By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
have S'MORE
MONROE - Let's face it - camping is overrated. Deep down, who really wants to give up running water and electricity to sleep on the hard ground with an army of mosquitoes feasting on your limbs?

But throw a couple of s'mores into the mix and suddenly camping is a very worthy venture.

And you can thank a Girl Scout for that: America's favorite outdoor treat is presumed to be created by the Girl Scouts - the first known recipe for s'mores appears in a Girl Scout handbook from 1927.

Purists will tell you the only real s'mores are created over an open campfire. Simply lay a piece of chocolate bar on top of a graham cracker square. Toast a marshmallow until the center is gooey and slide it on top of the chocolate. Top with a second graham cracker square.

But others aren't satisfied to only have their s'mores in the Great Outdoors. People have been using gas and electric ranges and microwave ovens to toast marshmallows for decades. In recent years, various s'more-making devices have also hit the market.

Or you can take s'mores ingredients - chocolate, marshmallow and graham crackers - and mix them up in a whole new way. The Hershey Company even has a whole Web site full of s'mores recipes and even s'mores crafts.

Yesterday, Aug. 10, was designated National S'mores Day. In case you missed it and didn't get your daily dose of s'mores, here's a few new ways to try the campfire classic.

Indoor or Outdoor S'Mores

4 graham crackers, broken into halves

2 (1.55 ounces each) milk chocolate bars, broken into halves

4 marshmallows

Indoor S'mores

Place 1 graham cracker half on paper towel; top with chocolate bar half and marshmallow. Microwave at medium or 50 percent power in 10-second intervals until marshmallow puffs. Immediately top with remaining graham cracker half; gently press together.

Repeat for each serving; serve immediately. 4 servings.

Outdoor S'mores

Place1/2 of chocolate bar on graham cracker half. Carefully toast marshmallow over grill or campfire and place over chocolate. Top with second graham cracker half; gently press together.

Repeat for each serving; serve immediately. 4 servings.

S'mores Sandwich Bar Cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, softened

3/4 cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

11/3 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

11/3 cups mini milk chocolate bars or 5 regular

(1.55 ounces each) milk chocolate bars

3 cups miniature marshmallows

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 8-inch square baking pan.

2. Beat butter and sugar until well blended in large bowl. Add egg and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder and salt; add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Press half of dough in prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes.

3. Sprinkle mini chocolate bars over baked layer or arrange unwrapped chocolate bars over baked layer, breaking as needed to fit. Sprinkle with marshmallows; scatter bits of remaining dough over marshmallows, forming top layer. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or just until lightly browned. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars. 16 bars.

S'mores Ice Cream Pie

11/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted

1/4 cup sugar

4 cups vanilla or chocolate ice cream, slightly softened

3 cups miniature marshmallows

4 (1.55 ounces each) milk chocolate bars, finely chopped

Whipped topping or sweetened whipped cream (optional)

Additional graham cracker pieces, miniature marshmallows and chopped chocolate bars (optional)

1. Butter bottom and sides of 9-inch pie plate.

2. Stir together graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar until well blended. Press crumb mixture evenly on bottom and up sides of prepared pie plate. Freeze 5 minutes before filling.

3. Stir together ice cream, marshmallows and chocolate bar pieces; spoon into crust. Cover; freeze until firm.

4. Soften slightly to serve. Garnish with whipped topping, graham cracker pieces, marshmallows and chocolate bar pieces, if desired.

Makes 8 servings.

S'mores Toffee Almond Bars

12 to 14 whole graham crackers

3/4 cup toffee bits

1/4 cup light corn syrup

2 cups miniature marshmallows

3/4 cup sliced almonds

4 (1.55 ounces each) HERSHEY'S Milk Chocolate Bars, coarsely chopped

1. Heat oven to 300°F. Arrange graham crackers to cover bottom of 15-1/2x10-1/2x1-inch jelly-roll pan.

2. Place toffee bits and corn syrup in small, heavy saucepan; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until toffee is melted (small bits of almond will remain). Immediately pour mixture over graham crackers, spreading to cover crackers as much as possible.

3. Bake 3 to 5 minutes or until toffee mixture is spreadable. Remove from oven; immediately spread toffee mixture to cover crackers. Top with marshmallows and almonds.

4. Return to oven; bake 3 to 5 minutes or until marshmallows begin to puff. Remove from oven; sprinkle surface with candy bar pieces. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes about 3 dozen bars.