate coating. The Garden & Gun recipe was fairly nondescript in certain areas, so I added a few steps that I felt were necessary for you to create a great cookie. Hope you enjoy! Bubba gave these cookies two thumbs up!
Sweet Heart Moon Pies
Yields: 12 Cookies
6 oz unsalted butter (at room temperature)
1/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup Steen's cane syrup (I substituted with 1/2 honey and 1/2 dark corn syrup)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs, ground fine
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons whole milk
This requires a candy thermometer
4 teaspoons powdered gelatin
1/2 cup water, ice cold, plus 1/4 cup at room temperature
4 tablespoons light corn syrup
3 tablespoons honey (clover or wildflower)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large grade A egg whites
1 lb. bittersweet chocolate (61% - 70% cacao)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil or canola oil
Cream butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, for 1 minute. Add in syrup and vanilla and mix for another minute. In a separate bowl, combine flour, graham cracker crumbs, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon. Mix with a fork until combined. Slowly add dry ingredients to butter mixture while alternately adding in milk and mix on low speed. Be sure to stop and scrape the sides of your bowl. Continue to mix until dough comes together.
Remove bowl from mixer and, using your hands, bring dough together and shape into a ball. Press flat and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
Preheat oven to 325°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Turn out chilled dough onto a flour-dusted surface. Be sure to sprinkle a little flour on the top of your dough before rolling. Roll out your dough until it's 1/4 inch thick. Stamp out your cookies using a 3 inch round cookie cutter or shape of choice. (Be sure to stay close in size if you want to get 12 cookies out of your batch). Place cookies on baking sheet and bake for 10 - 12 minutes. Once they are baked transfer them to a rack to cool. This is when you'll start your marshmallow.
Sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup ice-cold water, give a gentle stir, and set aside.
Combine 1/4 cup room temperature water, corn syrup, honey, and sugar in a small pot, insert candy thermometer, and simmer until mixture reaches 240°. Continuously stir so that sugar doesn't burn on the bottom. When the thermometer reaches 200° -but not before- place egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, and whip on high.
Once the sugar mixture hits 240°, remove it from heat, and stir in the bloomed gelatin. Then, while egg whites are whipping, slowly drizzle the hot sugar mixture down the inside of the bowl to avoid spattering the hot syrup. Continue whipping for an additional 8 minutes, until the mixture stiffens.
Flip over half of the cooled cookies. Lightly coat a spoon with nonstick cooking spray, and spoon approximately a quarter cup of marshmallow onto each flipped cookie. Use the remaining cookies as tops; gently push down until you can see the marshmallow come just to the edge. Don't worry, if it comes past the edge just trim the marshmallow with a butter knife. Place cookies in the refrigerator to chill for at least 15 minutes. Now you will make the chocolate coating.
Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a small saucepan of simmering water. (If you're like me and have to improvise.... just take a large pot, fill almost half way with water, set medium pot inside large pot and set over medium heat.) Stir until chocolate has melted, then remove bowl from heat and let it cool slightly. Once the chocolate is no longer hot, but warm, slowly whisk in oil in a steady stream. Allow chocolate to cool at room temperature for about 5 minutes before proceeding with assembly.
Set up your cooling rack and be sure to line underneath with parchment paper. Submerge chilled cookies in the chocolate. Use a spoon to flip cookie and cover any exposed areas with chocolate. Using two forks, gently lift the sandwiches out of the bowl and set onto cooling rack. Let stand until shell hardens.