May 8, 2013

Browned Butter Toffee Whoopie Pies

With Biscoff Marshmallow Filling

Umm, you guys. This recipe, it's kind of fancy. Like super fancy. Like you might find it in a super chic uptown bakery fancy. But, it's whoopie pies, which are rustic and imperfectly perfect. And they have whole wheat flour which makes them homey and satisfying.

It's like a paradox. It shouldn't exist. But it does, and it's good.

Paradoxes are tasty.
I'm not exactly sure where the inspiration for these came from. I think it started because I didn't feel like softening butter, so I decided to brown it. Necessity is not the mother of invention, laziness is.

I'd had a jar of Biscoff spread in the pantry forever, since I kept swearing I would use it for something. I thought it would go well with the browned butter. I think that's what decided me on whoopie pies, the Biscoff filling idea.

Then I had some toffee bits in the freezer (I keep them in there so they don't go rancid) and some whole wheat flour, and I decided to throw them in there. Because I could.

And then I was super paranoid about them spreading too thin, so I used brown sugar and shortening to try and keep them fluffy. They were still thinner and chewier than I usually feel a whoopie pie should be, but they were too cakey to classify as cookies. (Next time I might also try some buttermilk instead of the milk, but I was too worried about the flavor to do it this time)

And together, that made fancy whoopie pies.
Also, did you know, if you mix together Fluff and Biscoff spread and powdered sugar, it turns solid? Well, not solid solid, but like those little foam beads inside bean bag chairs. It was weirdly fascinating. And when I added some cream to soften it up, it turned into a Gak-like substance. So I added in some shortening to sort of smooth it out. It was still super thick, but I was able to spread it on the whoopie pies. I kind of felt like a mad scientist. Mwahahahahahaha.

But they won't make you feel like a mad scientist. They'll make you feel fancy.

Browned Butter Toffee Whoopie Pies
Yield: 12 whoopie pies (24 individual cakes)

6 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
4 tbsp. solid white vegetable shortening (Crisco)
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup toffee bits

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the butter turns a light golden brown. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Using electric beaters, beat the sugar and shortening on medium speed until well blended. Add the egg and vanilla, beating well after each addition. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Fold about half the flour mixture into the sugar mixture. Add the browned butter and milk. Add the rest of the flour and mix until fully incorporated. Fold in the toffee bits.

On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, drop the batter by the tablespoonful, leaving at least 2 inches between each. Bake about 10 minutes, or until the tops spring back when lightly pressed. Allow to cool on the pan for about 5 minutes, before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe by Kim

Biscoff Marshmallow Filling

1/2 cup Biscoff spread
1/2 cup Marshmallow Fluff (or comparable marshmallow creme)
2 tbsp. solid white vegetable shortening (Crisco)
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Using electric beaters, beat the Biscoff spread, Fluff, and shortening together at low speed. Gradually add in the powdered sugar, mixing until well blended. Add the cream, and mix on low until just combined, then increase the speed to high and beat until thick and smooth.

Recipe by Kim