I think this may be it with me and marshmallows for a while (probably…possibly…perhaps not), but really, you can’t go on a marshmallow run without addressing the obvious: s’mores! Which, btw, is one of the only two things I like about camping. The other one is campfires—I’m all for being out in nature, but when I’m done with that I want to sleep in a bed, and blow dry my hair in the morning.
Anyhoo, I dreamed up this recipe—which is essentially one giant s’more—on one of my Sunday night creative surges where I’m about two minutes from going to bed, then I think of something I NEED to make first thing in the morning. So, off to the grocery store at 11:30pm I go. What can I say…you’re welcome. 🙂
Go crazy with this one. I sure did.
Monster S’more Cake
Dessert | Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free
Prep time: 1 hour, 15 min Ready in: 8 hours
- Cooking spray
- 3 packages unflavored gelatin (vegetarian substitutions)
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 cups chocolate chips (dairy free if you like)
- 6 whole graham crackers (gluten-free versions are available–check your local co-op or health food store)
- Candy thermometer
- Parchment paper or tin foil
- Cookie sheet
- 3 mini springform pans (I used 4-inch ones, but you could probably use pans that are up to 6-inches across and just make slightly shallower layers—the marshmallow recipe should leave you with a little leftover using the smaller pans, anyway—so there’s some wiggle room there.)
- In a large mixing bowl, combine 1/2 of a cup of cold water with the packets of gelatin and allow to sit until gelatin forms, about 15 minutes.
- In a small saucepan on medium heat, combine the sugar and a 1/2 of a cup of cold water and stir until sugar has dissolved—about 3 to 5 minutes. Increase heat to bring mixture to a boil. Keep the mixture at a boil until the temperature reaches 240 degrees F on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat.
- Slowly pour sugar mixture into the bowl with the gelatin, simultaneously using a mixer on low. Gradually increase speed to high and continue whipping until the mix is very thick, about 15 minutes—imagine the consistency of pourable taffy. NOTE: A stand-up mixer is ideal for this type of recipe, but rest assured, you can do this with an electric hand mixer. I did it—it just requires a little coordination and comfortable shoes.
- Add vanilla to marshmallow mixture, then whip for another 30 seconds or so until it’s completely mixed in.
- Coat three mini springform pans with cooking spray.
- Pour marshmallow in the three pans, up to about 1 to 1-1/2 inches deep. Hold onto at least a quarter cup of marshmallow…
- Pour any extra marshmallow into a smaller dish coated with cooking spray. (Size and shape doesn’t really matter—you’ll just be cutting this up into little, irregular pieces for the topper.)
- Let marshmallow sit for about 6 hours, uncovered, until completely set.
- Sprinkle most of powdered sugar over a surface larger than the marshmallow rounds. (Reserve about 1/4 cup.)
- Remove marshmallows from springform pans, and one at a time, place them on the powdered sugar surface, fliping to coat both sides. And then, any way you can, coat the edges as well…I just rolled them like wheels.
- Prepare a cookie sheet by placing either tin foil or parchment paper over it, then dusting it with the reserved powdered sugar. Place marshmallow rounds on top.
- Crush graham crackers (reserve 1/2 of one for topper) into small pieces. I just used my hands, but you can also press the back of a spoon into them on a cutting board. Set aside.
- Over high heat, bring 1 to 2 inches of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low and place a bowl in the saucepan. Be sure the water doesn’t get displaced enough to spill over into the bowl.
- Pour in chocolate chips.
- Stir until completely melted.
- Spoon about 1/3 of chocolate on each marshmallow round (reserve 1 tablespoon of chocolate to drizzle over topper), and use the back of a spoon to spread the chocolate around, covering the whole round—push the chocolate all the way to the edges, allowing some to drip down the sides.
- Sprinkle 1/3 of crushed graham crackers on each round. (Depending on how big your rounds are, you may not need all the crumbs.)
- Refrigerate rounds until chocolate has completely hardened, about 30 minutes.
- To make topper, cut or tear extra marshmallows into small pieces until you have about 1/4 cup or so. (DON’T dust the sticky sides with powdered sugar.)
- Break reserved graham cracker into small pieces, and stick them to the non-powdered sides of the marshmallows. Set aside.
- Remove marshmallow rounds from refrigerator and use a sharp knife to trim any chocolate “puddles” off the bottom of two of the rounds. (The third one can be used for bottom layer, so those puddles will just sit flat on the plate—as opposed to sticking out the side like little chocolate wings if the round was used in the middle or on top.)
- On a serving plate, stack the three rounds.
- To make the topper, just place your marshmallow/graham cracker pieces into a little pile in the center of the top of the cake.
- Then, drizzle chocolate over the top.
- Return the cake to the refrigerator until the chocolate drizzle has hardened, about 15 minutes.
Put the cake out for a bit before serving so you can show off your monster s’moresing skills. Then to serve, take down the layers and slice into wedges.
They can be enjoyed as straight-up marshmallow bites, or you can use the wedges to garnish bowls of summer berries: