Sunday, 28 July 2013

Compost (kitchen sink) cookies

I love Momofuku.  I've never been to any of their restaurants, but I love David Chang's philosophy on food. I have the cookbook, and I spent a merry weekend a few years ago making 15 recipes from the cookbook in my Momofuku weekend.

I think Christina Tosi is a genius too.  I mean, there are no words to describe the crack pie.

Notwithstanding my food issues, I really wanted a copy of Momofuku Milk Bar.  I figured that even though I couldn't eat the things, I could still read about how they developed the recipes.

My mother bought me a copy for my birthday (a few months ago now) and I've only just gotten a chance to read it.  As I was reading through it, I wandered how hard it would be to convert these recipes to something I could eat.

I've made Tosi's compost cookies before, using peanut butter chips, crisps, pretzels and all sorts of nice things.  These cookies would be my first challenge.

I found this recipes for grain free kitchen sink cookies from Frisky Lemon Nutrition.  Allison suggests adding your own "kitchen sink" ingredients, such as like dried cranberries, raisins, walnuts, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, carob chips.  Yes, or Smiths crisps, gluten free pretzels, chocolate chips, Momofuku cornflake crunch and Momofuku milk crumbs.

Cornflake Crunch made using Schar gluten free cornflakes, Darifree powdered milk alternative and Nuttelex along with sugar.

The first thing I learned is that Nuttelex is really really salty.  I had never noticed it before.  They also do not make a no salt version.  Luckily, I'm a big fan of salty sweet things.  The second thing is something that everyone knew, you should use four parts Nuttelex for every five parts butter due to the higher moisture content.  Luckily, the extra moisture didn't matter too much in these test recipes but it would make a huge difference in some of the others.  

Milk crumb made using Darifree, gluten free plain flour, Nuttelex and Bonvita rice milk white chocolate.

The moisture content in the Nuttelex did make a difference with the milk crumb, requiring twice the amount of cooking time to dry it out.  Also, the rice milk white chocolate is quite tricky to melt.

When you first taste the cornflake crunch or the milk crumb is slightly strange.  D even found the texture of the milk crumb off putting.  Then you took another bite and you realise that these little crunches and crumbs have a really complex flavour for so few ingredients.  Then you find that you can't stop eating them.  Of course, that might just be me.

Even though the cornflake crunch and the milk crumb were the stars of these cookies, the cookies themselves are pretty good too.  My coconut flakes were quite large, next time I'll blitz them for a bit to break them down because the large flakes meant I had to make larger cookies and these are some filling cookies.  There's a lot to them so smaller cookies would work better.

I find that the almond flour based cookies are quite soft and chewy.  It's not a bad thing because I love my cookies chewy but the cornflake crunch adds a nice crispy counterpoint.

I was getting a bit lazy as it came time to bake and I didn't want to wait to finish the milk crumb before I started baking the cookies, so my first two trays were milk crumb free.  Unfortunately, the milk crumb turned the cookies, which were already pretty awesome, into something amazing.  Now no one is allowed to eat the two milk crumb cookies left but me.

My next challenge: the crack pie.

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