If you like Rice Krispy treats, you’re going to love Scotcheroos, because they are almost drowned in chocolate. Ok, so I exaggerate a bit, but the addition of chocolate is never a bad idea. A recent visit to my old school for my nephew’s song and poetry show brought back a lot of sweet memories from my childhood. The cafeteria looked like it hadn’t been renovated since I graduated to junior high! My happiest memories from elementary school are from bake sale days (big surprise). The moms would make classic treats like M+M cookies, mini cupcakes and brownies.
Maybe that explains my craving for Rice Krispie treats these few months. MONTHS, because I keep buying the huge, family size box of puffed rice, bring it home with the intention to make them and yet, somehow they disappear before I get around to making anything with them. They either end up as a topping for ice cream or are ordered at breakfast time by my favourite patron, li’l Miss Daisy who asks for them as “The Friends Cereal” (you know, because the three elves are friends, after all, right?)
My grandmother used to make rice krispie treats for us every now and then. She would whip up a batch in a jiffy and it always tasted so buttery, toasty and so American. It’s just the thing for your 4th of July celebration when the weather is too hot to run the oven, but you need something sweet for dessert.
Temptation is everywhere I look: At the supermarket, grocery store, even the cafeteria at work. Ready-made rice krispie treats are all around. All I have to do is pay the nice lady at the cash register and open the shiny blue wrapper. But, you know me quite well by now. That just will not do. I like to do things my way, at home, in my kitchen, with the best stuff. French butter, toasted coconut, Madagascar vanilla, Belgian dark chocolate chips. RICH is definitely the right word. If you’re still not convinced, Daisy will attest to how good they are.
Makes about 2 dozen thin 2″ bars
1/2 stick butter
1/2 cup coconut
1 vanilla bean or 2 tsp extract
2 cups marshmallows
6 cups puffed rice cereal
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking oil.
Melt butter in a deep nonstick pot.
Once the butter is bubbling, add coconut and stir to toast evenly.
Take care not to burn the butter or coconut.
Add salt and vanilla.
Add marshmallows and stir constantly until they are melted.
Turn the heat off and add the puffed rice.
Mix gently to coat the cereal well.
Transfer to the cookie sheet and spread evenly, patting down to smooth
Sprinkle chocolate chips on top and allow them to melt.
If you are in a hurry to munch on these, transfer the tray to the fridge
for 5 minutes to move the cooling process along.
Once well cooled and the chocolate has solidified again, use a sharp knife
to cut the bars to desired size.
Store in airtight container for several days.
Rice krispie treats really are an American classic, at least to me. They always remind me of my happy days as a kid, riding my bike around the block with my sister, cousins, friends. Who knows when puffed rice cereal was invented or when the first batch of marshmallows was made? What is most important here is the genius who came up with the idea to put the two together along with butter, because everything’s better with butter. Since there is no law against changing things up, I added a few things to take them over the top, just in time to celebrate our freedom to do exactly that! Happy 4th of July, y’all! Be safe and party hearty!