Gaby Dalkin‘s long-awaited second cookbook What’s Gaby Cooking: Everyday California Food delivers on what the title promises — Golden-State-inspired recipes that star lots of fresh ingredients. The popular blogger’s cookbook mixes light, fresh dishes like grilled salmon skewers with more decadent desserts like the cinnamon-roll chocolate chip monkey bread. If you follow Dalkin on Instagram for food inspo, you won’t be disappointed by her latest cookbook — there’s a photo for every recipe (with the exception of a few sauces).
The section names definitely show off Dalkin’s humor with titles like Give Me All the Greens!, It’s Six O’Clock and I’m Starving (AKA dishes you can whip up quick—perfect for busy weeknights), and Carbs, Carbs, + More Carbs (she’s a girl after our own heart!). This Cali blogger also does not hold back on showcasing trendy ingredients like cauliflower rice, poke, and kimchi. So what’s Dalkin’s favorite recipe from the new cookbook? She told Brit + Co, “Picking favorite recipes from the book is like picking favorite children: Ya can’t.”
As a result, we picked ours, her famous chocolate chip smookies, which are s’mores made with chocolate chip cookies. Yes, they’re as amazing as they sound. These easy-to-eat sweets beg to be served at summer bonfires, 4th of July, and… well, you get the idea.
Chocolate Chip Smookies
Growing up, there were always cookies around. My dad, the aforementioned cookie monster, regularly made batches and stored them in the freezer so a sweet fix was never more than thirty seconds away. I’ve brought that same tradition into my own home, much to [my husband] Thomas’s delight. This recipe, which is a regular in the rotation, is inspired by summer nights spent around campfire toasting marshmallows. Instead of graham crackers, a marshmallow filling gets sandwiched between two chocolate chip cookies. You will need a disposable piping bag and a 1/2-inch (12-mm) round or star piping tip for this recipe.
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 3 graham crackers, chopped
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons unflavored gelatin
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- pinch of kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. To make the cookie dough: In a stand mixer, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on low until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl and mix until incorporated. Add the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder, and mix on low speed until all the ingredients are incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips and graham crackers by hand. Cover the dough with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 72 hours.
2. To make the marshmallow filling: While the dough is chilling, combine 1/4 cup of the water and the gelatin in the bowl of a stand mixer. Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment.
3. In a small saucepan, combine the remaining 1/4 cup water, the granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved and brushing down the sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to wash any sugar crystals down into the syrup. Attach a candy thermometer to the saucepan and continue to cook without stirring until the sugar mixture reads 240°F. Remove from the heat, remove the thermometer, and with the mixture set to low speed, slowly pour the hot sugar mixture into the mixer. Once all of the sugar mixture is in, increase the speed to high and mix for 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix for 1 minute.
4. To bake the cookies: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
5. Scoop out 2 tablespoons of the dough and roll the dough into a ball. Place the dough onto the prepared baking sheets; 12 cookies per sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges are just slightly golden brown and the center is still a bit soft.
6. Remove the baking sheets from the oven and let the cookies rest for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire cooling rack. Cool the sheets and repeat with the remaining dough (makes 36 cookies total).
7. To assemble: Using a rubber spatula sprayed with cooking spray (to keep the marshmallow from sticking), remove the marshmallow filling from the mixer and place it in a piping bag fitted with a 1/2-inch (12-mm) round or star tip. Pipe some marshmallow onto the bottom of a cookie, then sandwich with another cookie. Repeat with the remaining cookies and marshmallow. Serve as needed, but enjoy within 2 to 3 days.
What’s your favorite ‘What’s Gaby Cooking’ recipe? Tell us @BritandCo!
(Photos via Matt Armendariz and recipe from What’s Gaby Cooking by Gaby Dalkin, published by Abrams Books © 2018.)