Today, we’re making Spirit Bear S’mores from scratch, with Honey Marhsmallows and Easy-to-make Honey Graham Cracker Cookie Cut-Outs. Since the dough is egg-free, the kids can snack on it as they cut out their cookies! We would have made our own bear-shaped chocolates, too, I suppose, but the kids have this tendency not to actually eat “cute” chocolates such as bears and bunnies, because they find them too much like the real thing – and so we just opted for good old fashioned Hershey bars. The marshmallow recipe, by the way, may appear a little tedious, but it’s actually quite fun and easy to make. And it doesn’t really take that much time. We’ve made marshmallows at least four times now, over the years, and always with ease and success. You’ll need a good candy thermometer and a mixer…but that’s about it in terms of fancy kitchen gizmos. Best of luck! And Cheers!!!
- 2 eggwhites
- 1+ c icing sugar
- 3 1/2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
- 1 c cold water divided into two half cups
- 1 1/2 c granulated sugar
- 1/2 c honey
- 1/2 c clear corn syrup
- a pinch of salt
- 2 tsp vanilla
- Additional honey for drizzling [optional]
- Separate egg whites from yolks. (Save yolks for another recipe.)
- In a cold mixing bowl and with cold beaters, beat egg whites into stiff peaks.
- Transfer the stiff-peaked whites to another bowl, cover, and refrigerate.
- Clean the mixing bowl and beaters (unless you have a spare!)
- Liberally BUTTER a 9×13 pan (you can use the wrapper from the butter in the graham cracker recipe below) and liberally dust the greased pan with icing sugar.
- Place 3.5 packets of gelatin and .5 cup of the cold water into the bottom of the mixing bowl of a stand mixer and let sit.
- The kids will enjoy watching it become a gooey sticky alien shape.
- Fill a thick-bottomed saucepan with that other .5 cup of cold water, the granulated sugar, honey, corn syrup and salt.
- Stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved.
- Then, boil over medium heat without stirring for approximately 10 minutes.
- Watch for the mixture to bubble, thicken, and clear. Be patient.
- When a candy thermometer reaches 240F, remove from heat and pour on top of the thickened gelatin.
- Mix the gelatin and sugar mixture on low for a few moments. It will be hot, so best have the adult take charge.
- Gradually adjust the mixer to higher and higher speeds and let mix for 5-6 minutes.
- Watch it circle round! The sugar will turn into a marshmallow fluff!
- Add vanilla and stiffened egg whites, and mix for another minute.
- Pour half of the fluff into the prepared dish. It usually spreads out evenly on its own, but use a spatula or icing spreader if you wish.
- [Optional] Drizzle over the top of this layer of fluff with a very thin swirl-pattern of honey.
- Pour the rest of the fluff into the prepared dish.
- [Optional] Drizzle over the top of the fluff with a very thin swirl-pattern of honey.
- Using a wire strainer or a mesh tea ball dust the top of the marshmallow wtih additional icing sugar.
- Refrigerate for at least two hours, until stiffened.
- Loosen the edges of the marshmallow with a butter knife.
- Overturn the marshmallow onto a cutting board.
- Use a mini- or small-sized bear-shaped cookie cutter to cut out of the marshmallows (you waste marshmallow this way)
- OR, cut the marshmallows into cubes with a large knife.
- Dredge the sticky sides of the individual marshmallows in a bowl of icing sugar if desired.
Honey Graham Cracker Cookie Cut-Outs
- 1 1/2 c all purpose flour
- 1 c whole wheat flour
- [may also be evened out to 1 1/4 c of each type of flour]
- 1/2 c brown sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 c unsalted butter chilled and cubed
- 1/4 c water
- 1/3 c honey
- Heat oven to 350.
- Pulse the flours, sugar, spices, baking soda, and salt in a food processor until just combined.
- Add the cold cubes of butter and pulse until the mixture becomes a coarse meal.
- Add the water and the honey and process gently until a dough forms.
- [If the dough is still super-sticky, form into balls and refrigerate for an hour.]
- Divide into two balls.
- Roll the balls of the dough between sheets of wax or parchment paper to .25-in thickness.
- Cut the dough into bear shapes with cookie cutters.
- Bake your grahams on parchment lined sheets for 12-14 minutes, until slightly brown on the edges.
- [Note: if you are having a "sticky" time with the dough, just roll it into a large flat rectangle and underbake just slightly. IMMEDIATELY cut shapes into the crackers with the bear shaped cutter. WORK QUICKLY ! and BE CAREFUL! Wear a glove. The cutter will conduct heat from the grahams and the cookie sheet. Let the crackers cool right there in the pans for a while. Save the excess from around the cut-outs for graham cracker crumbs and ice-cream topping.]
- Cool on pans for a few minutes, then cool completely on wire racks.
Spirit Bear S’mores!
You know the drill!!!
Place a square of chocolate on top of the Graham Cracker Cookie Cut-Out.
[Optional] Microwave for a few seconds.
Grill a Marshmallow or place the marshmallow on top of the chocolate topped cookie and microwave or broil for a few seconds.
Top with another graham cracker cookie.