Dessert Mash-Ups Cookbook by Dorothy Kern

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Featured in the 2014 Holiday Gift Guide.

Dessert Mash-Ups 1
Everyone in my house loves dessert. Whether it is an ooey gooey chocolate chip cookie, cheesecake, brownies or pie dessert is something that everyone in my house looks forward to. I found the BEST dessert cookbook ever, it is called Dessert Mash-Ups by Dorothy Kern. I know you are probably wondering what is a mash-up, it is a delightful combination of two treats in one! The book is a hardback, full color book that features 52 tantalizing recipes.

There are eight different categories including:
Breakfast but Better-recipe example Blueberry Muffin Waffles
Candy Concoctions-recipe example Lemon Meringue Pie Fudge
Cookies, Brownies, and Bars together at Last-recipe example S’more Cookies
Pie Surprise-recipe example Milky Way Brownie Pie
Cake & Cupcake Creations-recipe example Death by Chocolate Brownie Cake
New Takes on Cheesecake-recipe example Oatmeal Cookie Cheesecake Bars
Double Dips-recipe example Tiramisu Dip
Holiday Mash-Ups-recipe example White Chocolate Coconut Pie Fudge

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this cookbook. The first thing I noticed when I received it was the beautiful photos. Once you take a look at the pictures you will want to get in the kitchen pronto and start creating these delicious and unique recipes. Every recipe has a lovely introduction from the author that adds a special personal touch to the book. It is really way more than “just” a cookbook, in my opinion Dorothy Kern created a personal work of art with Dessert Mash-Ups. I am serious, when I first started browsing through the book I couldn’t help but talk out loud. I know my son thought I was crazy because I was saying things like “HELLO gorgeous”. I know it may sound silly but I honestly couldn’t contain myself when I opened this book. If you love to cook or have a foodie in your life this is a “must have” book for your kitchen. Dessert Mash-Ups is $21.95 and worth every penny in my opinion. Check out a couple of my favorites recipes from the book and see for yourself.
Recipe and photo credit: Courtesy of Ulysses Press/Dorothy Kern.


Dessert Mash-Ups
Death by Chocolate Brownie Cake
Yield 12 servings
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Chill Time About 2 hours

This cake is the ultimate chocolate experience. Brownies get baked in round cake pans, layered with chocolate ganache filling, and frosted with a rich chocolate buttercream. Warning: Die-hard chocolate fans only! It’s death by chocolate cake…in a brownie!

2 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 ounces semisweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1⁄3 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1⁄3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1⁄2 cups walnuts, divided
1 3⁄4 cups semisweet mini chocolate chips, divided
1⁄2 cup heavy whipping cream

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1⁄2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 to 4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream, as needed

Make the Brownies
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9-inch round pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Then butter and flour the parchment. (You can also use the cooking spray with flour in it.)

2. Place the two baking chocolates and butter in a large, microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high power for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until the chocolate is smooth. Stir in the sugar. Add the eggs, vanilla, salt, and cocoa, and stir well. Add the flour and stir carefully.

3. Divide the batter between the pans and spread to the edges (batter will be thick). Bake for 21 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted 2 inches from the edge of the pan comes out with just a touch of crumbs. Set pans on a wire rack to cool completely before removing brownies from pans.

Make the Filling
1. Spread the walnuts on a cookie sheet and toast in the 350°F oven for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring every minute, until toasted. Do not walk away from the oven; they can burn quickly. Place in a bowl and set aside.

2. Bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a small pan. Place 1 cup of the mini chocolate chips and the heavy whipping cream in a bowl that will fit on top of the pan but not touch the water. Stir until the mixture is melted and smooth. Remove from the heat, let sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes, then refrigerate until thick enough to spread, 30 to 40 minutes.
Make the Frosting
1. With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low until smooth. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar until crumbly. Beat in the cocoa, salt, and vanilla. Add the heavy whipping cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you reach your desired consistency.

Assemble the Cake
1. Finely chop the toasted walnuts.

2. Place half the frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip or a 1M tip. Place the first brownie layer on a cake stand and pipe frosting around the edge, creating a barrier for the filling. Place the filling in the center and spread to the edges. Sprinkle with 1⁄3 cup of the chopped walnuts. Place the second brownie layer on top of the first. Frost the top and sides with the frosting. Place the remaining walnuts around the edges. Pipe a border around the top of the cake and fill the center with the remaining 3⁄4 cup mini chocolate chips. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Store loosely covered at room temperature; the cake will stay fresh up to 5 days.

Tip! Try using pecans or cashews instead of the walnuts, or you can leave them out altogether!

Dessert Mash-Ups

S’more Cookies
Yield 3 dozen cookies, about 18 large sandwiches
Prep Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 1 to 2 hours
Cook Time 10 minutes

S’mores are that quintessential summer campfire dessert. My problem? I don’t camp. In fact, my family jokes that, for me, staying in a two-star hotel would be camping. Since I won’t be pitching a tent in the great outdoors anytime soon, I like to come up with other ways to enjoy one of my favorite summer treats in the comfort of my air-conditioned house. These s’mores start with my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe and have graham crackers added to the batter. The marshmallows are broiled to make them all melty between the cookies—perfect for you indoor s’more lovers! But, if you do love s’mores over the campfire, bake the cookies ahead of time and roast the marshmallows the old-fashioned way!


1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
3⁄4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
31⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
11⁄4 cups semisweet or milk chocolate chips
4 whole graham crackers, broken up into small bite-size pieces (just over 1 cup)
About 18 large marshmallows


1. Place the melted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix until combined. Mix in the eggs and vanilla, then the salt and baking soda. With the mixer on low, add the flour, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Stir in the chocolate chips and broken graham cracker pieces. (The graham crackers will break up even more in the mixing process, ensuring graham cracker in almost every bite!)

2. Refrigerate the dough for 1 to 2 hours. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

3. Use a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop to drop balls of dough 2 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Flatten each one slightly with the palm of your hand.

4. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes, until the cookies start to get golden on the bottom and they lose their sheen. (If you like your cookies on the softer, underdone side, about 10 minutes is perfect. Cook 11 to 12 minutes for a more done cookie.) Cool 5 minutes on the cookie sheet, then remove to a rack to cool completely.

5. To make s’mores, place half the cookies upside down on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Set a large marshmallow on each cookie. Place under the broiler for just 30 to 60 seconds, until the marshmallows are toasty. Do not walk away from the oven—keep your eyes on them so they don’t burn! Remove from the oven and sandwich with a second cookie. (You can also use a kitchen torch, if you have one, to toast the marshmallows, or actually grill the marshmallows on sticks over an open fire before adding them to the cookie sandwich.) Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 4
days or frozen for up to 3 months. S’mores should be eaten immediately.

Tip! Change up the s’mores flavor by using chocolate or cinnamon graham crackers, or even chocolate-covered graham cracker cookies!

Note: These are large cookies. You can also make them with a smaller cookie scoop to end up with smaller sandwiches, but you will need to cut the large marshmallows in half so they fit on the cookie. Or you can use 2–3 mini marshmallows instead, depending on the cookie size.


  1. This cookbook looks dangerous! I am such a chocolate lover! There are so many tasty recipes in this cookbook.

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