Author, chocolatier and marshmallow maverick Oonagh Simms offers a masterclass on the indulgent fireside treats
It’s an American campfire staple: melted marshmallow sandwiched between two biscuits and a layer of chocolate. The name literally means ‘some more’, because they’re so bloody moreish. A couple of years ago I made a batch for a billionaire’s wedding in Florence. In doing so I genuinely believe I nailed the perfect balance of gooeyness and flavour.
1 Quality is key
My marshmallows are made from fresh fruit, which I purée myself; when toasted they’re crisp on the outside, jammy on the inside. For my raspberry champagne marshmallow I infuse raspberry purée with Laurent-Perrier Rosé champagne. Regular marshmallows are just sugar and air.
2 Make your own biscuits
You should at least aim to harmonise your flavours. For instance, a soft cinnamon or gingerbread biscuit pairs brilliantly with a caramelised apple marshmallow. A lemon and poppy seed biscuit complements passion fruit and ginger marshmallow beautifully.
3 Don’t scrimp on the chocolate.
I studied as a chocolatier in Paris for four years, so perhaps I’m a bit pompous about this. But think: there’s so much sweetness going on already, with the marshmallow and biscuit. Counterbalance with the classy bitterness of Valrhona, the finest chocolate that’s commercially available.
4 Be creative with texture
You can’t go wrong with a sprinkle of caramelised nuts. I’m also inclined to add a layer of whiskey and honey ganache, not only to liven up the flavour but bind the marshmallow to the biscuit and make the whole experience that much softer.
5 S’mores are social
It’s a fun food, designed to be devoured around the fire with a group of mates. Dig in, try new combinations, never take s’mores too seriously. And always have tissues to hand: they’re freakin’ messy.
Oonagh’s book The Marshmallowist is out now, published by Square Peg.