Friday, June 5, 2015

rice krispie treats

Rice Krispie Treats 08

If you've spent any time looking at the recipes on Dulcedo, my philosophy on cooking is probably easy to identify. I generally think the best food is simple and approachable, and made with fresh, quality ingredients. I eschew cake mixes and other preservative-laden, processed foods in favor of fresh foods with ingredients I can both recognize and pronounce. If I'm going to spend time in the kitchen, it's worth it to me to cook from scratch. And if I'm not up for that, then it's worth it to me to pay someone else to cook from scratch and I'll enjoy a meal out. That's just what I think. Generally.

Rice Krispie Treats 01

But once in a while, I make an exception. Particularly when nostalgia is involved. When I was a kid, my Grandma would bake brownies filled with pockets of caramel. She used a cake mix and individually wrapped caramels. Someday maybe I'll play with constructing that same dish from scratch, but for now -- once in a great while -- I'll make it her way. Because it makes me think of her, and of how exciting it was to help unwrap the caramels for her when she was ready to bake.

Rice Krispie Treats 03

Rice Krispie treats are sort of the same. While I don't love buying 4 packages of strange, white, powder-coated fluff balls that don't resemble any food in nature, I don't want to live in a world without Rice Krispie treats either, or a world where baking up a batch earns you a snooty glance and snarky comment from foodies everywhere. Rice Krispie treats make me think of church potlucks and celebrating classmates' birthdays at school. Reminders of those days are nice. There is a place in the world for Rice Krispie treats. And once every five years or so, that place can be my kitchen.

Rice Krispie Treats 09

But if you're going to make Rice Krispie treats, at least do it well. Who hasn't had a treat with too many krispies, that savagely scraped up the roof of your mouth as you chewed? Or a treat that tasted mostly of butter -- or worse, of cooking spray? Gross. You can make the original Kellog's recipe; it will yield a perfectly acceptable treat. But the recipe below elevates it slightly -- still using the original ingredients, but doing so in a way that strikes the ultimate krispie-gooey balance. Parading them around with little green flags is optional. (But recommended, just for fun.)

Rice Krispie Treats
Adapted from a Cookies and Cups recipe
Makes one 13x9" pan

7 1/2 Tablespoons salted butter
12 cups plus 3 cups mini marshmallows
9 cups Rice Krispies cereal
nonstick cooking spray (such as Pam)

Line a 13x9" baking dish with foil. (Dish should be at least 2" deep.) Spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Tear off a second sheet of foil the same size as your dish. Spray the sheet lightly with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Once butter is melted, add 12 cups of mini marshmallows. Stir frequently to prevent scorching. When marshmallows are just melted, turn off heat and stir in cereal to combine. Then stir in the remaining 3 cups of marshmallows.

Immediately pour the mixture into the prepared pan and use the spray-coated second sheet of foil and a heavy-bottomed glass to press it in evenly. Allow to cool completely.

To cut the treats into squares, spray a sharp knife with nonstick cooking spray prior to making the first cut. Treats may be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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