Last week I had a bit of a groan about how bad I was, spending my evenings wasting time on the internet. I must say I have much improved since enforcing my evening internet curfew: I've finished both the front and back of the Tyger's cardigan, and gotten lotsa lotsa sleep. Yay! Go me!
But the internet is also a pretty darn awesome entity (try and keep me off it during daylight hours!). For example, when I first started using it, there were very few crafty blogs or websites. But there was MarthaStewart.com. Now, you can say what you like about Martha, but you can't deny the lady runs a pretty impressive ship. It's so good, and so far reaching that during my Christmas beach holiday of 2005, as I was cruising the aisles of the Aireys Inlet newsagency, I happened to chance upon an issue of Holiday Cookies, published by MS. "Ooooh!" I thought delightedly. "A Martha Stewart magazine! Here in sleepy Aireys Inlet. And it contains nothing but cookies! This surely will be a keeper!"
And it was, and has been ever since. Whenever I am in need of some biscuit inspiration, that trusty mag is still the first thing I turn to. But if it hadn't been for the wonders of the internet I wouldn't have known who Martha Stewart was. I probably wouldn't have let the magazine catch my eye, hidden as it was amongst all the other titles. I certainly wasn't looking for it - you don't expect to find incredible food magazines in the newsagencies of beachy country towns. And I wouldn't be enjoying these so-bad-but-so-so-good Surprise Cookies.
So thanks Martha, and the internet! And trust me when I say these cookies are good. They are so good you will keep gobbling them, even as you feel your teeth start to drop out from all the sugar. They are so good you may even renounce your Aussie citizenship, and embrace wholeheartedly all things American and marmallowy. They are so good that when you check the pantry pre-grocery store trip to see if you require any more rolled oats for porridge, you really are scanning to make sure you have enough cocoa and sugar and vanilla extract for your next batch.
For the cookies:
1 3/4 cups plain flour
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp coarse salt
115g butter, softened
1 cup caster sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
about 15 marshmallows, halved crosswise
For the frosting (or icing as we call it here):
3 cups pure icing sugar
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup whole milk
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 - To make the cookies: Preheat the oven to 170 C. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl, then set aside. Put the butter and sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on a medium high speed until pale and fluffy. Reduce the speed to medium, and mix in the egg, milk and vanilla. Mix in the flour mixture slowly, until all combined.
2 - Using a tablespoon, drop generous spoonfuls of the dough onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. Bake the cookies for about 8 minutes. Take out of the oven, press a marshmallow onto the centre of each cookie, then put back in the oven for another 2 minutes, or until the marshmallow has melted. Let cool on a wire rack.
3 - To make the frosting: Put the icing sugar in a medium bowl. Set aside. Melt the butter with the cocoa powder in a small saucepan over a medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Add the butter mixture to the icing sugar. Whisk in the milk and vanilla. Spread about a tablespoon of the mixture onto the top of each cookie, covering the marshmallow. Let stand until set, about 10 minutes.
Makes about 30.
>> Tuesday, November 29, 2011 – Food glorious food