Bradley ChenComment

Smores Craquelin | Scouting it Out

Bradley ChenComment
Smores Craquelin | Scouting it Out

Smores Craquelin | Scouting it Out

August 21, 2018

 

More than Knots

This week's origin post is slightly different from all the others in that it is centered around my past rather than a specific ingredient. For those of you who don't know, I grew up as a Boy Scout and eventually made my way to become an Eagle Scout. Thus, I was always surrounded by role models and developed a very strong moral compass that live by today.

Smores Craquelin

I remember when I first introduced myself as a Boy Scout to my classmates, I would often receive smirks and scoffs out of surprise. While none of these people meant any harm nor did I take their behavior as offense, I was only made more aware of how Boy Scouts played such an important role in developing my beliefs and character. 

I always tell other people that being a Boy Scout meant so much more than having the opportunity to learn essential survival skills. Other than the portrayed stereotype of Scouting being centered around tying knots and building fires, the program is truly designed to raise and develop global-minded leaders.

Smores Craquelin

The Bake (+ Contest!)

A fond memory I have that is rooted in Scouting practice is the art of camping. In my eight years of Scouting experience, camping became a fundamental experience that no Scout can overlook. While the activities and lectures at Scouting camps are planned, there are so many lessons a Scout can learn in a specific camping experience. For me, some of the most important lessons I learned took place around the campfire.

Smores Craquelin

The campfire was a way for everyone to appreciate each other and learn from the different backgrounds, experiences, and beliefs that make up a camping group. I fondly remember the looks of excitement and wonder as young Scouts learnt how to build their own fire. However, the campfire was more than just a way to test a Scout's skills. It allowed everyone to come together and share stories, laughs, and memories. To me, being around people at a campfire can be one of the most humbling experiences one can take part in.

Of course, camping is a work hard play hard experience. For me, smores were always a key component of camping. The toasted marshmallow, slightly runny chocolate, and crisp graham cracker made for the perfect midnight snack under the stars. 

Smores Craquelin

This week, I am also entering a smores themed Instagram competition hosted by thefeedfeed and Ghirardelli. Thus, this recipe is the result of trying to think of creative ways to include a smores recipe on my website. In the end, I chose this recipe due to my obvious love for cream puffs (see the patisserie section on Brad & Butter.) 

The crackly graham cracker crust, toasted marshmallows, and creamy chocolate filling capture the essence of summer nights spent in the outdoors and brought me back to the glory days. While I am no longer a Boy Scout, I have never regretted being a part of the organization and highly recommend it to future generations. Trust me, it is more than worth your time.

Some may describe the garnish on these guys as a bit *ahem* extra, but I like to see it as bold flair. Regardless, these are sure to impress anyone whether at your next tea party or out in the woods! I hope you enjoy and make sure to vote for this recipe when come early September!

Cheers,

Bradley 

 
 

Ingredients (makes about 12)

For the Graham Cracker Crust

  • 50g of butter, unsalted

  • 40g of granulated sugar

  • 20g of all-purpose flour

  • 1 graham cracker, crushed into fine crumbs

For the Choux Buns

  • 1/4 cup of water

  • 1/4 cup of milk

  • 115g of butter, unsalted

  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract

  • 1 cup of bread flour

  • 2 tbsp. of powdered sugar

  • Approximately six eggs

For the Ghirardeli Chocolate Cream

  • 150ml of heavy whipping cream

  • 4-5 quares of Ghirardelli Sea Salt Soiree Chocolate Squares

To garnish

  • Graham Crackers

  • Marshmallows

Graham Cracker Crust

  1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. 

  2. Mix in the flour and crushed graham crackers until fully incorporated

  3. Roll the dough out between two sheets of cling film as thin as possible. 

  4. Score as many small 1-inch circles on the rolled out dough.

  5. Freeze until ready to use. 

Choux Buns

  1. Combine the water, milk, butter, and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat. 

  2. Once the mixture boils, dump in the flour and powdered sugar all at once. 

  3. Remove from heat and vigorously stir until the flour is fully incorporated.

  4. Return the dough to low heat and continue mixing until a thin layer of film forms on and sticks to the bottom of the pan. 

  5. Transfer the dough to a mixing bowl and leave to cool for 10 minutes. 

  6. In a separate bowl, crack 6 eggs and whisk until combined. 

  7. Pour a small amount (about 1/5 ) of the eggs into the dough and mix until fully incorporated. Continue this process, adding more egg only until the previous addition is fully incorporated. 

  8. Transfer the choux dough to a pastry big with a round tip

  9.  Pipe the dough on a parchment lined baking sheet in equally sized rounds. Make sure to leave enough space (approximately an inch) between each choux bun to give room for rise.

  10. Place a circle of graham cracker crust on each of the piped choux dough. 

  11. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, rotating the sheet pan halfway. 

Ghirardelli Chocolate Cream

  1. Over a bain marie, melt the chocolate squares. Let cool slightly.

  2. Whisk the cream until it holds medium stiff peaks.

  3. Fold the melted chocolate into the cream until fully incorporated.

  4. Transfer to a piping bag

Assembly

  1. Generously pipe the Ghirardelli Chocolate cream until each of the choux buns.

  2. Make a classic smore, skewering marshmallow and Ghirardelli Chocolate between two graham crackers. Toast over a fire until the marshmallow just begins to melt.

  3. Rest the Smore on top of the choux bun, allowing the skewer to pierce through the bun.

  4. Enjoy!