Mallo Mountain Cookies

A three generational road trip from California to Connecticut (to drop my granddaughter off at college) was full of adventures and lots of laughter. You’re invited to travel along as I share recipes inspired by my favorite memories.

If you are ever in Altoona, Pennsylvania you must stop at the Boyer Candy Factory Outlet. You can stock up on essentials like Mallo Cups, Clark Bars, and my new favorite. . . Jimmie Stix. (I won’t be using Jimmie Stix in a recipe because I ATE THEM ALL.) Seriously, retro candy never tasted so good.

Mallo Cups are filled with creamy marshmallowy filling. There is a little coconut in there too, which is very subtle in flavor and texture. Since I’m not a fan of coconut in candy, I was a little leery about this, but found the coconut added something special to the candy cups.

I brought quite a few home with me, but since it took me a few tries to nail the cookie recipe, I ran out and had to order more online. I found that the small (.5 ounce) cups worked best. You can order directly from Boyer: Boyer Candies

Or you might want to try Ebay. I ordered some from there (hello . . . .free shipping!) and they were mailed quickly in a protective bag with a small freezer pack inside. Nicely done!

Topping graham-based cookies with Mallo Cups created little cookie mountains in various stages of volcanic activity. Some stayed solid, some oozed marshmallow filling, and a few erupted dramatically. All were delicious.

No mixer is needed for this recipe. It all gets stirred up by hand in one saucepan! No chilling, no rolling . . . so easy. (I don’t use a microwave, but if you do, you can simply melt the butter and chocolate in a sturdy microwave-proof bowl instead of using the stove.)

Mallo Mountain Cookies
Makes 24 cookies if you're using the .5 oz Mallo Cups. If you have larger cups, add a little more dough to each cookie, which should yield approximately 18.
  • 24 Mallo Cups - .5 oz. each
  • 9 full graham crackers (1 sleeve) finely crushed
  • ½ cup butter
  • 4 ounces milk chocolate (if using chips, this is ¾ cup)
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt (if using unsalted butter, increase to ¼ teaspoon)
  1. Preparation: Line two large baking sheets with parchment. Unwrap 24 Mallow Cups and set aside. Remove ¼ cup of the graham cracker crumbs and set aside in a small bowl. Heat oven to 375 F.
  2. In a large saucepan on lowest heat, melt the butter and chocolate, stirring often.
  3. Remove from heat and add the brown sugar and graham cracker crumbs (except for the reserved crumbs in bowl). Stir to combine.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla. Stir well.
  5. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt. Allow mixture to sit for 5-10 minutes; it will thicken during that time.
  6. Each cookie will use 1 rounded tablespoon of dough (about 4 teaspoons). My medium-size cookie scoop is perfect for this. Using your hands, roll each scoop into a ball and dip in the reserved crumbs, leaving the top bare. Place on baking sheet and press one of the Mallo Cups onto the ball of dough, pressing firmly until you can see a little dough around the edge of the cup. (The Mallo Cup will not be pressed all the way into the dough.) Repeat, keeping cookies 2 inches apart.
  7. Bake for 11 minutes, remove from oven and allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for a minute or two before transferring to a cooling rack.

Finely crush the graham crackers. Remember to set aside 1/4 cup for rolling the balls of dough in.

Melt the butter and chocolate, then stir in the graham cracker crumbs and brown sugar.

Add eggs and vanilla. Stir well.

Add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir just until combined and let mixture sit for 5 minutes to thicken.

Dip each ball of dough in reserved crumbs, at least halfway up. You can roll the entire ball in crumbs, but you may need to crush another cracker or two.

Press a Mallo Cup on each ball of dough and bake.

I’m doing this as inspiration strikes, so don’t be surprised if I backtrack to Reno or speed ahead to Connecticut!



Vallomar Cookies

blogchoc marshmallow hearts3Okay, here’s the deal: I procrastinate. A lot. For weeks now I’ve had this vision of  a chocolate heart with a layer of marshmallow and a cookie bottom – kind of like a Mallomar, but since it would be for Valentine’s Day I’d call it a Vallomar.  I pictured it made in a mold like this:

This is what I wanted...

This is what I wanted…

However, we live almost two hours away from a craft store, and the closest thing I could find in town was a baking pan with small heart-shaped cavities – much smaller hearts than I had pictured. Since I waited until the last minute, there was no time to order online, so…I made do. It worked, but it would have been SO much easier with a flexible candy mold.

With one batch of graham cookie dough, eight ounces of chocolate, and one batch of marshmallow frosting, I made 12 Vallomar cookies, 6 large heart sandwich cookies, two pre-baked heart-shaped crusts, and had a pile of little graham hearts left over. That’s a lotta love!

These aren’t meant to be graham crackers, exactly – they’re more like a graham shortbread. They won’t spread, so you can put them very close together on the cookie sheet. If you are making the Vallomars, you’ll need to get a heart-shaped cookie cutter that is a little smaller than the cavities of your heart molds. Here’s the dough recipe:

Graham Cookies
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 2 cups graham flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. In large bowl (a stand mixer works best) beat butter, brown sugar, and powdered sugar until well mixed.
  3. Add egg yolk, vanilla, and milk, and beat well.
  4. Add graham flour, all-purpose flour, and cornstarch and beat on low until combined. (This is a very stiff dough, so you may need to use a dough hook to finish mixing.)
  5. Roll out on lightly floured surface. These should be fairly thin - no more than ¼-inch. Cut out desired shapes with cookie cutters.
  6. Place close together on baking sheet. Bake 9-10 minutes. Let them cool on the sheet for a few minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool completely.


Cookies may be baked close together.

Cookies may be baked close together.

While your cookies are baking, you can coat the molds with chocolate and put them in the fridge.

Use milk chocolate or dark chocolate, whichever you prefer. I melt mine in a bowl in the microwave, beginning with 30 seconds, and then 15 second increments (stirring each time) until the chocolate is melted. If you’re using milk chocolate you may need to add a teaspoon of shortening or coconut oil to make it thinner. It will take approximately a pound of chocolate if you’re making all of the dough into Vallomars. If you’re like me, after making a dozen or two you’ll just want to be done, so you’ll cut the rest of the dough out into larger hearts and slap some chocolate on one side, marshmallow on the other, and put them together. Much easier, and if you drizzle a little chocolate over them, they’re almost as pretty as the Vallomars. Almost.

Graham cookies, marshmallow frosting, and chocolate. Yum!

Graham cookies, marshmallow frosting, and chocolate. Yum!

Coat the molds with a layer of chocolate. Some people use brushes, but a plastic measuring spoon worked well for me. So does a (clean) finger. Make sure you bring the chocolate all the way to the top of the cavity. Put in the refrigerator to harden. Repeat with another thin layer if necessary to coat completely.

Coating the hearts with melted chocolate.

Coating the hearts with melted chocolate.

While the cookies are cooling and the chocolate molds are chilling, make the marshmallow frosting.


2 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon salt
1  teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup

In a medium bowl, beat egg whites, salt, and vanilla at medium speed until foamy. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating at high speed until soft peaks form and sugar is dissolved.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring corn syrup just to a boil. Holding pan high above egg mixture, pour in a very thin stream, beating at highest speed until frosting is thick.

Ready to assemble? Bring the chocolate molds out of the fridge. Fill one cavity (this is your test cookie) about 2/3 full with the marshmallow frosting (I used a sandwich baggie with the tip cut of and piped mine in) and top it with one of the graham cookies. There should be a little room around the cookie, and a little space on top. If the cookie is a snug fit, you’ll have to do what I did and use a paring knife to shave them a bit, because you want the chocolate on top to fill in between the cookie and the mold. If there’s no room on top for chocolate, don’t put quite as much marshmallow in the rest of them.

Adding marshmallow frosting and a cookie.

Adding marshmallow frosting and a cookie.

Now top each of them with enough melted chocolate to cover the cookie completely. Tap the mold gently on the counter to get any bubbles out. Pop the filled mold in the freezer for 5 minutes or so, until the chocolate is firm. Turn it upside down and tap gently. (Or if you were better prepared than I was and have a plastic mold, flex it a little.) The Vallomars should pop right out.

Fill with a layer of chocolate.

Fill with a layer of chocolate.

You could flavor and color the filling, or put a sweet little royal icing rose on top. Or…drizzle with a contrasting chocolate (dark drizzle on milk chocolate, and vice versa.)

This dough works well as a tart crust. Make sure it’s rolled thin and don’t over bake it, or it will get too hard to cut neatly. I even baked one in a  small cake pan and filled it with chocolate pudding swirled with leftover marshmallow frosting and walnuts. misc10 027

3 days and counting! <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3