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Saturday, June 8, 2013

Summertime is s'more time!

Even though I am always looking for new recipes and yummy things to make, I rarely watch cooking shows. I watched Cupcake Wars once because a neighborhood bakery was competing.  They were the first ones out of the competition so that was sad.  So, last night I saw a rerun of that Jeff Foxworthy cooking competition.  I don't even know what it's called, and don't care enough to look it up.  It was kind of cute, because it's all these regular folks who do something else for a living, but really love to bake.  The producers were careful to ensure there was something for everybody:  The firefighter, the guy who loves his truck, the guy who thinks he's the best at everything but it kind of a douche, the professional woman, the southern belle, the college student, the mom with pearls, and the crybaby.  (Stop crying!  jeez.)

Last night one of the recipes they had to make was gourmet s'mores, using a recipe of one of the judges.  They had to make graham crackers, and chocolate for the top, and even homemade marshmallow!  They looked amazing.  I had previously tried my hand at making marshmallows... epic failure by the way, which is why you didn't hear about it.  But I didn't really have all the ingredients and I was trying to sub.  I don't think you can sub anything when making marshmallows.  They are pretty touchy.  Because I knew www.thegraciouspantry.com had a (mostly) clean marshmallow recipe, and www.thenakedkitchen.com had a graham cracker recipes, and cripe, who CAN'T melt chocolate? I could make my own CLEAN version of s'mores!  YAY!  Gracious Pantry says the marshmallows aren't totally clean because of the gelatin.  Ah well, you can't have everything and, let's be honest, if you can get this close, isn't that a win!?  It is in my book.

I think on the show they had four hours to do the whole thing.  Let me tell you, it will not take that long!  I think it took me about an hour or an hour and a half from start to finish.  

First, make the graham crackers.  Because it takes a long time for the marshmallow to get really fluffy and firm, go ahead and start that while your crackers are baking.  Then once you have the marshmallow on the crackers, melt your chocolate.  Don't dip into the chocolate too soon, but allow it to cool a bit so your marshmallow stays firm.  I will remind you later.

FIRST!  Make the graham crackers.  




I have made slight modifications to The Naked Kitchen's ingredients list and directions because I wasn't making regular crackers.  Instead, I opted to roll them and cut them into little circles, as they did on the show.  So if you follow the link above, I chose not to add the egg wash and coconut crystals to the top before baking since I would be putting marshmallow fluff and chocolate on top.  I still poked holes in the top with a fork because I didn't know if that might keep them from cracking or was just for decoration or what.

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour (the coarser the grind the better)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (for a cinnamon graham use 2 tsp)
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 tbsp pasture butter, cold and cut into small cubes
  • 1 egg white
  • 6 tbsp raw coconut crystals
  • 2 tbsp raw honey or coconut nectar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.
Add the butter and with your fingers, fork or pastry cutter work the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles a texture like coarse wet sand.  (It will seem very dry, but if you dig into it with your hands you will feel the "wet sand" texture.  Don't add any extra ingredients thinking it is too dry.)
In a small bowl whisk together 1 egg white, 6 tablespoons coconut crystals, honey and vanilla.
Add the egg white mixture to the flour mixture and stir until you have a crumbly dough (like a pie crust dough).
Sprinkle a little flour onto a piece of parchment paper the size of a baking sheet. Place the dough onto the parchment and sprinkle a little more flour over the top. Roll the dough into a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. 
Cut out biscuits using a small round cookie cutter.  (I only had a small juice glass that was the size I wanted so used that).
Transfer to a fresh sheet of parchment paper on a cookie sheet.

Bake 12 minutes or until browned.
Immediately remove to a wire cooling rack. The crackers will crisp as they cool.

SECOND!  While the crackers are baking, start your fluff.




On the link above, The Gracious Pantry then puts them in a dish and makes actual marshmallows.  I stopped when it got to that part because I wanted fluff and, let me tell you, this was some serious fluff!  I think it's important to make sure you have a very clean bowl and beaters.  Because it was like making meringue, I even chilled mine a bit.  I thought it might help.  Not sure it made a difference, though. The fluff needs to be used right away if you want to pipe it through a pastry bag.  If you have leftover, I suggest you follow the link (above) directions on making them into marshmallows.

Ingredients:

  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 2 packets unflavored gelatin (total of 1/2 ounce)
  • 1 cup honey 
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 

Directions:

Stir gelatin into water in a small bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds.
While that’s in the microwave, pour the honey into a large mixing bowl.
Add vanilla.
Add warm gelatin/water mixture.
Blend on high for 12-15 minutes until the mixture is white and fluffy and has quadrupled in size.

Transfer about 2/3 of the fluff to a clean pastry bag and pipe onto cooled cracker.  Get almost to the edges and make sure you put a good helping on each one.



LAST, but most certainly not least!  Melt some chocolate for dipping

Ingredients:
1/2 cup good quality dark chocolate chips 
1 TBSP coconut oil

Melt chocolate and coconut oil together to make of good dipping consistency.  Allow to cool slightly before dipping so fluff doesn't melt.

Once cool enough (but not hardening), dip the fluff covered crackers into the chocolate, coating the fluff and top edge of the crackers.  Cool in the refrigerator to allow chocolate to harden.  If you like, you can make a double batch of chocolate and dip again once cooled.  I'm going to!



And because once I get started I just can't quit, I decided to make more graham crackers the next day.  I dipped the tops of the graham crackers in melted chocolate, allowed to cool in the fridge a little, then piped marshmallow on top.  I then dusted them with unsweetened coconut!  Snowballs!!!!



1 comment:

  1. Awesome pics and description. I'm going to try making graham crackers.

    ReplyDelete