Alfajore Moon Pies

Alfajore Moon Pies

Quirk Books contacted me a while back about participating in Marsh Madness to celebrate Shauna Sever’s new cookbook release, Marshmallow Madness. And I jumped all over it.

Because it combines two things that are quite dear to me: Tourney-style brackets in March. And dessert.

Marsh Madness

Everyone wins! Totally unlike the office pot where the intern who makes her Final 4 picks based on uniform color and point guard hotness manages to take everyone’s money. (I knock it like it hasn’t proved to be a winning strategy.)

Shauna’s new book is 90+ pages devoted to the sweet and sticky art of homemade marshmallow. Interested in making marshmallows? Marshmallow Madness is more than a cookbook, it’s a great resource full of marshmallow-making tips, tools, troubleshooting, and dozens of recipes and suggested variations.

And once you make your own, you’ll be quite disappointed when you have to turn back to the store bought variety. Believe me. I know.

The challenge from Quirk Books and Serious Eats to 16 bloggers was simple enough: take Shauna’s Classic Vanilla Marshmallow recipe and modify it into… whatever we wanted.

I know what you’re thinking. And I assure you, I went there. Even before the book arrived at my doorstep, I went there. I flipped passed Maple Bacon, Concord Grape, and Chocolate Malt to find that, yes, Shauna already had a Margarita Marshmallow recipe! And here I thought I was being so clever :)

Alfajore Moon Pies

I decided to merge two beloved treats: the alfajore, a dulce de leche-filled sandwich cookie, and the Southern (and a personal childhood) favorite, the Moon Pie.

I modified the Classic Vanilla Marshmallow into a Dulce de Leche Marshmallow. And I modified my favorite shortbread cookie recipe to more closely mimic the texture of traditional alfajore cookies. Alone, the “marshmallow alfajores” are a tender and buttery vanilla bean sandwich cookie spiked with plenty of vanilla and caramel notes. But after being dunked in chocolate? You get an incredibly fancy, homemade moon pie at which, let’s be honest, my 8-year-old-self would have totally turned up her nose.

Alfajore Moon Pies

So that’s me and my “Alfajore Moon Pies” hanging out at the bottom of the Southwest Bracket. If you’re following along on Twitter, check out #marshmadness to follow the entrants’ creations from rest of The Sweet 16.

Quirk Books has also provided an extra copy for a lucky reader. Want it?

Update: JoVonn is the winner with comment #8. Congratulations!

Leave a comment below with the answer to this question: What’s your favorite food that incorporates marshmallows?

The fine print:
– Maximum of one comment per person.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm (Texas time!) on Wednesday night.
– Winner will be selected by one of those cold, soulless, unfeeling random number generator thingies and announced on this post after selected.
– Winner will receive a copy of Marshmallow Madness by Shauna Sever (maximum total retail value of prize = $20).
– Prize must be claimed within 7 days or it will be forfeited and an alternate winner selected.
– Prize can only be shipped to a US address.
– Official giveaway rules can be found here.

Good luck!

Alfajore Moon Pies

Homemade dulce de Leche marshmallow and vanilla bean shortbread take the moon pie to a new level.

Ingredients

  • For the cookies:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • For the dulce de leche marshmallow:
  • 1 envelope (~2 1/2 tsp) unflavored gelatin
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 3/8 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup dulce de leche (purchased or homemade)
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • For the chocolate coating:
  • 6 oz semisweet chocolate
  • 2 tsp shortening

Instructions

  1. To make the cookies, cream the butter and powdered sugar together on medium-high for 2-3 minutes, until fluffy. If you start with cold butter like I do, 3-4 minutes.
  2. Reduce speed to low and add the extract and the scrapings of the vanilla pod.
  3. Add flour, cornstarch, and baking powder, and mix on medium just until the dry ingredients are completely incorporated.
  4. Turn dough out onto plastic wrap, shape into a disc, wrap tightly, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  5. Lightly flour your work surface and roll out your dough (it's easier for me to divide it into 2 portions first) to ~1/3 inch thickness. The dough, even chilled, will be pretty delicate so keep the flour close by.
  6. Cut 2.5-inch circles with a floured cookie cutter, reflouring between each cookie.
  7. Lightly knead the scraps, re-roll, and continue cutting the cookies - you should get 24 cookies.
  8. Transfer cookies to a parchment lined baking sheet and place in the fridge while the oven is preheating.
  9. Preheat oven to 350.
  10. Bake ~12 minutes, until the cookies just begin to brown around the edges.
  11. Let cool completely before transferring to your work surface, "pretty side" down.
  12. Make the marshmallow: Place 1/4 cup cold water in the bowl of your stand mixer and sprinkle the gelatin over top.
  13. Over medium heat in a small pot fitted with a candy thermometer, heat the sugar, corn syrup, dulce de leche, water, and salt to 236-238 degrees. (Any higher, and the sugar begins to burn. You'll need to stir constantly so it doesn't stick to the pan and burn).
  14. Slowly and carefully pour the dulce de leche mixture into the stand mixer bowl and whisk on low for 1-2 minutes, until combined.
  15. Increase speed to medium and whisk for 5 minutes.
  16. Increase speed to medium-high and whisk another 5 minutes.
  17. While the mixture is whisking, prepare a gallon zip-top bag by snipping off the corner creating a ~1/2-inch opening and fit the opening with a decorating coupler (you can probably get by without the coupler, but I wanted the opening round and stable).
  18. Switch mixer to the highest speed and mix for 3-5 minutes, until the marshmallow is light, fluffy, and mostly holds its shape when scooped onto a spoon or small spatula (if it's too soft and runs off the spatula, it will run off of the cookie - whisk another 1-2 minutes, if necessary).
  19. Immediately transfer the marshmallow into your zip-top bag.
  20. Pipe generous rounds of marshmallow onto 12 of the cookies.
  21. Place the remaining cookies "pretty side" up, and very lightly press down onto the marshmallow filling.
  22. Let sit for 15 minutes before coating in chocolate.
  23. To coat in chocolate, melt chocolate and shortening in a bowl.
  24. Heat chocolate and shortening in the microwave until completely melted.
  25. Holding the bottom cookie with your fingertips, dip the cookies in the chocolate and shake to remove excess. Set on a rack above a baking sheet to catch any drips (I didn't coat the very bottom with chocolate).
  26. Refrigerate until set. Store the cookies in an airtight container, each separated by wax paper or like I did - in the fridge on a plate.

Notes

Yields: 12 servings

Marshmallow recipe adapted from Marshmallow Madness, cookies adapted from The Pastry Queen

Estimated time: 2 hours

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • amy marantino

    Lucky Charms, but only because Fruity Marshmallow Rice Krispies were discontinued years ago.

  • I’m not in the US, so no prize for me (boo), but I ADORE alfajores and I’m ecstatic you posted this recipe!

  • Great challenge and great recipe!

  • Ericka

    S’mores!!! Also, being Southern, I love an occasional Moon Pie :)

  • bmk

    Wow, those look delicious! I can’t resist anything with marshmallows. My favorite is S’mores.

  • Jordan Cadiz

    I love moon pies! I remember having them all the time with my grandpa when I was younger.

  • Megan

    Chocolate Marshmallow Ice Cream!

  • Looks like a great book to have! I love rice krispie treats.

  • S’mores. No doubt about it! And now I’m imagining actually using homemade marshmallows on a s’more.. they would be over the top good. Oh boy.

  • Sarah

    Sounds like this book will lend plenty of flavors to my favorite rice krispie treats.

  • Lacy

    I have been obsessed with marshmallow cereal treats lately. LOVE!

  • yasee

    Can’t decide between between S’mores and Rice Krispie treats…they’re the ones I eat with marshmallows!!

  • anna

    There is nothing better than rocky road ice cream. Yum!

  • Liss

    rice krispie treats!

  • I made a peanut butter cup s’mores ice cream once and it was so heavenly! It used toasted marshmallows, yum!

  • My favorite food that incorporates marshmallows would be the Rice Krispie treat since I wasn’t sure if marshmallow fluff counted. If it does, then it would have to be the filling of a whoopie pie!

  • Carissa

    Rice Krispie Treats are probably #1 and S’Mores a close second. These moon pies however could up end them both! Yum!

  • Leslie

    These look delicious! I definitely have to go with s’mores for my favorite treat!

  • Jennifer A

    S’mores! S’mores! S’mores! I love s’mores and practically had a break down when Ben & Jerry’s stopped making the S’mores fro-yo. Recently treated myself to a chocolate covered s’more, amazing. Am now so inspired to make my own marshmallows to really enhance the s’mores experience!

  • Kari

    S’mores are my favorite marshmallow treat.

  • These look so lovely! I’m a rice krispie fan through and through.

  • It’s hard to choose because I love marshmallows a lot, but probably s’more pie.

  • Bree

    My favorite way to enjoy marshmallows is in a cup of hot chocolate…especially on a cold, snowy day like this!

  • carolyn s

    Sadly I have to say Rice Krispie treats….they are just so yummy!

  • Sarah L

    My favorite is definetely S’mores, with a marshmallow toasted (of course) over a campfire. Try as I may, there will never be a better marshmallow treat in my book.

  • Kimberly C

    Is it fair to say that my favorite way to consume marshmellows is on their own? I have soo been guilty of eating more than my fair share of marshmellows straight from a bag. Smores are great, too! And in hot chocolate. And just covered in chocolate. Mmm, marshmellows..

  • Ursula B

    Rice crispie treats for their versatility. Last year I made a rice crispie horse cake for my 3 year old’s birthday. He loved it, stood vigil by it until I had to hide it in the laundry room. You can change the color, add mix ins…or you can cut them up, stick a popsicle stick in them and take them to another level. Love them!

  • Rice krispies treats!

  • Cristina

    I love what you did here for these Alfajore Moon Pies and using dulce de leche. I thought about using the dulce de leche as a filling in the middle (like Shauna’s chocolate filled marshmallows), but was concerned the flavors would be too sweet together. What a great idea how you incorporated it in the syrup!

    Very nicely done…I’ll take a dozen, please! :)

  • Rebecca

    It’s gotta be s’mores!

  • Jacqui

    S’mores!!! Or in hot chocolate :-)

  • Sara

    Fudge!

  • Rocky Road bars!

  • Theresa Sea

    Hmmmm…fluffernutter sandwiches. I’ve never been into s’mores, so that’s probably my pick. :)

  • Is it a cop-out to say s’mores? Of course, I much prefer homemade graham crackers and super dark chocolate in mine…

  • Valerie

    I love Rice Krispie treats!

  • Being a fellow Texan, I’m sure you can already guess that my first marshie treat of choice is a campfire s’more. :) But I do love me a good rice krispie treat as well!!

    Ps. I would totally vote for your alfajores, they look amazing!! Let’s go Southwest bracket!! :p

  • I would have to say rice crispy treats but there is nothing I like more than a cup of hot coco with marshmallows floating in it. YUM. The book looks like a lot of fun.

  • Elaine

    For marshmallows themselves, I like millionaire salad or pink fluff as my kids called it! Homemade are the best, but the humidity where I live is a pain in the marshmallow!

  • Jennifer P

    Like so many other postings…Rice Krispie treats are my absolute favorite…i do not completely melt the marshmallows…and instead leave big chunks in my treats…and I use less cereal then called – it makes the marshmallow/cereal ratio so much gooeyier!

  • Kim

    My favorite marshmallow treat is definitely s’mores. But, I also love homemade marshmallows with fancy flavors in my hot cocoa or coffee. yum.

  • I just want to jump into the marshmallow picture on the cover of that book, and never leave. What a great recipe incorporating marshmallows, too! My favorite would have to be a simple s’more. There’s nothing better.

  • Candice Martey

    I love love love rice Krispy squares, Can’t help it! That’s my fav pick me up snack!

  • Sara

    Haagan Daas Rocky Road Ice Cream! It is luscious chocolate ice cream with ooey gooey marshmallows spread throughout. Delicious! Can never have just one bite!

  • These look amazing! But I have to say, once I made a pseudo-s’more out of roasted marshmallow, chocolate, and – instead of graham crackers – peanut butter wafer cookies…one of the best things I’ve ever tasted, hands down!

  • KCatGU

    To relish the wholeness of marshmallow, probably smores. But I am going to list a second – fudge. Here’s a reason why I am in need of a this awesome book. The last time I attempted to make homemade mallows, they never set. So I gave up reheated my almost marshmallows and made fudge out of it. Yummy

  • sandie

    Rice krispie treats definitely!

  • Shawnda, you’ve got to stop with these. UNREAL! Yum, yum, YUM!

  • Ali

    I’d have to say s’mores… although the toasted marshmallow ice cream sitting in our freezer is pretty delicious too!!

  • Savannagal

    I love to put marshmallows in a smoldering mug of hot chocolate and sit by the fireplace with my knitting. Thanks for the giveaway.

  • Sami

    Rocky Road Fudge

  • Kristen M.

    S’mores, s’mores, s’mores!

  • Elin

    I’m a s’mores over a camp fire kind of girl. Simple, but delish.

    Great giveaway and recipe by the way!

  • I love roasted marshmallows by the campfire…there’s nothing like them!

  • Tami

    Chocolate dipped marshmallows rolled in pecan pieces…love it.

  • Pat R

    I’m having a tough time deciding my favorite: almond joy cake or or double chocolate marshmallow cookies……..it’s a tie.

  • LR Laurant

    I like to place my marshmallows on top of caramel and pecans and dip them in chocolate.

  • smores!!! definitely smores!

  • Meghan

    My favorite food that incorporates marshmallows is the toasted marshmallow milkshake I had once at Stand4 in Manhattan. SOOO amazingly yummy!!! Seriously.

  • S’mores!

  • Sage

    Homemade Rice Krispie treats. Hands down. I was always so excited as a kid when I went to my best friend’s house and her mom had made the homemade kind (my mom wasn’t very into making sweets and such). They beat the boxed version ANY day!

  • BeckyS

    Will I be eternally shunned if I say rice krispie treats? The fresher the better!

    Love your blog and all your recipes, keep up the good work!

  • S’mores!! So simple, and SO yummy!

  • Jennifer

    Rice krispie treats are for sure my favorite.

  • Mb

    s’mores cookies!!

  • Rice Krispie Treats would be my definite favorite! :)

  • I love s’mores anything!

    Heather

  • Jen

    Smores!

  • S’mores… no doubt about it.

  • I actually already have this book to review, so don’t enter me in the giveaway but DANG do these sound awesome! Dulce de leche kicks everything up a notch, now doesn’t it.

  • rice krispies! yum!

  • Andrea D.

    I like to make S’more Bars. Thanks for the chance to enter.

  • I love this post! Growing up in the home of the original Mardi Gras, moon pies are a favorite of mine. I will eat them any time of day, any time of year. The city of Mobile even drops a huge moon pie over the city during the New Year’s Eve celebration. I managed to miss every parade this year and didn’t buy any moon pies at the grocery store. I even tried to bum some off of a few of my cute little patients but to no avail. I will definitely be making this recipe now to satisfy my moon pie and marshmallow sweet tooth craving.

  • Kat

    I have a soft spot for ambrosia salad with fresh coconut and homemade marshmallows for sure.

  • Patricia Potter

    My absolute favorite food that uses marshmallows is S’mores – melted chocolate plus gooey marshmallows straight from the campfire! Thank you for the moonpie recipe as well – my husband wants me to make them this weekend. :)

  • jan

    rice krispie treats with caramel filling… drizzled with chocolate

  • Leigha

    S’mores! I haven’t had them in FOR-E-VER, but they’re still my love!

  • My mom’s peanut butter fudge recipe uses marshmallows and it is so easy and delicious!!

  • These look amazing! I have to say that I love a real fire-roasted marshmallow.

  • krista

    Moon pies and rice krispy treats are my favorite

  • Melissa Hickman

    S’mores and hot cocoa!

  • Kacie

    Rice Krispie Treats are still my all-time favorite recipe with marshmallow. Who can resist a blast from the past to childhood with one of those sweet treats?

  • Ashleigh

    You can’t go wrong with good ol’ fashioned S’mores…although I do like to made a special addition by adding peanut butter to one of the graham crackers. :)

  • Tawynmanda

    Smores. They are classic and you can’t mess them up.

  • Tawynmanda

    Smores. They are classic and you can’t mess them up. I have made a variation called the white trash panini.(I didn’t come up with the name) It’s a crossiant with marshmallow, peanut butter, and chocolate. So good.

  • Amanda Thompson

    Salted Caramel Rice Krispie Treats but anything S’mores is a close second!

  • Kelley W.

    I love smorz cereal! :)

  • Rebekah

    Hmm…possibly s’mores. But I also really like Count Chocula!

  • jen

    homemade fudge with marsmallow cream, like the one David Lebovitz posted not too long ago.

  • I love marshmallow fondant icing. It’s versatile, super sweet and tasty, and everyone thinks it must take a genius to make it just because it’s always on super posh wedding cakes.

  • Allison C

    I love brown butter and vanilla bean rice crispie treats! Making my own marshmallows is on my list and this book looks like so much fun!

  • Jeanie Norman

    Looks like I’m in good company ….. rice krispy treats for sure.

  • savannah s

    the only way I like regular marshmallows is roasted, but i know in a book like this i could find something else to like!

  • Janet L

    Peeps! I know it’s just marshmallow covered in sugar but I’ve been addicted since I was old enough to eat solid food.

  • valerie

    my fav marshmallow treat is a marshmallow dipped in caramel dipped in chocolate. so lovely stumbled across it when playing around with caramel that i had to use up. soo yummy=)

  • Maureen

    I love crispy rice treats. I love s’mores. I also love a candy that has marshmallow and caramel and chocolate.

  • Nichole

    Peanut butter and marshmallow fluff sandwiches :)

  • Pam R

    S’mores definitely! In any way, shape or form!

  • Anything s’mores inspired!

  • Lindsay

    Rocky Road Ice Cream!

  • viviane

    I so miss the States – mainly for the Marshmallows 😉

  • Jackie

    my favorite foood with marshmallows?
    rice crispy treats and smores. <3 oh and sweet potato casserole with marshmallow topping.
    <33 😀

  • Claire

    S’mores!

  • S’mores! I just can’t resist toasted marshmallow combined with melted chocolate…YUM!

  • Plain and simple campfire S’mores!

  • I’m pretty simple, my current favorite marshmallow treat, is rice crispy treats. Yum.

  • Anne

    I love marshmallows, by themselves or with hot chocolate mainly, but my favorite is a chocolate-pretzel-minimarshmallow-nut snack mix. Mmmm.

  • I would have to say the classic s’more. There’s something so delicious about an ooey, gooey marshmallow, on top of chocolate sandwiched by two sweet and salty crunchy cookies.

  • Christina

    I love Lucky Charm treats. (They substitute Lucky Charm cereal for Rice Krispies!) Secondly, S’mores!

  • Lori

    Carmel covered marshmallows!

  • Kelly

    It’s got to be the whoopie pie with marshmellow fluff icing in between the two cakes… absolutely scrumptious!

  • Katie

    I have to go with the classic S’mores. You can never go wrong with that!

  • Tom K.

    ANYTHING with marshmellow fluff…and/or s’mores ice-cream!!!! <—-Delicious recipe idea!! :)

  • Roxbury Road ice cream from Jeni’s.

  • Kim

    Rocky Road Brownies…yum!!!

  • Becca

    Mississipi mud brownies! A layer of gently puffed marshmallows between layers of brownies, peanut butter, and chocolate frosting? Yes, please!

  • Stoich91

    Yes, please! 😀

  • Laura

    Definitely Devil’s Food cookies!

  • Kim

    So hard- I love hot chocolate with a big marshmallow on top, but rice krispies treats are hard to beat. I also have a hankering for a moonpie now and again too- don’t forget the RC Cola!

  • Megan the Marmalade Maker

    I’m liking the grapefruit/agave/honey marshmallows I made today :)
    There must be a citrus recipe in there that could be adapted!

  • Emma

    Rice crispy treats are definitely the best marshmallow treat, but I wouldn’t say no a whoopie pie either. Looks like a great recipe. I love aflajores, so I’m dying to try it!

  • Kathy

    s’mores or rice krispy treats. However, after reading these comments, I think I need to get out of my marshmallow rut!

  • Adrena

    S’mores!!!!

  • As much as I enjoy the moon pies that we catch off the floats on Mardi Gras day (SO good!), I have to say the marshmallow winner for me is s’mores! Absolutely s’mores!

  • Jodi

    Rocky Road ice cream!

  • It was fabulous meeting you last week and your marshmallow idea is awesome…such stiff competition in this little contest :)

  • Lynsy

    I love browned butter rice krispie treats. LOVE them.

  • Elayne

    Rocky road ice cream! :) Though Moon Pies and S’mores are a close second…

  • Hands down, Rice Krispie treats. Devoured them by the pan as a kid and still find them absolutely irresistible. Great recipe, by the way. Looking forward to trying it!

  • Easy… Homemade S’mores. Preferably with homemade graham crackers, and amazing dark chocolate to go along with the homemade marshmallows.

  • CoreyLiza

    Does hot chocolate with marshmallows count? =)

  • Raspberry Marshmallow Topped Devil Dog Bars!
    A Blog Post waiting to happen!

  • Irma

    Marshmallow buttercream FONDANT!

  • Kim Cole

    Rice Krispy treats are the best! I always make a double batch!

  • Laurie

    S’mores, for sure!

  • Jennie

    I love marshmallows! Yummy plain.. Or with chocolate pudding or the old standby rice krispy treats.

  • Linda

    Rice Krispie Treats, yumminess!

  • Lisa

    I absolutely LOVE putting marshmallows in the fruit salad I make! I also like marshmallows in my pistachio salad. Who am I kidding? Marshmallow anything is great in my book! There’s so much you can do with them…

    This recipe looks awesome!! Good luck with the contest and I’m crossing my fingers for that amazing Marshmallow book!! :)

  • Alfajores are such a treat. I haven’t had one since visiting Chile a number of years ago but have been meaning to make them with homemade dulce de leche. I love this idea and your recipe looks delicious. I would do something illegal for a good alfajor…seriously :)

  • Teresa Diaz

    Toss between a waldorf salad and fluffer nutters!

  • Nicole Durham

    Love your website and the book sounds FUN!! I have to admit that among all the recipes with marshmallows, I would die for some Rocky Road Fudge!!!!!!

  • sabrina

    Everything!!! im 17, 18 in 1 more day!!!!! march 9, and im making a topsy turvy birthday cake for me and my twin bro ( he doesnt think i can do a good job, but ill prove him wrong) anyways i think marshmellow foundant is an absolutely die for!!!!! yay, marshmellows!!!!!!!!! :)