Friday, April 26

S'mores Brownies

Last weekend we had some friends over to watch the Lyrid meteor shower in our backyard. Since it was a bit chilly, we decided to light ourselves a campfire and make ourselves some s'mores. I can't tell you how relaxing it was to just sit outside, away from the TV and iPhones, and just admire God's creation. When I was little I used to be fascinated with the night sky. I don't remember when I stopped paying attention to it, but I know it was sometime after moving to the DC metro, where the light pollution makes it difficult to make out all but the brightest stars.

We're a bit removed from the city now, and I do remember the first time I looked up at the night sky from our new house and being shocked at how many stars I could see. It brought back that old feeling of wonder that I thought had just passed away from old age. I suspect there will be many nights spent in the backyard with my daughter now, huddled around a fire, roasting marshmallows, and gazing up at the stars.

This is what inspired me to create my S'mores Brownies recipe.

S'mores Brownies
Marshmallow Batter*
1 egg white
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup raw or white sugar
2 tbsp water
1/4 cup honey
1/4 tsp vanilla

Graham Cracker Topping
5 whole graham cracker sheets
1 tbsp raw or white sugar
2 tbsp butter, melted
Brownie Batter
1/2 cup raw or white sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup white whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup milk chocolate chips
Marshmallow Batter

1. In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form.
2. Put the sugar, water, and honey into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Clip on a candy thermometer and cook until the firm ball stage (246 degrees F), about 5 minutes or so. Remove from heat.
3. Turn the beaters on low speed and slowly drizzle in the honey mixture into the egg whites Once fully incorporated, turn the speed to high and beat the mixture until light and fluffy – like marshmallow fluff: 5-10 minutes. Set aside.
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
2. Grease an 8x8 inch square pan or 11x7 inch brownie pan. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar and butter. Cook over medium heat until boiling. Remove from heat and stir in semi-sweet chocolate chips until melted and smooth. Mix in the eggs and vanilla.
3. Combine the flour and baking soda; stir into the chocolate mixture. Stir in milk chocolate chips. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.
4. Distribute the marshmallow batter in 8 dollops over batter in the pan. Swirl in with a knife or spatula.
Graham Cracker Topping
1. Place graham crackers in a plastic bag and crush to fine crumbs. Mix crumbs with sugar, then add melted butter and mix well. Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs evenly over top of brownie batter.
2. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until brownies set up.
Yield: 18 brownies Calories per serving: 270

*If desired, 1 cup marshmallow fluff may be substituted for the marshmallow batter.