Am I alone in my love-hate relationship with summertime s’mores? Don’t get me wrong, they are amazing. However, my consumption bliss is short-lived as I try to corral 30 sticky fingers covered in s’more fall-outs before they touch the dog, play in the sandbox, or use my shirt as a napkin. The kids may as well be wrapped in fly-paper for the amount of miscellaneous materials they pick up after they eat their s’mores. That is why I am thrilled we developed the S’more Star Cookies in the Test Kitchen. Not only is this a tidy version of the summertime treat, but better yet, we can enjoy them all year long! If you are looking to try something new on your Christmas cookie tray or want to add some stars to your 4th of July stripes, this cookie can morph into any theme and delivers the flavors we all know and love.
Let’s start with the graham cracker cookie base. You know the drill – cream your butter and sugar, then add your egg, honey and vanilla. Next, add your remaining dry ingredients and beat at low speed until well-mixed.
Since this is a roll-out cookie, chill the dough before cutting out the stars, or your dough will be too soft to work with. We recommend dividing the dough in half before flattening into two disks. Then wrap the disks in plastic food wrap before chilling for 2 hours in the refrigerator.
Working with one disk at a time, remove from the refrigerator and roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 ½-inch star-shaped cookie cutter, cut out star shapes and place on to prepared cookie sheet. Bake at 350°F for 7-8 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack.
While the cookies are cooling, brown butter for the fondant. Browning the butter helps add a “toasted marshmallow” flavor to the fondant. To brown the butter, melt 1/4 cup butter in 1-quart saucepan over medium heat. Continue cooking, stirring constantly and watching closely, 6-8 minutes. Don’t panic when the butter gets foamy; this is supposed to happen! As soon as the butter starts to turn a golden hue, remove it from the heat immediately, transfer to another bowl, and set it aside.
Next, combine marshmallows and water in a separate bowl. Microwave 1½ minutes, stirring every 30 seconds until the marshmallows are melted and smooth. Add powdered sugar and browned butter to the melted marshmallows.
Then, with buttered hands, mix until the ingredients are combined. Now for the fun part: knead the fondant until it is smooth. Also, for those fondant-haters out there – don’t knock it until you try it. This fondant is insanely tasty and addictive.
Roll out the fondant on a surface lightly dusted with powdered sugar to 1/8-inch thickness. (No, you cannot substitute flour for powdered sugar here.) Cut the fondant into stars using the same 2½ -inch star cookie cutter. Additionally, cut the center of each 2½ -inch fondant star with a 1½-inch star cookie cutter. This way you can mix up the fondant patterns you place on your cookies.
Last, but not least, the chocolate. Place the chocolate chips in a bowl and microwave for 1 minute, stirring every 30 seconds, until the chips are melted and smooth. In this recipe the melted chocolate acts as the “glue” that will hold our toasted marshmallow fondant to the cookie. Spread chocolate evenly onto cookies, and then top with a marshmallow fondant star. Now you are ready to share and enjoy the s’mores you made indoors!
Don’t worry, I am not going to deprive my kids of the summertime ritual of a campfire and s’mores. I still plan to wipe melted marshmallows out of eyebrows and clear graham cracker crumbs out of ears for years to come. But it is nice to know that there is a neat, yet just-as-delicious, alternative out there that I can turn to any time of year. I know it will look great on my Christmas cookie tray, and I can’t wait to share them again in the summer on those rainy days when campfires are not an option.
Let us know how you choose to share your S’more Star Cookies!