S'mores BrowniesAugust 18, 2014
So we've dealt with savoury portion of the camping menu, let's get down to what's really important. The s'mores.
Only on this very recent camping trip did I finally discover what a s'more was all about (and combat some weird compulsion I have to called them sch'mores like some range of Ikea lampshades).
What stuck with me, apart from copious amounts of melted marshmallow, was the sweet and salty combination. Usually reserved for fancy pants confections like sea salted caramel, the salt and sugar combo is always a winner. It was the salt in the Graham Crackers (Digestive biccys for the Brits) that made these so s'moreish, without that savoury tang I'm pretty sure my teeth would have bled from the sugar overdose.
Bearing the salt, chocolate and toasted marshmallow combination in mind whilst compensating for most modern kitchen's lack of an integral campfire, I made up some S'more Brownies.
Ingredients: Makes 16 bars or 32 bitesized portions*
Graham Cracker/Digestive Biscuit- (you can use pre-bought or make your own as I did)
1/2 cup/60g flour
1/2 cup/40g old fashioned oats
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup/100g soft brown sugar
1/2 cup/110g butter (salted)
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 cup/200g white sugar
1 cup/220g soft brown sugar
1/2 cup/110g butter (melted)
1 1/4 /160g cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1/2 cup/60g flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups/140g marshmallows
1/2 cup/130g chocolate buttons or split into small chunks (I used Hershey)
If you re making your Graham Cracker/Digestives then start with these.
Combine the flour, oats, butter, sugars, baking powder and salt in a food processor and pulse until everything is combined. You can do this by hand but it will be a lot more work, start off by smashing and smushing the butter into the oats and flour then work through all the dry ingredients until it's well mixed.
Drip in a little milk at a time until you have a dough, bring it together in a ball but do not over work it. The if your mixture is super sticky, pop it in the fridge for a couple of minutes to harden up the butter. Place the dough on a sheet of waxed paper with another sheet on on top. Roll out the dough to about 1/2 inch/1 and 1/2 cm thick, peel back the papers and pop onto a VERY well greased baking tray.
Bakin in the oven at 150 for about 10-12 minutes. The edges will be a golden brown and the center golden, it will still be soft to the touch but harden when it cools. It's better to take it out too soon, let it cool and test the hardness of the cookie/biscuit, than over cook it in the first place!
Let the cookie/biscuit cool and harden whilst you prepare the rest of the brownie filling.
Tumble the marshmallows into a metal dish, you will be using the grill/broiler to toast them so you don't want them in a dish that will shatter under direct heat. If you have a cook's blow tourch you can use this, which ever method you use, go gently, never take your eyes off them and have some water nearby just in case. When marshmallows catch fire they go quickly, when by a campfire outdoors you can abandon them in the flames or just drop them. This is clearly not an option indoors!
If you are grilling/broiling them, have a large baking sheet handy so that if they do catch you can smoother them in the pan with the baking sheet, turn out the heat then remove them from the oven safely.
If in doubt leave them untoasted!
Once toasted a light golden, brown leave them to cool whilst you mix up the brownie batter.
Whisk the eggs into a fluffy froth and add in the remaining dry ingredients and melted butter.
Break up your chocolate and sprinkle it into the brownie pan, I used a 2 inch/5cm deep baking tray that was about the size of an A4/letter sheet of paper.
Rip up your toasted mashmallows and poke into the pan with the chocolate chunks/buttons, if you are finding the marshmallow super sticky dust your fingers with icing/confectioners sugar.
Break up the cookie/biscuit into chunks that are no smaller than an inch square and spread these throughout the pan then pour oven the brownie batter.
Shake and tip the plan to dribble the batter all over the s'more ingredients and makes sure there are not empty nooks.
Bake for about an hour at 350F.
Test the brownie after about 45 minutes to check on it's progress but sticking a sharp knife or skewer into the middle. Be sure to poke a bit that's mostly brownie batter rather than marshmallow as these will be mushy form the heat. If the skewer comes out clean then they are done.
Let them cool in the pan and resist the urge to try and cut them until they are COMPLETELY cool. These are a seriously ooey gooey treat and MUST be completely cool until you try and divide them up or them will just mush under the knife.
*I started by cutting mine into 16 bar shaped portions but as they were so rich I then divided them up into 32 bite sized portions... this did not stop me eating 5 of them though.