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S'mores

Vanilla Bean Marshmallows
Adapted from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home
Makes 24 2½-inch square marshmallows

½ cup cold water, divided
Three ¼-ounce packets unflavored gelatin
2 cups granulated sugar
¾ cup corn syrup
¼ teaspoon salt
1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped and reserved
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting


1. Make marshmallows a day in advance: Spray an 11x17-inch baking pan lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Line pan with parchment paper and lightly spray parchment as well; set aside.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle gelatin over ¼ cup of water. Let soften for 5 minutes.
3.Meanwhile, combine remaining ¼ cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup, salt, and vanilla seeds in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Without stirring, continue to cook until syrup reaches 236F on a candy thermometer.
4. With the mixer on low, using a whisk attachment, slowly drizzle the hot syrup into the gelatin. Gradually turn the mixer up to high, beating until the mixture is thick, fluffy, and sticky, about 8 to 10 minutes. (The bowl will probably still be warm to the touch.)
5. Turn the mixture out onto the prepared baking sheet. (Don’t worry about trying to scrape it all out of the bowl. It’s not going to all come out, and you’ll just end up covered in marshmallow. Trust me.) With wet hands, spread the mixture to the edges and smooth the top. Cover with a sheet of parchment paper, lightly sprayed with cooking spray, and let stand overnight.
6. Once set, using a knife or a square cookie cutter, cut marshmallows into shapes. Toss in confectioners’ sugar to coat, tapping lightly to remove any excess.

Graham Crackers
Adapted from Cherry Tea Cakes and Smitten Kitchen
Makes about 52 2½-inch square crackers

2 ½ cups plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes, chilled
1/3 cup honey
5 tablespoons whole milk
2 tablespoons vanilla extract

Garnish:
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
4 ounces dark chocolate, melted and cooled slightly

1. Line baking sheets with parchment or silicone baking mats; set aside.
2. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in the bowl of an electric mixer, pulsing a few times to mix. Add butter and mix on low until it mixture resembles coarse meal. (Alternately, you can do this in a food processor.)
3. In a small bowl, whisk together milk, honey, and vanilla extract. Add to flour mixture and mix until dough just comes together. Divide dough in half, pat into discs, and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill dough rounds until firm, about 2 hours.
4. Using one dough round at a time, generously flour a clean work surface (the dough is pretty sticky, so keep flouring as needed), and roll the dough into a large rectangle about 1/8-inch thick. Using a 2 ½-inch square cookie cutter, cut out shapes and transfer to prepared baking sheets, about ½-inch apart. Gather and reroll scraps, chilling again if the dough gets too soft.
5. To create traditional graham cracker decorations, using the blunt side of a knife, gently press vertically down the center of the square. Then poke holes with the blunt end of a skewer on either side of the line. Sprinkle with granulated sugar. Chill baking sheets in the refrigerator until firm, about 1 hour more.
6. Preheat oven to 350F. Bake until lightly browned and firm to the touch, about 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet for several minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
7. Once graham crackers are cooled, assemble s'mores: In a microwave safe bowl, or a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt chocolate, stirring until smooth. Allow to cool slightly.
8. Spread about ½ teaspoon of melted chocolate on the bottom side of 1 graham cracker. Top with marshmallow, pressing gently to spread to the edges and adhere. Spread another ½ teaspoon of melted chocolate on top of the marshmallow and top with another graham cracker, pressing down gently. Let stand until chocolate is firm. (Or place in refrigerator for half an hour until chocolate is set. Bring back to room temperature before serving.)

Brought to you by The Busty Baker (http://www.bustybaker.com)
Original Post: http://ladolcivita.blogspot.com/2011/07/homemade-smores.html


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