Just this morning it occured to me why s’mores are such a nostalgic dessert in our house.  Duh, I’m such dork for not realizing it sooner.  I mean, I guess I did realize it, but, didn’t REALLY realize it.  Does that even make sense??

Have I ever told you guys how Jon and I met?  I don’t think so… It involves s’mores.

It was 13 years ago at a Jr. High summer camp.  Um no, we were not in Jr. High, we were leaders at the camp.  Just to clarify.  During that week at camp we spent 1 night camping under the stars.  Like, in a dirt field, surrounded by pine trees.  I don’t even think they had porter potties.  We just had to pop a squat near a bush and pray a squirrel didn’t see that as an opportunity to nip at our ass.  Ok, seriously, I have an illegitimate fear of animals wanting to play cruel jokes on me, like biting my ass if I have to pee in the woods.  I also hate birds and swear they would love nothing more than to dive bomb my face, just for their afternoon activity.  Right, I’m not one of those animal people.  I’ll also never be a cat lady.  ANYWAY.  So, this one night camping in the woods… there was a bonfire, naturally, it is camping.  As leaders we distributed the s’more components to the kids and we had a lot of kids with us, I dunno, like more than 50.  Jon and I were in charge of graham, chocolate and mallow distribution (obviously I was in charge of food stuff, even back then when a microwave dinner was as technical as I got, I’ve always been drawn to food).  We had met before then, but really only know this because our friends tell us of random get togethers or parties we were both at YEARS prior… but we both have no memory of each other before this night.  Awesome, neither of us was struck by the others dashing good looks or killer personality at first sight.  So back to s’more distribution… as we handed out the ingredients we both found it amusing to lick the graham cracker before we gave it to the kids.  They watched us do it.  It’s not like we had some sick sense of humor and did it behind their backs, theeeeen handed it to them and giggled like school girls.  No no, we’re classy.  We licked their food right in front of their face.  Full disclosure style.  It was then their choice if they still wanted a s’more bad enough.  Every.Single.Kid still took those campfire classics.  Kids are gross.  Case in point.  Um ya, but so are adults.  Case in point.

Conclusion: Jon and I met while licking graham crackers at a Jr. High summer camp.  But, it was under a lovely star lit sky, so it was totally romantic.  Sparks did fly,  to no avail though because we were both dating other people.  That summer camp is when our relationship began though.  We became friends.  And for a year our friendship grew.  Finally, almost an entire year later we started dating, then we broke up, then got back together.  You know, it’s that fun relationship dance you do when you’re young, trying to figure out life.  But, once we got back together, it’s been on like donkey kong.  We pretty much knew at that point it was a done deal, that we chose each other, forever.  And then 3 years later we got married.  Why 3 years?  Because Jon moves slower than molasses when it comes to making decisions.  But, in his defense, once he makes a decision, it’ a very calculated one and he’s committed, 100% to that decision.  I appreciate him for this.

All that to say, s’mores have a very special place in my heart.  Which is why there are so many random s’more inspired recipes on my blog. Well, and Jon also really REALLY loves s’mores, all things s’more!

 

 

Now onto this pie.  And, it’s a goooood pie.  I tend to shy away from pie making out of fear.  I’m not a perfectionist limited by my capacity to conquer something the first time.  However, I really, like really HATE, to waste food.  So if I make something that fails, ya, it just royally pisses me off.  After some soul searching, I figured out the primary fear I have with making pie.  It’s not the time spent making the crust, or even how the crust will turn out.  It’s not even about the look of the pie.

Pooling.

When you slice into the pie, pull out that slice and the filling just pools straight to the newly empty space.  The.Worst.

 

 

I don’t care what kind of pie it is, it needs to hold some shape when you pull a slice out.  At least somewhat.  And this pie does.  The filling is like a custard: rich and creamy. It’s not overly sweet (assuming you don’t use milk chocolate), but the marshmallow topping makes up for any sweetness the pie doesn’t have.  It’s a marshmallow for cryin’ out loud, it’s supposed to be super sweet.  A flaky crust combined with a rich custard, topped off with a sweet toasted pile of fluff, it really does remind you of a s’more.  Replace the pie crust with a graham cracker crust and this pie is like a s’more, for reals!  I used a store-bought pie crust because I had 1 leftover from when I made a chocolate chip cookie pie a couple months ago.  I just haaaad to use it, because, as I said, I looooathe wasting food.

 

 

Chocolate Cream Pie with a Toasted Marshmallow Topping

Ingredients

  • 1 deep dish pie crust ( stour bought or homemade)
  • Chocolate Cream Filling:
  • 2 1/2 cups low fat milk (the higher the milk fat, the creamier it will be)
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp sugar, divided
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 6 egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cut into 6 pieces
  • 8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Marshmallow Topping:
  • 3 egg whites
  • 3 tbsp corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

Bake the pie crust according to package directions. Cool completely.

Chocolate Filling

Bring the milk, salt and 3 tbsp of sugar to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon to dissolve the sugar. Stir together the remaining 3 tbsp sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl.

Whisk the yolks thoroughly in a medium bowl for about 30 seconds, until slightly thickened. Add the cornstarch mixture and whisk until the mixture is glossy and the sugar has begun to dissolve, about 1 minute.

When the milk reaches a full simmer, drizzle it into the yolks, whisking constantly to temper the yolks. Then pour the egg yolk mixture back into the into the saucepan and bring back to a simmer, whisking constantly, until the mixture is thickened and glossy, about 15 seconds longer.

Remove pan from heat and whisk in the butter until incorporated then add the chopped chocolate and whisk until melted. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a rubber spatula to fully mix it all together. Stir in the vanilla, then immediately pour the filling into the cooled pie shell. Chill pie while you make the marshmallow topping.

Marshmallow Topping

Bring 1 inch of water to a simmer in a medium saucepan with a heat proof mixing bowl on top (double broiler).

*I use my stand mixer bowl so I don’t have to get 2 bowls dirty.

Combine egg whites, corn syrup, sugar and salt in a metal bowl large enough to sit on top of the saucepan (stand mixer bowl). Whisk constantly in the bowl over the water until the sugar is dissolved , about 3 to 5 minutes.

Pour mixture and vanilla into bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment (or just place your hot metal bowl into your stand mixer) and beat on high speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Spoon onto chocolate cream filling. Chill in fridge at least 6 hours, or overnight, before slicing.

*You can toast the top before you chill it, or wait until right before you serve it, either way works fine.

To toast the marshmallow: Heat broiler. Broil until topping begins to brown, 1 minute.

*I had to keep rotating my pie under my broiler every 45-ish seconds because of the way my broiler is, so just be careful not to burn your topping.

http://www.fatgirltrappedinaskinnybody.com/2013/08/chocolate-cream-pie-toasted-marshmallow-topping/

 

Chocolate Cream Pie adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

Marshmallow Topping adapted from One Perfect Bite