Banana Moonpies


12 tablespoons butter

3/4 cup powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup all-purpose flour


1/4 cup water

1/4 cup light corn syrup

3/4 cup sugar

2 egg whites

1 tablespoon confectioners' gelatin

2 tablespoons cold water

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


12 ounces white chocolate, chips or chopped finely

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon banana extract

Preheat oven to 350F.

To make the Dough: In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until soft and smooth. Add the sugar and continue mixing until well blended. Add the vanilla and mix until light and fluffy.

In a separate bowl, stir together cornstarch and flour. With the mixer running at low speed, add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and blend just until combined. Form the dough into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and chill at least 2 hours or overnight.

On a floured work surface, using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/8-inch thick. Use flour-dipped biscuit cutters to cut out circles and place them on an ungreased sheet pan, leaving 1-inch between the cookies. You can re-roll the scraps. Bake until just golden around the edges, 12 to 14 minutes.

To make the Marshmallows: Combine the 1/4 cup water, the corn syrup, and the sugar in a saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer. Bring to a boil and cook to "soft-ball" stage, or about 235F.

Meanwhile, in a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form. Sprinkle the gelatin over the 2 tablespoons water and let dissolve. When the syrup reaches 235F, remove it from the heat, add the gelatin, and mix. Pour the syrup into the whipped egg whites. Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.

Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe a "kiss" of marshmallow onto half of the cookies, and top with the rest to make sandwiches. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.

To make the coating: Melt the white chocolate and vegetable oil together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water, stirring occasionally. Once melted, stir in banana extract. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-filled cookies into the hot chocolate. Lift out with a fork and let the excess chocolate drip back into the bowl. Place on the cookie sheet and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.

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