Right now it’s -10 degrees in Chicago (aka #Chiberia) and I am fantasizing about sitting in front of a roaring fire. I don’t have a fireplace so my Vornado space heater under my desk will have to do for now! But if I did have a fireplace, I’d surely be popping some corn or making some toasty s’mores. The perfect fuel to keep warm through this bitter, winter night.
Since this fantasy is not going to happen right now, the next best thing is a microwaveable vessel filled with a deliciously-portioned-for-one s’mores mug cake. Recently, I’ve started playing around with mug cake versions of traditional baked goodies. I’ve been surprised how well the microwave can “bake” some individual cakes and brownies – and I think you’ll find this s’mores mug cake will definitely satisfy a craving for chocolate, graham cracker and hot marshmallow.
Find your largest microwaveable mug; I recommend one that can hold at least 16 ounces. Coat it with non-stick spray for easy cleanup, then mix all the ingredients together in the mug just until combined. Zap it on HIGH in your microwave for about 90 seconds and voila! You’ve got a campfire treat courtesy of your microwave.
Pair a s’mores mug cake with a cup of steaming hot cocoa and you’ll be ready to face the polar vortex head on!
If you ever went camping as a kid, you probably made s’mores with the classic Hershey’s milk chocolate bars, graham crackers and toasted marshmallows. And if you did, you probably became (like me) addicted to the iconic flavor combination. So much so that anytime you can recapture that flavor, that special feeling in a recipe you can make in your own kitchen that you jump at the chance. Am I right?
S’mores remind any of us over the age of 35 of a simpler time. Food manufacturers know that, which is why you see so many s’mores flavored versions of products and those gigantic store displays that put all three key ingredients together conveniently. I know I immediately reach for them, even though I haven’t been camping in decades! And I doubt many of us are still going camping, so I’m assuming we’re all just toasting the marshmallows in the fireplace or over the top of our gas cook tops – quietly enjoying s’mores in the “virtual campgrounds” inside our homes.
This recipe for cinnamon s’mores bark captures the core ingredients of a traditional s’more and adds a pinch of cinnamon for a modern twist. I will admit that using un-toasted marshmallows means that it cannot truly capture the smoky flavor of a burnt marshmallow inside a gooey, sticky s’more that you remember eating in front of the camp fire. But it’s still quite delicious. And if I can figure out how to toast the marshmallows without melting the chocolate bark holding it all together, I will share that with all of you. Or if you discover a way, please share as well. Until then, we’ll just have to bear the burden (not!) of un-toasted marshmallows in our s’mores bark.
Gently melt the bittersweet chocolate over very low heat, just until it barely melts. You can do this over a hot water bath or in a skillet. I prefer the microwave, heating the chocolate in 30-second intervals just until it starts melting. Then stir with spatula (chocolate will continue to melt as you stir) until completely smooth.
Spread the chocolate on a parchment-lined baking sheet into (approximately) an 8' by 12' rectangle. Allow the chocolate to set, but not harden completely.
Melt the milk chocolate in the same way. Then mix half of the crushed graham crackers thoroughly in the milk chocolate. Spread the chocolate-graham cracker mixture over the bittersweet chocolate layer.
Sprinkle marshmallows and remaining graham cracker crumbs on top, gently pressing them in before they set. Allow the candy to cool until hardened.
Break or cut into chunks. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week (or freeze for longer storage).
Adapted from a recipe on the King Arthur Flour website.