Monday, August 20, 2012

Project Brownies: S'mores... the Finale

I saved the best for last. 

For all three brownie projects I tried to  "up" the level of the add-ins each time. The Nutella was pretty subtle, the raspberries definitely changed the flavor of the whole brownie.. but these... these are a whole different story. These brownies up the ante. 
Regular Ingredients: Brownie Mix, Water, Eggs, Vegetable Oil
Special Guests: Graham Cracker Crust, Milk Chocolate Chips, Marshmallows

This brownie took a bit of thought before I dove in. I wasn't quite sure exactly how things would work since I was mixing different types of textures and substances together. It sounds a bit like a science project but, in a way, baking is very scientific. 
I decided to start with a graham cracker crust. I used 2 cups of pre-smashed graham crackers +  4 tablespoons of melted butter + 1 tablespoon of sugar for good measure. Mix it all up in a bowl & press into the bottom of a greased 9x13 pan. Bake it for about 10 minutes. 

After you bake the crust, add the regular brownie mix on top. I decided that the brownies alone were not enough "chocolate" for the chocolate layer in a s'more so I poured 1/2 the batter in... then added an entire bag of chocolate chips on top... then added the rest of the brownie batter on top of that. Then I put it in to bake. Note that the baking time for these brownies is going to be a bit longer than the standard 25 minutes. The brownies are not getting the heat from the bottom of the pan the way they would if the crust wasn't there so you'll have to bake it a bit longer. I would suggest to start with 30 minutes and then check it every 3-5 minutes until it is done. 
Eeeeeee! Now the best part!!!!

Once the brownies are done baking, take the pan out of the oven and switch it from "baking" to  "broiler."

Dump about 3/4 of a bag (or more) on top of your brownies and then place the pan under the broiler until your marshmallows are toasted. 
Seriously... this is the most important part. It is what elevates the brownies from good to unreal. The mallows get that caramelized flavor that only fire can provide. They become sweet and chewy and have just an amazing texture. So good.

The tricky part now is getting them cut and out of the pan. I decided to wait until they were completely cooled to try to cut them. It was not easy. The mallows like to stick to everything.... which is what makes them mallows. Anyway - I just powered through and tried to cut slow as to not pull off all the topping. Another suggestion would be to heat up your knife so it melts the marshmallows a bit before cutting - note, you'll probably need to rinse your knife a few times. Another way would be to lightly grease your knife (Pam, or something similar, works well) before cutting. Again, you'll probably have to rinse your knife a few times in the process. 

When all of the cutting is done you are left with a stupendous treat - S'More Brownies. 

Not to sound lame, but you'll definitely want s'more!
(Ok.. I knew it was going to be lame, and it is... but there had to be a s'more joke in there somewhere!!)

Cheers to the Cook!

S'more Brownies

1 box of brownie mix (I used Betty Crocker)

Ingredients for this mix:
2 eggs
1/4 cup water
2/3 cup vegetable oil

2 cups of graham cracker crumbs
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 tbsp white sugar

1 bag milk chocolate chips

1 bag mini marshmallows

Grease a glass 9x13 pan; heat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix graham cracker crumbs, melted butter & sugar together in a medium bowl. Press into the bottom of your greased pan. Bake for 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, mix brownie ingredients together in a large bowl with beaters until well combined. Once graham cracker crust has finished baking, empty half of the brownie mix onto the crust.  

Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.

Add the remaining half of the brownie mixture on top.

Bake for abut 30-40 minutes in the oven. Start with 30 minutes and check every 3-5 minutes for doneness. Brownies should be a bit firm to the touch but still quite moist when you take them out of the oven. 

Switch oven from Bake to Broil. Sprinkle marshmallows on top of brownies. Place under the broiler until mallows have achieved desired color. (This is like camp - some people like them barely brown. Some of us like them 2 small steps away from charcoal. Do what you like!)

Leave in the pan to cool.

Cut into desired size using a lightly greased knife & serve warm. Or store in an air-tight container for up to 3 days. Remember not to stack on top of each other or the mallows will all stick together and you'll have one really big s'more brownie... which is... really... bad... because then you'd have to eat... all of it... by yourself.. horrible.. 

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