S’mores is a classic campfire treat that had me at chocolate. Not to forget the sweet, white gooey marshmallow smashed in between two graham crackers. Its roots go back to the Girl Scouts (I only made it halfway through the Brownies because I didn’t follow directions). There are different ways to concoct this cookie sandwich and a popular way is the Hershey’s s’mores with real graham crackers on the grill in summer.
Back in the day when I was carefree, young student I found myself apartment-less one summer. The landlord was fed up with late rent and one night put my belongings outside. So, I immediately packed up and migrated to Sonora by the river. Life with my black lab Stonefox, significant other, swimming, sunning and reading classic novels by day, socializing with people of all ages at night was my utopia until college in the fall. And it was that magical first long day that I savored my first s’mores on the grill.
Enter yesterday. By 5 a.m. I was sipping a cup of French vanilla coffee and fielding emails on my laptop. At 8 a.m. the cable guy arrived to fix the TV quirks. The phone company tried to sell me a cell phone two-year contract that I don’t want, and the phone networks I work wouldn’t let me connect to worldwide clients due to a technical glitch. During all this 21st century drama I escaped to s’mores in the great indoors.
Gourmet S’Mores Microwave-style
4 low-fat honey graham crackers (whole grain)
4-6 ounces premium dark or milk chocolate bar with sea salt
1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional)
Place 1/2 a graham cracker on a microwave plate. Top with a bit of chocolate bar, sprinkle with coconut and top with one marshmallow. Cook in microwave for about 30 seconds or till chocolate and marshmallow melt. Top with other graham cracker and press. Repeat. Serves four.
Honey Lemonade Tea
4 chamomile tea bags
Honey to taste
Brew four cups of tea. Add lemon juice and honey. Pour into four 8 ounce glasses filled with 1/3-1/2 cup ice cubes. Garnish with mint leaves, straws, and lemon slices.
So, contrasting kicking back and enjoying life versus a technical world that has me working like a gerbil on a wheel has been on my mind. As summer nears, it’s a big challenge to do the daily grind while fun-loving tourists come here to play. But by taking time out to whip up a warm s’mores and sip cold honey lemonade with calming tea is a perfect way to escape back in time when life was simple.
Motto: When life gives you lemons, take time out and sweeten life’s sour woes that will soon pass.
— Cal Orey, M.A. is an author and journalist. Her books include “The Healing Powers” series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, and Coffee) published by Kensington. (The Healing Powers of Honey and Coffee are offered by the Good Cook Book Club.) Her website is www.calorey.com.