I consider myself a well-versed cook. Perhaps even accomplished. Pots du crème? Sure! Bring them on! Strawberry cake with whipped cream topping? Great way to spend two days in the kitchen! Meringue dishes for homemade ice cream? Challenge accepted!
But I've been harboring a dark secret.
I know! I know! I know what you're wondering: "How is this possible? Virtually everyone who has set foot in a kitchen has made them!" I have no real answer for you. Maybe I didn't ever really have the desire for them. After all, you can buy them in a package if you really want them. Maybe because they weren't a challenge. Touted as being easy enough to make with kids, why would I have any interest? I rather enjoy challenge and people aren't normally particularly impressed if you announce you made some (although I suspect they will all too happily taste them for you). I guess the biggest reason might be because there are only three ingredients, yet two of those ingredients are rarely in my pantry.
Worlds collide in a funny way, though. A coworker of mine had also never made these treats before. Her proclamations of how easy they were, how non-smelly the melting marshmallows were (a concern of mine), and how much better homemade RKTs are (my new, hip abbreviation. Can we make this catch on?) all intrigued me. Mix that with an overabundance of Rice Krispies in the house (courtesy of fiendishly collecting rebates through the Ibotta app) and I decided I would bite the bullet, buy some marshmallows, and get to work.
I forgot a fun fact about me, though: when something is repeatedly heralded as being easy, my panic mode flips on. This was no different. As I read the directions, I was convinced I was missing something important. I even texted my coworker. "Am I reading this right? I don't have to bake these?" She confirmed that was correct, so I tried to convince myself that I could join the legions of cooks who whipped out this dessert unflinchingly. I gathered my ingredients:
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 1 bag (10 oz) marshmallows
- 6 cups Rice Krispies
Reading the directions for the umpteenth time, I confirmed I could melt the butter and marshmallows in the microwave for three minutes, stirring at the two minute mark. This is when sh*t got real (as the youth of today say) and I was instantly transported to Panicville (demonstrated as follows through pictures and captions)
Almost at the two minute mark: I've created that big marshmallow guy from Ghostbusters!
What do I do? What do I do? Why isn't it two minutes? I can't stop it yet!
The instructions said two minutes before stirring! If I stir sooner I will ruin everything!
There isn't enough butter and marshmallow to cover all this cereal!
How is that possible? I followed the directions!
I've ruined everything!
This mixture is SO THICK!
LOOK! The spoon can stand straight up in it!
If I keep stirring, this I'll give myself carpel tunnel syndrome and I won't be able to do anything for the rest of my life!
I'm ruining my whole life!
There is so much mixture here! How will it all fit into this pan?
This is the right pan. It's 9" x 13". This matches the dimensions in the recipe.
I'm going to have to get another pan and fresh parchment paper. What a waste! I'm ruining everything!
Well, it's all mashed in there. It all fit.
But I had to mash it down so hard, they will probably have to be renamed Rice Krispy Bricks.
Teeth will simultaneously shatter and get stuck in them.
I will ruin the lives of everyone I know.
They are thick and fluffy and sticky! Are they supposed to be that sticky?
Are they supposed to be that fluffy? Someone is going to take a big bite and asphyxiate themselves on my RKT.
I will have to call them Death Treats. No one will want to eat death treats.
I am ruining everything.
This made a massive pile!
A massive pile of something that I'm not even sure tastes good. What if they are terrible?
I'm ruining my reputation as a decent cook!
Never mind. They're delicious!
Nothing is ruined!
I imagine this experience is not nearly as harrowing for the normal person in the kitchen. And they seem to really be fool-proof! So if you have somehow managed to avoid making them up until now, I can highly recommend rectifying that! They are better than the packaged ones and my mind is now busily whirring along thinking of all the things I can mix into these bad boys! And toppings! And other cereals! Any suggestions?