Friday, May 29, 2009

Name this dessert

Nearly a year ago, I invented a crispy cookie made out of an egg roll wrapper. I had a few wrappers left over after making something else, and, since one of my favorite dessert crepes is a simple butter-and-sugar topping, I tried that on the wrapper and warmed it up. What happened was a caramelization that made a sweet, flaky, brittle, crispy folded square that had something of the flavor of an elephant ear, but crunchy. At first I just ate them like that — I brought them to a potluck covered in a little powdered sugar and they were snapped right up.

Then I got inspired by some fresh waffle cones and wondered if I could make a cone shape ... and maybe fill it with whipped cream, which would add some lightness to the dark caramel flavor. I bought a few pizzelle-cone rollers to make them and some snow-cone holders to hold them, and they were excellent — but time-consuming and uneven to cook.

Next I tried oven-baking the cookies, which was a real turning point; they were much easier and more uniform that continually rotating them on a pan. But I was back to the flat shape, as any cone shape I made on the baking sheet just drooped in the heat. So today I took all of my origami skills to try to make a shape that would retain its shape in the oven and still be able to hold whipped cream. The two that worked were a taco-shaped (but which ended up being as messy to eat as regular tacos are), and the one above, which resembles either a fancy folded napkin, or maybe a pocket square, or a flower of some sort, or the pope's miter.

I need your help naming the cookie! (Or is it a cannoli? It's a cream-filled tube, yes, but the texture and taste of it doesn't much resemble a cannoli.) The unique features are that it stands upright, it's flaky/crispy/crunchy/brittle, filled with whipped cream, very light and airy, and has a caramelized deep flavor. Crunchtubes™? Brittlecreams™? Sweet Stalks™? Give me your thoughts in the comments below.

Incidentally, the reason I finalized the design today is because I wanted to bring them to the food & hospitality lecture I gave at the Quest artSPEAK tonight, to illustrate a project that you could do together when you have someone over to dinner. Something unique like this would create lasting memories if you worked on making them together. Everyone seemed to like the final product.

They are rather indulgent (since there's nothing really good in them, per se) but they are so small and airy that you'd have to eat three or four to equal a regular cookie. And they're inexpensive — a package of wrappers for 89 cents would make 60+ cookies, far more than you'd need, and the only other ingredients are butter and powdered sugar, certainly under a dollar's worth, and one squirt of canned whipped cream per snack.

Now that I've got the final product, next time I make them I'll take photos of the process and post a recipe and how-to guide.

No comments:

Post a Comment