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.
This is my one year anniversary of being a member of Daring Bakers: time flies. I have vastly enjoyed being a member of this amazing group, although some of the challenges were more fun than the others ;)
I have always thought these cookies were called Milano, but I guess Milan is also an acceptable name for them.
I invited my friend Theresa to come over and help me make these. Let's just say it took us several attempts to figure out how to pipe these out: I wanted them to be round instead of oval, and we got a few that were perfectly shaped...others weren't so much. Still, we managed to match them up. The best part was decorating these cookies. Of course I chose dark chocolate, and also decided to use pistachio nuts to add a bit of crunch and saltiness. Pistachios went great with the richness of the cookie and the slight bitterness of dark chocolate.
Milan Cookies Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website
Prep Time: 20 min
Serves: about 3 dozen cookies (I actually halved the cookie recipe, but made full recipe of chocolate filling!)
• 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter, softened
• 2 1/2 cups (312.5 grams/ 11.02 oz) powdered sugar
• 7/8 cup egg whites (from about 6 eggs)• 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
• 2 tablespoons lemon extract
• 1 1/2 cups (187.5grams/ 6.61 oz) all purpose flour
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 8 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (I just used chocolate chips, so no need to chop!)
• 1 orange, zested
Optional: pistachio nuts, chopped
1. In a mixer with paddle attachment cream the butter and the sugar. (I just used my hand-held mixer.)
2. Add the egg whites gradually and then mix in the vanilla and lemon extracts.
3. Add the flour and mix until just well mixed.
4. With a small (1/4-inch) plain tip, pipe 1-inch sections of batter onto a parchment-lined sheet pan, spacing them 2 inches apart as they spread.
5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Let cool on the pan.
6. While waiting for the cookies to cool, in a small saucepan over medium flame, scald cream.
7. Pour hot cream over chocolate in a bowl, whisk to melt chocolate, add zest and blend well.
8. Set aside to cool (the mixture will thicken as it cools).
9. Spread a thin amount of the filling onto the flat side of a cookie while the filling is still soft and press the flat side of a second cookie on top.
10. Repeat with the remainder of the cookies.
11. Optional: spread a bit more chocolate on top of the cookies and add chopped pistachio on top. Or just drizzle with the chocolate filling (I put mine into a plastic bag and just snipped a little piece of the corner off.)
I doubt I'll ever make these again (it is so much easier to just buy them at the store), but they definitely did not disappoint!