S’mores (homemade!) by Mom De Cuisine

Do you have a bucket list? I do. Well, actually a culinary bucket list: all of the things I would like to make before I die.
Homemade marshmallows have been on that list for a while, and for the fourth of July, I thought it’s about time to cross them off. Since we are currently living abroad, we won’t have fire works or parades. However, I still wanted to do something special, so I thought it would be fun to make s’mores with the kids.

M couldn’t wait. She helped make the graham crackers, which were actually pretty easy and turned out great.

However, the marshmallows…..they were another story. I’ve read recipe after recipe and each claims that making your own marshmallows is so simple, only a nincompoop could possibly mess them up. I’m a nincompoop.

It took three recipes and three attempts to get it right. You see, you can’t really omit or substitute ingredients. Omitting corn syrup is not an option. Veggie Gel (a vegetarian alternative to gelatin) is just that, an alternative, not a substitute. Oh, and Jell-O, also can’t be used in place of unflavored gelatin. I’ve spent the week learning each of these lessons the hard way (or should I say the soft, goopy, sticky way.)

But now that I’ve learned all the ways not to make marshmallows, I can finally cross homemade marshmallows off of my bucket list (it was probably a first and a last for me!)

S’mores (homemade!) Recipe

Prep time 1 hour
Cook time 40 mins
Total time 1 hour 40 mins
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • For the graham crackers:
  • 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • About 1/4 cup raw sugar (optional)
  • For the marshmallows:
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup of cold water, divided
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup (dark works, but makes brown marshmallows)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • Seeds from 1 vanilla bean
  • Cooking spray
  • Confectioners sugar for dusting the pan and marshmallows (about 1/2 cup)
  • For the chocolate ganache:
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream

Preparation

  1. To make the crackers:
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk flours, wheat germ, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon in a medium bowl; set aside.
  3. Put butter, brown sugar, and honey into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add the flour mixture, and mix until combined.
  4. Turn out dough onto a floured surface, and divide into quarters. Roll out each piece between 2 sheets of floured parchment paper into rectangles about 1/8 inch thick. Refrigerate until firm (about 10 minutes.)
  5. Use a biscuit cutter to cut out the crackers and place on prepared cookie sheet. Sprinkle raw sugar on top, if using. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until browned and crisp. Cool 10 minutes and set aside.
  6. To make the marshmallows:
  7. Spray a baking dish lightly with cooking spray, then dust with confectioner’s sugar. Set aside.
  8. Combine gelatin and 1/2 cup of the water in the bottom of a stand mixer to allow gelatin to soften.
  9. Combine remaining water, granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a heavy bottomed pot over medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Bring the mixture to a boil, without stirring and cook until the melted sugar reaches 240 degrees on a candy thermometer, about 10 minutes.
  10. Pour the sugar mixture over the gelatin and mix until combined. Whisk the marshmallow mixture on high until it’s tripled in size, about 10 minutes. In another bowl, add vanilla beans to egg whites. Whisk until stiff peaks form. Mix egg whites into marshmallow mixture until just combined.
  11. Pour into prepared pan and dust the top with confectioner’s sugar. Chill at least three hours, but preferably overnight. Run a knife along the edges of the pan and invert onto a cutting board. Using a pizza cutter, cut marshmallows into 1 inch cubes. Store in an airtight container.
  12. To make the chocolate ganache:
  13. Add about an inch of water to a pot. Bring to a simmer and place a glass bowl on top of the pot, making sure that the water does not touch it. Combine chocolate and cream in the bowl and mix until the chocolate has melted and is smooth.
  14. To assemble the s’mores: Get coals on a grill smoking hot. Place a marshmallow on the end of a skewer and place over direct heat until the marshmallow starts to brown. Immediately place marshmallow on a graham cracker. On another graham cracker, spread chocolate ganache. Sandwich the crackers together and serve immediately.

Notes

Marshmallows can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Graham crackers can be stored in an airtight containter for up to 1 week.

Sources:

Graham cracker recipe slightly adapted from Martha Stewart’s Graham Crackers

Marshmallow recipe slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s Springy, Fluffy Marshmallows