I have a not so secret obsession with various women pastry chefs, probably because it is my ultimate desire to be a pastry chef businesswoman icon. My favourite two without a doubt are Joanne Chang and Christina Tosi. The latter is the mastermind behind Milk Bar in the whole Momofuku amazingness that was started by David Chang. Milk Bar features whimsical turns on various pantry staples and absolutely unholy amounts of butter. Her secret is to add milk powder to cereals and such to create an additional component to put in cookies and cakes that take them to another level. Milk powder is not hard to find in America and shockingly was also easy to find in Australia and it’s quite cheap, so I highly recommend you make the investment solely to indulge in some of her creations.
These are technically called cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow cookies but I prefer to call them crack cookies because of their absurdly addictive nature. She also makes a “crack pie”, but honestly this is better and involves way less time investment. This dough is so good that I truly could just eat it with a spoon. The baked cookies are obviously also amazing. I have modified the recipe below to include approximately half of the butter actually called for because honestly the original amount is ridiculous and I just could not justify putting in that much. These cookies don’t take 15 minutes to pull together like most of my recipes as you have to make the cornflake crunch first, but trust me, it’s beyond worth it. Christina Tosi is a genius.
Cornflake crunch ingredients
5 c. cornflakes
½ c. milk powder
3 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
125 g butter, melted
Heat oven to 140 C / 275 F. In a medium bowl, with your hands, crush cornflakes until they are in pretty small pieces. Add milk powder, sugar, and salt; toss to mix. Add butter and use a fork or spoon to toss it all together and mix thoroughly. The butter will act as a sort of glue, creating a bunch of small clusters.
On a parchment lined baking sheet, spread clusters and bake for 20 minutes, at which point they should look toasted, smell buttery, and crunch gently when cooled slightly and chewed. Depending on how you like your cornflake crunch, you may want to bake for 25 minutes to make them a bit crunchier (trust me once you have these cookies, you’ll want to make cornflake crunch again). Cool completely before storing or using in a recipe. Stored in an airtight container at room temperature, the crunch will keep fresh for one week; in the fridge or freezer, it will keep for a month. Good luck trying to not to eat this straight out of the container, though.
125 g butter, softened
2/3 c. granulated sugar
2/3 c. light brown sugar, tightly packed
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1½ c. flour
½ tsp. each of baking powder and baking soda
1 ½ tsp. salt
1½ cup flour
2.5 to 3 cups of Cornflake Crunch
2/3 c. mini chocolate chips or cut up chocolate chunks from a bar (regular choc chips work fine too)
1¼ c. mini marshmallows – or you can just take big marshmallows and cut each one into 4-6 little pieces
Cream butter and sugars in a large bowl. Add the egg and the vanilla and mix thoroughly. Then add the flour, baking powder, soda, and salt, and mix until barely combined. Then dump in all the delicious parts – cornflake crunch, chocolate chips, and marshmallows, and stir gently until combined – you can also use your hands at this point. Feel free to now refrigerate the dough until you need it (for up to several days), as this makes the flavours of the dough even better.
Once you are ready to bake, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 190 C or 375 F . Shape the dough into small balls (or large ones if you like but I am a smaller type of cookie person) and place on the pan. Then put the pan in the freezer for about 10 minutes – this step is important if you want them to not completely flatten. I naturally was far too eager to bake and totally forgot about this step, so I ended up with a flat mess – delicious, but not super pretty. The next time I put them in the freezer and they were much prettier. Bake for about 15 minutes (could be less depending on your oven or your tastes) – basically, you want them to spread and puff up a bit, and take them out when they are browned on the edges and just beginning to brown toward the center. Watch them carefully! If they are still pale or doughy on the surface they aren’t done yet. Technically, cool the cookies (you can taste all the different amazing flavours better that way), but obviously, the warm cookies are amazing too.
The best part about making the cornflake crunch is that it’s enough for 2 batches of cookies. So I promptly made these again about 2 days later – I’d run out of marshmallows so I actually put in some raisins and that combination was incredible too. Basically, where Christina Tosi is involved you cannot go wrong. These are dinner party cookies, not just eat by yourself cookies (although I obviously indulged in the latter as well) – they are that good.