I love all things s'mores. But, that's face it...nothing "s'mores inspired" (like cupcakes, tarts, cookies, etc.) come close to the real thing.
Except for this pie.
This pie is easy to make and is decadently delicious. It's a very sophisticated way to cure your s'mores craving...especially when it's too rainy (like it was here last month) or too damn hot & humid (like it is now) to build a campfire.
This award-winning recipe comes from Butter & Scotch, a New York bar and bakery, and I made in in a Girls' Night Out class recently at Kitchen Conservatory. It was a hit.
Be sure to use a good quality MILK chocolate; semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate just doesn't replicate the s'mores taste me all know and love. Don't be intimidated by the homemade marshmallow creme. It's very easy to make...and so much better than the jarred version. Trust me.
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (10-15 graham crackers)
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
7 ounces milk chocolate, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup cold water, divided
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- To make the crust: Crumble graham crackers into the work bowl of a food processor and process until finely ground. Pour melted butter into crumbs and mix until the butter is fully incorporated and the texture is that of wet sand. Butter a 9-inch pie pan and firmly press the graham cracker crumbs against the sides, then against the bottom of the pan (the underside of a measuring cup works well for smoothing the bottom crust). Chill for at least 30 minutes to avoid crumbling when serving. Preheat the oven to 350.
- To make the filling: Put the chocolate in a large mixing bowl. Heat the cream in a saucepan until scalded — do not boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 1 minute. Whisk the cream and chocolate together until glossy and smooth. Add a pinch of salt, then crack the egg into the chocolate mixture and whisk to fully incorporate. Pour into chilled crust and bake for 25 minutes, or until the filling is set but still slightly wobbly in the center. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
- To make the marshmallow topping: Pour 1/4 cup water into the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the gelatin on top. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together the remaining 1/4 cup of water, sugar and corn syrup just until sugar is dissolved. Heat until a candy thermometer reads 260 degrees, or hard-ball stage. Remove from heat, turn stand mixer to medium speed to begin beating the bloomed gelatin, and slowly pour in sugar syrup, scraping any remaining syrup from the pan with a heat-proof spatula. Begin increasing the speed of the mixer, avoiding any splashing, and beat until the mixture is white, fluffy and tripled in volume. Add vanilla and beat for a few moments more. Pour the mixture onto the cooled chocolate layer, gently spreading it to the edges of the crust with a spatula. Refrigerate, uncovered, 30 to 60 minutes.
- To toast the marshmallow. A brulee torch is best for this. If using a torch, slowly wave the flame over the surface of the marshmallow until you achieve the desired level of toastiness. If you do not have a torch, use the broiler of your oven. Preheat the broiler, cover the edges of the pie crust with foil or pie shields, place the pie on a baking sheet and broil — watching carefully to prevent burning — for 2 to 3 minutes, rotating as necessary.
- To slice the pie, it helps to dip your knife in hot water, then dry it with a towel. The heat facilitates easy slicing through the marshmallow layer.