S’mores Chocolate Cupcakes
S’mores are a tradition with our family, even if we only manage them once during the course of a summer.
We had an exceptionally active summer this year, made possible by endless hot days and dry evenings. (Always my preference over the chilly, rainy summers we sometimes endure.)
We took in an Akron Aeros baseball game and collected player autographs, with fireworks afterward. We spent a breathless day riding roller coasters at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio. (Our favorite — the Top Thrill Dragster, which accelerates from O to 120 mph in less than four seconds, thrusting you onto a gigantic metal hairpin twisting 420 feet into the air.)
We sampled fried Oreos and Snickers and visited the livestock barns at the Medina County Fair.
We sweltered through marching bands and drill teams during our town’s Blue Tip parade, and lapped up melting ice cream at Bidinger’s, a favorite local stand.
We took a vacation to Mena, Arkansas, enjoying a day trip to Garvan Woodland Gardens and Mid-America Science Museum in Hot Springs. (Not to mention a lovely lunch at La Hacienda, my favorite Mexican restaurant.)
My husband and I even got away to the Cleveland Botanical Garden, with a quick side trek to the newly-opened Horseshoe Casino in downtown Cleveland (just to see what all the fuss was about).
But we never made s’mores.
My oldest daughter would remind me of this whenever we wandered into the vicinity of the tantalizing graham cracker, chocolate bar and marshmallow display at Walmart.
“We haven’t made s’mores yet.”
And now, summer is over. Or at least Labor Day has come and gone and school is in session.
This weekend I lessened the disappointment of a s’moreless summer by making S’mores Chocolate Cupcakes. Just like the real thing, this recipe combines graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallow into a gooey, tasty treat.
Bring on the fireflies. It’s not too late.
S’mores Chocolate Cupcakes
Adapted from Duncan Hines via The Cleveland Plain Dealer
(Makes 24 cupcakes)
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons sugar
Pinch of salt
1 package devil’s food cake mix
13-oz. jar marshmallow fluff
2 cans prepared chocolate frosting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pans with cupcake liners.
Make graham cracker layer for bottom of cupcakes:
Melt butter in small bowl using microwave. Add graham cracker crumbs, sugar and salt; mix with fork to combine thoroughly.
Place two generous teaspoons of mixture in each liner and press firmly to mold to bottom. Bake for 5-7 minutes or until graham cracker layer is golden. Let cool on racks.
Meanwhile, prepare the cake batter as directed on package. Scoop batter on top of graham cracker layer, filling liner no more than two-thirds full.
Bake as directed on package; usually 18-22 minutes for cupcakes (or until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean).
Let cupcakes cool 5 minutes in pans on racks, then turn out onto racks to finish cooling.
Fill and frost cupcakes:
After cupcakes are cool, use a small paring knife to cut a cone shape out of the middle of each cupcake. Be careful not to cut through the graham cracker layer. Scoop marshmallow fluff into a sandwich bag (it will be sticky — you will probably have to scrape it off the spoon) and seal bag. Snip a corner off (be sure not to snip off too much, or the hole will be too large and difficult to work with). Squeeze fluff into hollow of each cupcake.
Frost cupcakes using a pastry bag or decorating tool fitted with a large round decorator tip.
Cupcakes can be stored in the refrigerator to keep marshmallow center firm.