Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Food Watch: What do you get when you cross a blondie with a s'more? (Besides a mess)

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Kelsey's s'mores bars: You notice that marshmallow creme oozing all over the place? Don't say I didn't warn you. But again, it could have been worse!

by Ken

In fairness, it's not as bad as I was thinking when I first saw the link to a combination of a blondie and a s'more. Which was kind of a relief, because I noted that the concoction comes from Cooking Channel's Kelsey Nixon, and I like Kelsey, and don't think of her as a purveyor of mindless food excess.

These days, though, I dread hearing of yet more drastic combinations seeking to cram as many of the foods known to man into a single pile of crap. You know, like the slice of pizza topped with a slab of moussaka nestled between two eight-ounce ground-brisket burgers slathered with saut├ęd mushrooms and onions and three kinds of cheese, all sandwiched between two chocolate-chip-banana waffles -- battered and deep-fried, of course. And served with a side of fried chicken.

I realize that even as I'm straining to be outrageous, the likely response is a yawning, "That sounds so day-before-yesterday."

Whereas if you look at what Kelsey has done, she has merely reconfigured the thing, of a cookie- or cake-like nature, on which the chocolate and marshmallow have to rest to constitute a s'more in the first place. And you could fault the logic of nudging your standard blondie in the direction of s'moredom by tossing in a cup of graham-cracker crumbs along with a cup and a half of flour to make the "crust." Or, as she puts it:
Just because there isn't a fire doesn't mean you can't enjoy s'mores. Try these fantastic bars that include everything in a classic s'more: graham crackers, mallow creme and chocolate. Think of these as s'mores just packaged differently!
I don't happen to be a s'mores person myself. I never encountered them growing up, and to a grown-up sensibility they seem to me way more mess than they're worth. And while Kelsey's bar format might seem to mitigate the mess factor, with that marshmallow creme oozing in mid-bar, I'm not so sure.

You'll note in the recipe that when it comes, first, to laying down the marshmallow layer, the instruction is to "spread the marshmallow creme in an even layer, using a rubber spatula that has been sprayed with nonstick spray," and then when it comes to laying the upper half of the dough on top of this, you're instructed first to roll it out on a premeasured square of wax or parchment paper and then "working carefully, place the dough on top of the marshmallow layer." No, I don't think so, thank you.

But don't let me stop you. At least it's not sitting atop a key-lime tart and topped with a banana split. Unless you choose to do so, that is.
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