Can it possibly be Labor Day already? The last of summer. The last hurrah. No more beach picnics. Kids are in school. Sigh.
But, even if you can’t have campfires (like here in the Sierras because of the drought) or it’s too cold to go to the beach, you can still make these Indoor Gourmet S’mores.
Here in the Sierras it’s already beginning to feel like fall. In fact, the other day when my daughter and I decided to go to breakfast, it looked like there was snow on the ground. As it turned out, it was just a lot of hail, but the temps had stayed in the 30’s overnight, so the hail just piled up and never melted.
I took my daughter to my favorite place for breakfast, Bert’s Cafe, where I had Eggs Benedict with fresh fruit and sliced tomatoes. Everything is made from scratch including the delicious sauce and the sausage! It’s unusual to find a restaurant that doesn’t use a package mix for the Eggs Benedict sauce and the gravy for the biscuits.
My daughter had the “Cowgirl Breakfast” which involved a home made Biscuit, poached egg, sausage gravy and home fries. The biscuit is huge and made from scratch, along with the gravy. She didn’t finish it…
Then we headed out to the Farmers Market because I needed to pick up some fruit or vegetables for my food photography class and to get some peaches for my daughter.
The peaches not only looked good, but they smelled delicious. I decided I would try to incorporate them into a photo for my class.
This was my final result.
I do love to go to the Farmers Market and having my daughter with me was an extra treat. Plus, she knows produce after working in the grocery industry since she was 16.
However, for Labor Day, I wanted to have something that would go with the last celebration of summer. It’s not that fruits and vegetables don’t go with Labor Day, but I wanted to try a simple sweet. And since, Saturday is also National Toasted Marshmallow Day, I thought S’mores would be fun. I would have liked to make some fancy S’mores down at the beach, but because of the extreme drought, we are prevented from making camp fires. Second best thing would be making S’mores in the oven so you can have them anytime.
I wanted to create a dessert that would be easy to make, delicious for everyone in the family and also one that you could dress up and serve to guests, if you wanted.
So here’s my basic recipe:
Indoor Gourmet S’mores
Makes 6 individual servings
- 8 full graham crackers
- 5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1-2 Tbsp. cream
- 3 large marshmallows, cut in half
- 2 slices bacon, baked until done
- 1 Hershey milk chocolate bar (optional)
- 1 Tbsp. cream (optional)
- 1/8 tsp or less cayenne (optional)
- sea salt or other finishing salt (optional)
- Chop two slices of bacon into small pieces. If the bacon was not already crisp, throw into a pan and cook until crispy. Remove and drain on paper towels.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Use food processor to grind graham crackers into crumbs.
- Add sugar and pulse until just mixed
- With food processor running, pour melted butter into food processor tube until mixed thoroughly.
- Spray a 6-muffin pan with Pam or grease with butter
- Remove one Tbsp. graham mixture to save for later. Divide remainder of graham mixture among the 6 muffin holes. Tap down with the back of a spoon until compacted.
- Bake in oven for 4-5 minutes until edges are brown. Watch carefully. Remove to rack to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, put dark chocolate chips into a small microwave bowl or cup. Microwave at 20 second intervals on 80% power, stirring at every 20 seconds. When chocolate is mixable, add 1 tablespoon cream. Continue microwaving until chocolate is melted. Stir cream in until smooth. If chocolate is still a little thick, add some more cream. Chocolate should be smooth, but not runny.
- Divide chocolate amongst the 6 muffin cups.
- Sprinkle some bacon over the chocolate. Save some for sprinkling over the finished product.
- Top with 1/2 marshmallow.
- Turn oven to broil and place muffin tin under broiler on second rack from the top. Broil for 1-2 minutes, until tops of marshmallows are brown and toasty. Watch carefully because it happens fast.
- Remove from oven and let sit for a few minutes. Remove carefully from muffin tin and place on individual serving plates. Sprinkle with remaining graham cracker crumbs and top with more of the chopped bacon.
If you would like to go over the top, add this
- Break up Hershey bar and microwave at 20 second intervals on 70-80% power, stirring, until melted. Add 1-2Tbsp. cream and mix until smooth and a little runny.
- Add less than 1/8 tsp. cayenne to taste. Be careful, it sneaks up on you. It should taste like smooth wonderful chocolate and then at the end have a little kick. So add gradually and taste. Remember that this is a very sweet dessert, so it can stand a little spice.
- Place Smore creations (from above) in a nice glass. (I used a retro martini glass.) I placed some dark chocolate chips in the bottom to fill up the little “V” and then I put the S’mores on top.
- Drizzle Hershey bar melted chocolate over the top.
- Sprinkle with left over bacon
- Sprinkle with sea salt.
- Serve and wait for the clapping.
Look at those layers: graham cracker crust, dark chocolate ganache, smoky bacon, gooey marshmallow, a few more graham crumbs, milk chocolate ganache with cayenne, more bacon and a little sprinkling of salt (to cut the sweetness.) Looks pretty durn tasty and it was.
Here are a few pics on preparation.
Keeping it simple, and more like campfire S’mores, pop it on a paper or bamboo plate and serve it up at your barbecue without all the fancy sauces and serve ware. It’s good either way.
Have a great Labor Day Weekend and Enjoy! these S’mores anytime, but especially on National Marshmallow day (August 30).