The History of S’mores

| November 3, 2012 | 0 Comments
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S’mores before and after the fire

What is S’mores

The delicious treat known as s’mores or smores, is a sandwich of two Graham Crackers with a filling of toasted marshmallow and chocolate, traditionally enjoyed around a campfire. It’s a treat mostly unique to North America and the word is believed to be a contraction of ‘some mores’.

The Origins of S’mores

The history of smores and the origins of this sweet, gooey American treat has become something of a myth, much like those campfire tales that are usually talked while partaking of this particular delicacy.

It is generally agreed that the first recorded recipe of the S’more was printed in 1927 by the American Girl Scouts, in a book entitled ‘Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts’, but there were various similar treats that preceded S’mores and may have influenced the popular camping treat.

Forerunners of S’mores

Treats such as Mallomars or Moon Pies are said to have been the main influences in s’mores history, but this has not been proven, despite the fact that both treats contain all three ingredients used to make s’mores as they are widely known.

Mallomars were created in 1913 and Moon Pies in 1917, at least a decade before the actual recipe for s’mores was ever printed. The invention of the s’more is attributed to Loretta Scott Crew, though the truth of this has been widely debated, and some have claimed that it is even a hoax. Nevertheless, whether the s’more was an accident, or a work of genius, it still remains as popular a dessert as ever.

S’mores have been so consistently popular since their apparent invention in 1927 by Girl Scouts that they even have their own holiday, though it is not nationally recognised, taking place on August 10th of every year.

More About S’mores

Various chocolate bar producers have been influenced by smores history, using the smores recipe in their own products, such as Pop Tarts or Hershey’s S’mores, that don’t necessarily need to be heated in order to be enjoyed, and come in more regular (and far less messy) shapes and packages, to assist with the difficult task of eating oozing marshmallow!

Some people have taken the art of s’mores to the extreme by making a s’more that weighed 1,600 pounds and used 20,000 marshmallows along with 7,000 chocolate bars. The amount of marshmallows used to make a s’more was then doubled in 2007! And we thought it was messy enough with one!

It is easy to see the regular appeal of s’mores around the campfire. For one, it uses the essential campfire ingredient; the marshmallow and adds chocolate, what’s not to like? Add to that the simplicity of this dessert, the sweetness and also the fun nature of the s’more and you get a perpetual campfire treat. Its success is probably also linked to the combination of the gooey marshmallow and the solid graham cracker. Invented in 1829 by Sylvester Graham, the graham cracker is a sweeter kind of cracker or cookie, that makes it the perfect dry compliment for the gooey nature of the chocolate and the marshmallow combined, as well as giving the consumer some level of control over the melted marshmallow! So, in some ways, Sylvester Graham should be celebrated as the man who made marshmallow somewhat more tangible than it was beforehand.

The history of smores oddly contracted name has also achieved mythic status. Is it because of the sticky nature of the treat that people had trouble simply asking for ‘some more’? One other reason given for its name is the speed with which s’mores generally have to be eaten, prompting those who are eating to quickly ask for ‘some more’. It is funny that while the origins of s’mores remain something of a mystery, the ingredients remain exactly the same.

How to Make S’Mores

If you’re interested in making some s’mores for yourself now that they’ve made you hungry, they are very easy to make, so long as you have a campfire. Take two graham crackers, some chocolate and a marshmallow. Toast the marshmallow over the fire for a short while until it browns all over and turns gooey. Then, while the marshmallow is still hot and sticky, sandwich it between the two Graham crackers along with the slab of chocolate and enjoy! Throughout the history of smores, it has been done this way and it’s not about to change!

For some great recipes for variations on the theme of s’mores check out our how to make s’mores guide.

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