i’ve been dreaming about this recipe for the longest time, but just recently did i finally have the courage to do it. it’s been a long few weeks in the recipe development area over here – i’ve had three other recipes just not work out and while i do plan on trying it again, i just needed a break from those specific recipe testing. i decided to go back to a recipe idea i saw on an episode of unique sweets; it was a marshmallow shop in tennessee and one of their menu options was an orange and sesame marshmallow sugar cookie sandwich.
i loved the idea that it was a bit of a twist on the (american) chinese food dish of orange chicken and wanted to try and recreate it – did i? i don’t know i’ve never been to the shop and was only able to go off of what the show portrayed, but i’m still exceptionally happy with the outcome.
in terms of taste – thankfully – it doesn’t take like orange and sesame chicken – lord that would be disgusting; but the flavors did differ amongst the people i had try it. i found it to have a nutty and fruity taste, a friend of mine found it to be like licorice (maybe it was the vanilla sesame sugar i rolled it in as well?) and another just said “it’s good. i like it!” – so the overall consensus was that while the flavors weren’t easy to pinpoint, it did at least taste good.
one of the main reasons i love this recipe so much was the ease of it especially throughout the day. i was working from home that day, which i love, so it afforded me time to actually take my time and really enjoy the process, which is something that i don’t do enough since i try to get all my shit done – recipe test, recipe finalization, picture taking, editing, writing out the final recipe, writing the post, everything – all in two days. i sometimes forget that i enjoy doing this since it does actually feels like work after working all week.
this time since i was technically working and not everything needed my undivided attention, i was able to make this recipe in between emails, phone calls and scheduling. it seemed to flow so natural like it’s something i should do often – i don’t know if i could, but it was a great day – i even had time to leave for a meeting, come back take pictures and still relax for the remainder of my free day. i’m sure this has made me love this recipe even more, a sort of placebo effect since i had been struggling for the last little bit.
i think i want to keep this post just like that day – efficient – i left the majority of the helpful hints and suggestions in the actual recipe below as well as some witty banter. i just really enjoyed this day.
*although it wouldn’t be a real post if something wasn’t astray – my camera decided to act like a dick and had this grey-ish dot in every single picture. i cleaned the lenses and still that booger was there. eventually when i found different lightly i managed to make it a bit obscure, but of course i googled the shit out of what that dot could have been – i needed to clean my sensor, i called a camera shop to see how much it would cost and those goons told me $400 – da fuq! – i google how to clean a sensor and managed to do it in my house, naked as the day i was born fresh out the show in under 30 seconds for muthafuckkin’ free!* see this whole day was amazing!
SESAME SEEDS + ORANGE MARSHMALLOW COOKIE SANDWICHES
Orange Sesame Cookies
2 3/4 c. |385 g| flour
1 tsp. |7 g| baking soda
1/2 tsp. |4 g| fine sea salt
1 1/4 c. |280 g| softened butter
2 c. |400 g| sugar
2 eggs |100 g|
1 tsp. |5 g| vanilla paste
2 tbsp. |9 g| sesame seeds
Zest of 1 orange
1/4 c. |77 g| sesame sugar (1/4 c. |50 g| sugar + 3 tbsp. |27 g| toasted sesame seeds
2 tbsp. (18.5 g) unflavored gelatin
1 c. (225 g) cold water
1 c. (200 g) granulated sugar
1/2 c. (150 g) light corn syrup
1/8 tsp. (1 g) fine sea salt
zest of 2 oranges
Small Ice Cream/Cookie Scoop
Candy Thermometer (can find here)
Piping Bag (optional) (can find here)
1M Open Star Tip (optional) (can find here)
Preheat oven to 350F/175C. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, and salt; stir and set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, vanilla, orange zest, followed by the sesame seeds. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until amalgamated. Because you want all your cookies to be the same size, you want to use a cookie/ice cream scoop for best results. Place cookies 2 inches apart onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes in the preheated oven, until lightly browned at the edges. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. You want to cook all the cookies before starting your marshmallows, as the mallows will firm up too quickly to wait for more cookies to be baked.
Place 1/2 cup of cold water in a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over it and stir to combine. Set aside to soften. Place remaining 1/2 cup of water, sugar, light corn syrup, and salt in a medium size saucepan and stir with heatproof spatula to combine.
Bring the mixture to a boil, without stirring, over medium-high (maximum right smack in the middle of 6 and 7 on a numbered stove) heat. Then insert the candy thermometer and cook, uncovered until it reaches 250°f/121°c, about 10 – 15 minutes. After temperature has been reached, remove pan from heat, remove your thermometer and add your gelatin and stir it quickly. Pour your mixture into your heat safe bowl and begin to mix it starting on low and slowly working your way to medium high on your hand mixer beating until the mixture is white, thick and almost tripled in volume and your once hot metal bowl will have cooled, about 10 to 15 minutes, then add your orange zest. The marshmallow will be extremely thick, so after a while it may be a bit hard to mix but your bowl will still be a bit warm, this is normal, just lower the speed on your hand mixer and move dawdling through your mallow mixture. You want it to be this thick that way it keeps its shape when your pipe it onto your cookies.
Once your mallow is done, take a piping bag and a medium to large size tip of your choice – I used a Wilton 1M Open Star Tip – helpful hint: after inserting my tip into my bag (yes I know how that sounds) I fold the bottom of the piping bag and use a clip to keep it closed on the bottom and put the bag in a larger cup and fold the edges over the cup to minimize mess and maximize ease with putting the marshmallow into the piping bag – if you don’t want to pip it then using a small ice cream scoop will do as well. You may want to lightly oil your spoon to prevent sticking.
Pipe (or scoop) your mallow on a cookie and then top it with another cookie, because you used a cookie scoop they should all be the same size. If you’re piping you want to slowly start from the middle and pipe to the outside while rotating the cookie/ using an ice cream/cookie scoop then add the mallow to the middle of the cookie and use another cookie to sandwich it and let it evenly disperse.
If you want to be a bit extra – melting some white chocolate with a dab of butter to prevent burning and drizzle it on some or all of the cookies is also an option! (Microwave your white chocolate chips and sliver of butter in 10 second intervals in your microwave, stirring after each time, when its nearly completely melted, continue to stir it until all the other little bits of chocolate have melted on their own and then drizzle it over the cookies.)