White Chocolate – SF

Posted on February 10, 2011


We have this cool new page called Gimme Some Sugah! We’re not literally asking for sugar.  I’m pretty sure I have plenty of the real stuff in my cupboard.  But, I’d love some figurative “Sugah”.

You know, funny witticisms or videos (thank you Dave & Jen).

Stuff you tried and liked or didn’t like (we call that “rancid sugah”).

Or requests.  You suggest a theme, and we’ll bake our version.  It’s like cooking-on-demand (or as the hip kids say—crowdsourcing).

Seriously, why are you still reading this?  Check it out and leave us some fun comments.  Cathy did, and now we all get to reap the benefits of delicious and often underrated white chocolate.

In honor of Cathy (a physics genius, all around super best friend and lover of young John Travolta films and old Weezer songs), I’m going to go all Alton Brown on you:

What exactly is white chocolate?  David Lebovitz has a great, concise explanation for you, but I’m going to highlight exactly what you need to know before you buy white chocolate (this will be on a quiz later):

  • White chocolate has to have a minimum of 20% cocoa fat. The higher the percentage of cocoa fat, the better the quality of white chocolate.
  • …and cocoa fat should be the only fat in the chocolate (no tropical fats, such as coconut or palm kernel oil).  And, if you can help it, stay away from “morsels.”  Morsel is to chocolate as fruit juice cocktail (only 10-20% juice!) is to Juicy Juice (100% juice).
  • Most white chocolate manufacturers are European, although there are a few American brands: E. Guittard, Baker’s and Askinoise.  Do you know of any others?  To find “real” white chocolate, check your local grocer first, then Whole foods or other specialty food stores.

I think you can actually see the vanilla bean.

White Chocolate Cranberry Rice Krispie Treats

PRINT RECIPE (full page or recipe card size)

Adapted from David Lebovitz’s blog (and of course, Kellogg’s original)

David recommends using candied nuts for some extra sweet-n-salty indulgence.  I think they would be a great addition, or if you wanted to oomph up the salt factor, crushed pretzels would work well here.

I used cranberries since they are commonly used as a tart foil to the sweetness of white chocolate.  Oh, and in case you didn’t notice, cranberries are red and marshmallows are white and Valentine’s Day is on Monday.  That’s also a good reason to use some dried berries.

Makes about 20 treats

  • 3 tablespoon salted butter, plus a dash of salt
  • 4 oz (about 1 bar) white chocolate, chopped (for melting)
  • White chocolate chips (not morsels!), about ½ – ¾ cup depending on how much you like white chocolate (for adding at the end)
  • 1 ½ teaspoon of vanilla bean paste (Cathy sent me the most amazing vanilla bean paste; it has seriously changed my baking life.)
  • 1 cup of dried cranberries (I used cherry flavored cranberries.  Dried cherries would also work nicely here).
  • 10 ounce bag marshmallows (mini marshmallows melt faster, but you can use either)
  • 6 cups crisp rice

I had a little too much fun taking photos.

1. Put parchment paper down on 13×9-inch rectangular pan.  I actually think a smaller pan would be fine, too, depending on how thick you like your treats.

2. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Add the white chocolate and stir until melted.  Add vanilla bean paste.

3. Add the marshmallows and stir constantly over the heat until completely melted. (If they start to scorch on the bottom, remove from heat and continue to stir, placing the pan back on the heat occasionally, stirring until smooth.

4. Remove from heat and add the cranberries and Rice Krispies until well combined. Add white chocolate chips.

5. Scrape into the prepared pan and smooth the top.  Let cool.  Cut into neat bars or squares with a sharp knife.