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Chocolate S'mores Bark
I am the world’s worst camper.
I am terrified of spiders (not to the point of harming any, but still).
I always get psychosomatic itches for hours whenever I accidentally
brush up against any suspicious looking ivy. I’m kind of really afraid
of getting Lyme disease. I don’t like sleeping anywhere but my own bed,
really. The slasher films of the 1980s did a number on my psyche, too,
because it feels like there is some warped psychopath watching me from
behind every tree. I always pack poorly. In fact, the first time I ever
went camping (the Rainbow Gathering in college), I brought along a
suitcase on wheels and had to walk for miles down bumpy, rocky paths
until we were at the campsite. That was a lot of fun. You can take the
girl out of the North Shore suburbs of Chicago, but you can’t take the
North Shore out of the girl, apparently.
That being said, I love the smell of campfires and campfire food. Oh,
and nature, unfamiliar bird songs and all that. This S’Mores Bark was
born out of that affection, and the beauty of it is you don’t need to
expose yourself to heatstroke or the horrible realization that you
forgot your bug repellent in order to eat it. Simple to prepare, it is
crunchy, chocolatey, and subtly smoky all at once, just like the famous
decadent campfire food it was inspired by, and it’s something you can
easily eat year-round to remind you of the pleasures of summer. It is a
splurge, in that it’s probably not Fuhrman-McDougall-Esselstyn
approved, but don’t we all deserve a treat once in a while? Think of
this as an inside-out s’mores: all of the pleasure and none of the
mosquito bites. The smoked salt just takes it over the edge. May I pat
myself on the back for that brainstorm?
By the way, traditionally these would be made using graham crackers but
I couldn’t find any gluten-free vegan ones, so I just used small
cookies that fit the bill. I used Dandies vegan marshmallows. Highly
recommended! I also recommend having someone hold the bowl of melted
chocolate over the cookie sheet while you scoop it out, or vice versa.
20 oz. vegan and Fair Trade chocolate chips
1 T. coconut oil
1 t. pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. liquid smoke
1 cup vegan graham crackers or cookies, broken into smaller pieces
1 cup vegan marshmallows, cut in half
1/2 t. smoked salt (this was the brand I used, found at Whole Foods)
In a double-boiler or a DIY double-boiler (how
I roll) with a few inches of simmering water in it, add your chocolate
chips and oil. (The oil is necessary to get it to melt uniformly; you
can also use shortening.) Stir until all is melted, add the vanilla and
then turn off the heat. Stir in the liquid smoke and the graham crackers or cookies.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Spread the chocolate across the sheet evenly. Pop those marshmallows
right in there! Sprinkle the smoked salt across the top and store in
the fridge until it sets.
2013, 2014, Vegan Street