Summer for me meant Girl Scout camp! Every year for two weeks, I’d learn how to sail at Casa Mare, horseback trail ride at Camp Robinwood or I’d come with my Girl Scout troop on weekends to earn badges. I had the most fun with my troop because we did a lot of open-fire cooking. Campfire dinner day was the only assignment I wanted. We’d make tortilla pizza, biscuits and gravy, even peach cobbler. The evening usually ended with eating too many s’mores and not being able to go to sleep while we gossiped and giggled into the night. 

S’mores have always signified summer to me, but you know how to make a s’more; we’ve all had one! So let’s do something different. Maybe you got miso for pork chops, only to be stuck with more and not sure what to do. I’m here to offer you an out.

When I started posting my food online, many of my friends asked where I got my ideas from. Most of my ideas are random and include the phrase, “Oh, I need to eat that.” As I became more confident in my cooking abilities, the food I cooked became more interesting. This is one of those recipes. 

You’re probably looking at this like, “Miso? And S’mores?! Caramel? That doesn’t make any sense.” Like Charlie in the Wonka Chocolate Factory, you must trust and come with me on this adventure. This isn’t the s’mores bar you remember from your childhood. This is an adult s’more bar. It’s not too sweet and offers a salty kick to balance the marshmallow cream, while the miso gives the cookie a soft chewy mouthfeel. Adding miso to caramel gives it the perfect salt level. It’s not only a delicious complement to the s’mores bars, but it’s also perfect on ice cream or in coffee beverages. 

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S’more Cookie Bars 

Preparation time: 30 minutes 

Cook time: 40 minutes 

Servings: 1 9-by-13 sheet 

INGREDIENTS
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons finely crushed graham crackers
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1¼ cups packed brown sugar (275 grams)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (55 grams)
  • ¾ cup softened regular butter (1½ stick) 
  • 4 tablespoons miso
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 2/3 cups dark chocolate chips, divided
  • 7 ounces jar marshmallow crème or Fluff (not whole marshmallows)
  • ¾ cups crushed graham crackers (not finely)  

Miso caramel 

  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons miso
STEPS
  1. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, finely crushed graham crackers (you can put them through a food processor or use a bag and crush with a rolling pin), baking soda and baking powder. Set aside.
  2. Cream together butter, sugars and miso in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy (approximately 5 minutes).
  3. Add in eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Add vanilla and beat again for about an additional minute.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the wet ½ cup at a time, using a rubber spatula to mix until combined. Be sure not to over mix. Fold in 1/3 cup chocolate chips.
  5. Cover the dough in plastic wrap and place in fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees for at least 30 minutes. Line a 9-by-13 baking pan with parchment paper, leaving 2 inches of parchment hanging off the long sides, to create a sling to pull the bars out.
  7. Divide the chilled cookie dough in half (approximately 510 grams). Reserve about half for the topping. Evenly press half the chilled dough along the bottom of the prepared baking pan. You can lay a piece of plastic wrap on top, and use a measuring cup to press the cookie dough
  8. Evenly scoop marshmallow crème on top of the dough. Dipping utensils into hot water will help spread the marshmallow cream. Spread the marshmallow cream along the bottom layer of dough. Next, layer with 1 cup of chocolate chips. Finally, layer with hand-crushed (not finely crushed) pieces of graham crackers.
  9. Top everything with the remaining half of the chilled dough. Make balls of dough, then press them into flat disks. Use them to create the top layer. Try to cover as much as you can, and seal the edges. It’s OK if it’s not perfect!
  10. Once the final cookie dough layer is in place, sprinkle with the remaining 1/3 cup of chocolate chips
  11. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 28-38 minutes or until edges are set pulling slightly from the side of the pan. At 28-32 minutes, the edges will be cooked, but the center ooey-gooey (this is my favorite way). For more well-done bars, bake 34-38 minutes.
  12. Cool pan on a cooling rack. Bars are cool enough to eat after 30 minutes, but they will not be firm enough to lift out of the pan until closer to an hour.
  13. Using the parchment, lift the bars out, slice and enjoy!

Miso caramel 

  1. In a saucepan, add sugar and water. Do not mix. If you have a rubber brush or spatula, ready it by placing in a cup of water.
  2. Heat over medium heat and swirl pot occasionally. Do not mix. If sugar begins to stick to the side of the pan, use a wet brush or spatula to push sugar into the pot. Be sure to watch the caramel as it can burn. 
  3. When the caramel reaches an amber brown color, remove from heat.
  4. Using a whisk, slowly add heavy cream and constantly whisk. The mixture will bubble. If your sauce pan isn’t deep enough, let the caramel cool down, adding cream a little at a time.
  5. Whisk in the miso until smooth. Let it cool slightly, transferring to a heatproof storage container and storing in an airtight container in the fridge.
  6. Serve on s’more bars or any of your favorite desserts.