Is it Summer yet? Maybe not officially, but after Memorial day it feels like summer break for most folks. Time to enjoy being outdoors whether it be time away on vacation, or just getting outside in your own backyard. When my kids were growing up we would make s’mores using the simple ingredients of store bought graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey bars. I’ve been making marshmallow creme for several years and always wondered how s’mores would taste with that delicious whipped creme. Then I thought why not go all the way and make graham crackers too. And you know what . . . they turned out great. I had my doubts, but I am pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to put together and how tasty they are. The marshmallow creme recipe makes approximately 6 cups, more than enough for the graham crackers and chocolate. No worries, there are so many recipes to use marshmallow creme. Some of my favorites are dark chocolate cake with marshmallow creme icing, s’mores blondies, or rice crispy treats!
I found a great recipe from “Brown Eyed Baker” which I used as a guide. I have found through trial and error that the altitude here in Albuquerque has affected my baking and I have to make adjustments. For this recipe I needed more moisture in order for the cookie batter to hold together. I started with all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, salt, baking soda, dark brown sugar, honey and unsalted butter. Not pictured is the addition of whole milk.
Mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt together. Add about 1/3 of the flour mix at a time and mix on low just until blended. Continue adding in the dry mix until all has been incorporated. I found that the mix was too dry to stick together and added a tablespoon at a time (3 tablespoons total) of whole milk until the batter was easy to form. Transfer to a zip lock bag and press into a large rectangle.
I bought a 2 1/2 inch square cookie cutter to form the graham crackers, however you can use a pastry cutter to cut the dough into squares or rectangles if you prefer. Let the dough adjust to room temperature for 10 minutes so that it will be easier to roll out. Sprinkle flour on a work surface and roll half the dough into a rectangle, making sure to sprinkle flour as needed so that it doesn’t stick to the work surface.
If you want to take the time, use a wooden skewer to poke holes in each square to resemble graham crackers. Place cookies in a pre-heated 350 degree oven. Bake 10 minutes then rotate the pans and continue cooking 6 – 8 minutes until they are golden brown.
Leave the egg whites for now and go over to the stove, set up a medium heavy bottomed saucepan and add the water, sugar and corn syrup. Fit a candy thermometer or a use a digital thermometer while boiling the mixture to gauge your temperature. The mixture will turn into a syrup that when combined with the egg whites turn into the tastiest marshmallow creme.
Refresh the egg whites, beating on medium for 30 seconds or so. While the mixer is going, begin pouring the syrup into the bowl as it mixes in with the egg whites. When all the syrup has been added, stop to scrape the sides of the bowl then continue mixing at medium high for another 5 minutes. The mixture will expand and fluff into a beautiful white creme.
For s’mores, choose your chocolate. Joe likes dark chocolate while I like milk chocolate. We found that 2 mini Hershey bars fit perfectly on these graham crackers. Heat in the microwave for 20 seconds to melt chocolate and add a dollop of marshmallow creme. If you want toasted s’mores, arrange your graham crackers on a baking sheet and add a dollop of marshmallow creme. Place under the hot broiler for a few seconds until the marshmallow cream browns on top. Beware, the creme will spread under the broiler unlike a marshmallow. Place chocolate on top and enjoy!
S'mores from Scratch
Graham Crackers (Inspired by (Brown Eyed Baker)
1 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
1 1/3 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
2 sticks (1 Cup) Unsalted Butter, room temperature
2/3 cup Dark Brown Sugar
3 tablespoons Honey
2 – 3 tablespoons Whole Milk, if needed
In a medium bowl, whisk together all purpose and wheat flours, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the butter, dark brown sugar and honey. Beat at medium speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add approximately 1/3 of the dry mix at a time, beating on low speed after each addition until all the flour mix has been incorporated. If the dough is too dry add whole milk 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough comes together. Place dough into a zip lock bag and form into a rectangle. Refrigerate dough 2 hours or up to 5 days.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Lightly flour a work surface. Divide the dough in half and roll out making sure to sprinkle flour when needed in order to keep from sticking. Roll out dough to 1/8 thickness. Use a square cookie cutter or use a pastry cutter to cut out the size and shape of cracker you want. Place the cut out squares on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat approximately 3/4 inches apart. If desired, poke holes in dough using a wooden skewer.
Bake cookies for 10 minutes then rotate the pan and bake an additional 6 – 8 minutes. The cookies should be golden brown and slightly soft to the touch. Let cool on baking sheet one minute then transfer to a cooling rack. Cookies will crisp as they cool. Store in an airtight container with a lid.
Marshmallow Creme (adapted from Bright Eyed Baker)
3 Egg Whites
1/2 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
1/3 cup Water
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Sugar, divided
3/4 cup Corn Syrup
1 teaspoon Vanilla
Add egg whites to the bowl of a stand mixer. Sprinkle with cream of tartar. Beat on medium speed and add 2 tablespoons of sugar while the mixer is running. Increase the speed to medium high until the eggs become frothy with soft peaks. Set aside.
Combine water, remaining sugar and corn syrup in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Fit the pan with a candy thermometer or use a digital thermometer to gauge the temperature. Bring the mixture to a boil and begin stirring . Cook the syrup and continue stirring as the temperature rises. Boil until the temperature reaches 240 degrees. Once the syrup reaches 240 degrees, remove from heat.
Start the mixer on the second speed for 30 seconds to refresh the egg whites. Begin pouring the syrup into the bowl as it is mixing. Increase speed to medium high and beat for 5 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add vanilla. Beat for 1 more minute. The mixture should be creamy and hold it’s shape. Store in an airtight container with a lid and refrigerate.
Makes 6 cups.
Hershey’s Chocolate Bars
To assemble s’mores, layer graham crackers with chocolate bars. Add a dollop of marshmallow creme and top with a graham cracker. You can melt the chocolate in a microwave. To make a toasted s’more, place the assembled bars, minus the top graham cracker under a broiler for 30 seconds or until the marshmallow creme becomes a toasted brown. Top with graham cracker and enjoy.
Yes, it was delicious!