(Note: this post is a bit long, so if you’re just here for the recipe, scroll down a bit to skip the whole story).
Although we’ve had the snow come and stay for the last few days, yesterday was the first day where it got well and truly cold. I climbed into my car at 8am and the thermometer read 10 degrees. I was bundled up from head to toe and I still probably could have used another scarf.
It’s bound to get colder than this, but the first time it dips this low is always the hardest because I haven’t acclimated yet.
Even Moosie said “Hell no” to the weather. We could only get her to go out in short spurts, so instead of three long walks like she usually gets, she got about seven short ones. Not that I’m complaining, because I didn’t really want to be out that much, either. She was happy to spend the day snuggled on my boyfriend’s stomach while he played video games, and I was happy to let her.
Since it became a bit of an indoors day, I figured it was the perfect time to treat myself a little. At first, I thought about making myself a cup of hot chocolate, but then I thought, why do that when I can completely destroy my kitchen instead?
I opted to forego the hot chocolate, and instead chose to play with some of the cool gadgets I got for my birthday a few weeks ago. On top of some generous gift cards and winter gear that I really needed, I also go two (count it, two!) ice cream makers. I hadn’t gotten a chance to play with them yet, and yesterday seemed like the perfect time.
Making your own ice cream always seemed like one of those things that only truly fancy people did. I would read it in cookbooks and think, “Oh, they’re just able to do that because they’re a professional chef. I could never do that.” For some reason, though, it stuck with me. Emboldened by a pretty successful year, I decided to give it a try.
I could not have been more happy with the results. I used this recipe to make it, and I have to say that it is probably one of the best ice cream experiences I have had in my life. The ice cream maker that I used was just a simple Hamilton Beach one, nothing fancy, but it worked like a charm.
Of course, with so much time in the kitchen, I figured why not make something to put the ice cream on top of? Something warm and gooey and chocolatey sounded like the best option. Enter: Smore’s Brownies.
I invented these guys over the summer and have made them several times since then. Each time, they’ve been a huge hit. They provide all the flavor of a smore without the need for an open fire, or fear of getting your hands messy. The structure of the brownie after it has cool completely makes it so that you can package them and hand them out at holidays.
They also sit well overnight, when the marshmallow becomes chewy and crunchy on the outside (What are you talking about? I’m not drooling!)
I tailored this recipe to suit my brownie preference (heavy and rich like fudge, but crumbly like cake), but it’s not necessary for you to use. If you have a favorite brownie recipe that has always worked for you, then definitely feel free to use that one. Or, if you’re pressed for time, a boxed mix will do just fine.
Just follow the instructions on the recipe of your choosing and add the graham crackers and marshmallows about ten to twelve minutes before it is done cooking.
1/2 Cup Milk
1 Small Hershey Milk Chocolate Bar
3 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
3/4 Cups Cocoa Powder
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1 1/2 Cups Melted Butter
1/4 Cup Oil (Vegetable or Olive)
8 Graham Crackers, Crushed
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a small sauce pan, heat milk and chocolate bar over medium heat until bar is melted, stirring constantly. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, add dry ingredients and stir. Add melted butter, oil, eggs, and melted chocolate, then stir until combined. (Note: It will feel thicker than boxed mixes). Add parchment paper to the bottom and sides of a 9-by-13 pan and grease heavily. Add the brownie mix, spreading evenly. Place in the oven for ten minutes.
While that is baking, place 8 graham crackers into a large plastic bag and crush (I used a ladle for this). Bring out the brownies, add the graham crackers evenly, then spread the marshmallows on top of that, leaving space in between each one because they will expand as they heat.
Put the pan back in the oven for another 12-15 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck through the center comes out clean. Let cool 20 minutes, then serve. (Or, eat right away and accept that your brownies will fall apart but still taste delicious).
Since I had the ice cream I’d made, I added a scoop on top and dug in. Some foods have a way of warming up the soul, and this one definitely did just that.
Future Abby will have to clean up the mess in the kitchen, but Past Abby didn’t care one bit. Also, I highly recommend that you invest in an ice cream maker. Turns out, ice cream recipes are insanely easy and not half as scary as I thought they were. Plus, homemade tastes so much better than store-bought.
Do you have a dessert that you bust out during cold weather? Leave a link to the recipe in the comments below and I’ll check it out!
Until next time, eat chocolate, stay merry, and snuggle your dogs.