There are so many things that I love about the UK, but one area where North Americans clearly have an edge is in outdoor food. I’m talking about BBQ, I’m talking about campfires, and in this post I’m talking about smores (or s’mores).
Talk to anyone who has ever camped, or been a scout or guide, in North America. They will have experienced those delicious, and diabetes inducing, s’mores. They are sweet, sticky and crunchy – all enhanced with the heat of a fire.
I must emphasise here smores are a North American ‘food’, as Brits just don’t have the right ingredients. First, it needs crisp and sweet honey graham crackers. They are nearly impossible to buy over here, even the graham flour I purchased to make some was from Sweden. Before you think about it, no digestive biscuits cannot be substituted here. There needs to be big, gooey marshmallows. Again, only in the ‘American’ food section of grocery stores might have these, as marshmallows in the UK only tend to be miniature. Finally the chocolate, and it is contentious. The classic variety to use in smores is Hershey, which is nearly every way inferior to British chocolate. Except its high sugar content means it melts much easier.
So, how to overcome this deficit?
Make it from scratch. I sourced graham flour from Sweden, and raided American food stores for the Hershey chocolate. The marshmallows, well those are completely homemade. The recipe is below, and while it takes time the outcome is worth it. The only downside, not great weather for a fire. So, instead the marshmallows were blowtorched. To be fair, I’m in the UK, it would not be correct if they were just like home. In any case, they made for a brilliant dessert.
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1⅓ cups graham flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup softened salted butter
- 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 Tablespoon Golden Syrup
- 1. In one bowl, whisk together both flours, the baking soda and salt; set aside.
- 2. In a large bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, syrup and honey, and beat at medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed just until blended and the dough comes together.
- 3. Transfer the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap, press into a disc, and wrap tightly. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- 4. When ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- 5. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a 1/8-inch thickness and cut into 3-inch squares. Transfer to the baking sheet, spacing the crackers at least ¾-inch apart, gather any scraps, re-roll, and cut out more cookies. Use a fork to make some indents in the top of each cracker.
- 6. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes and then rotate the baking sheet. Bake for another 6 to 8 minutes, or until the cookies are dark golden brown and just firm to the touch. Let cool for a minute on the baking sheets, then transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool completely (they will crisp up as they cool).