S’mores are one food that evokes so many memories of summer for me. The combination of graham cracker, chocolate and cooked marshmallow take me flying back to summer days of my childhood at the big cookouts we would have with a group of family friends. There were grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, pasta salad (yum), baked beans (yuck) and there were always, always bonfire s’mores. It’s funny looking back now because I really didn’t like s’mores all that much then, but it didn’t stop me from eating them…anything for the chocolate, you know. I think I’m just too particular about the way I like my marshmallows cooked. Just light golden, not too browned and definitely not charred. Since then I have found lots and lots of s’mores desserts I love (not to mention many more to try) that allow me to enjoy the classic flavor combo without dealing with the unpredictable cooking properties of bonfires. These s’mores puddings are another to add to the ever-growing list.
This is a fun riff on traditional chocolate pudding, layered with graham cracker crumbs and topped with torched marshmallow. The torched marshmallow on top is easiest to achieve with a kitchen torch, though I know some people like to use a regular torch from the hardware store. If you don’t have a torch, you can achieve the same effect by using the broiler but this requires very careful monitoring and broiler-safe dishes (ramekins should work). I think this would be equally well received by kids and adults. I can see it being a really fun dessert for summertime sleepovers and would also be a great ending for a summer dinner party. A few quick notes regarding the recipe – the original amount of cinnamon in the graham cracker layer was way overpowering, so I have reduced it here. To be honest, I think the baking of the graham cracker layer is not entirely necessary. Mixing the graham cracker crumbs with butter and sugar certainly enhances the flavor but if you wanted to skip that step and just use plain ol’ crumbled up graham crackers, I still think this would be a great dessert.