Wait! Don’t toss me in the “Ignore ‘til November” basket. I know it’s only September, but as you surely remember, I’ve always been hyperpunctual with my Christmas letters.
Lucia’s Christmas List, MMXIV
- The Inspired Vegan Cookbook by Terry Bryant1
- Cruelty-free moccasins2
- A Blowtorch3
- Because savory grits with sautéed broad beans, roasted fennel, and thyme
- Because the pair in my closet is wholly [holey] worn through at the toe, exposing my metatarsals to another kind of grit
- Because S’mores Cakes in a Jar
Now before you go scolding me that I could use a broiler for the s’mores cakes and save my mother a few grey hairs, let me remind you that you could replace Rudolf & Co. with a supersonic jet and deliver presents far more efficiently. But that would be soulicide—perhaps the most psyche-stabbing event since the extinction of the guileless Dodo.
Thus the need for a blowtorch. How can I whole-souledly enjoy the golden crowned, goo-gushing marshmallow miracle of a s’mores cake in a jar if I haven’t stared down the barrel of a blowtorch and blown a wet raspberry into the face of ignivomous annihilation?
S’mores Cakes in a Jar
Adapted from PB&Julia
- ½ cup graham cracker crumbs (about 7 squares)
- dash of salt
- 1 tablespoon canola oil or melted coconut oil
- splash of nondairy milk
- ½ cup flour
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/3 cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup warm water
- 1 ½ tablespoons canola oil or melted coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon apple cider or white vinegar
- dash of vanilla extract
- 6 vegan marshmallows (I use Dandies)
Preheat the oven to 350° F and lightly grease two half-pint canning jars.
Process the graham crackers into crumbs. Combine the crumbs with salt, 1 tablespoon of oil and enough nondairy milk to create a crumbly mixture that can be firmly tamped down. Press half the graham cracker crumbs into each jar, compressing the mixture as much as possible (I used my fingers).
Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt until well combined. Whisk in the water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla, beating until smooth.
Divide the batter between the jars. Fill a baking pan with ½ inch of water and place the jars in the pan (the water bath provides extra moisture in the oven to give your cakes a delicate crumb). Bake for 30-35 minutes. Make sure the cakes have plenty of room to rise (mine rose right into the oven rack above them—space your racks accordingly).
I love a little molten chocolate surprise in the center of my cakes—if you do too, remove the jars when a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out with a thin coat of batter. If you have more traditional tastes, bake until the toothpick comes out clean.
Set the jars on a cooling rack and scoop a little well out of the top of each cake, making space for three marshmallows. Wedge the marshies into the depression.
Set the oven to broil, and place the jars on a dry pan or cookie sheet. Broil (OR BLOWTORCH!) for 10-15 seconds, watching the entire time (on my first attempt, I had s’mores cake flambé—that is not the goal). Remove the jars as soon as the marshmallows begin to brown on top.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over the molten marshmallows and enjoy on the spot.