GoCalaverasFoodie come to Calaveras for the food...stay for the adventure 2013-10-31T21:01:51Z http://www.gocalaverasfoodie.com/feed/atom/ WordPress Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[S’mores]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=188 2011-05-20T15:07:46Z 2011-05-20T15:07:46Z S’mores are a traditional campfire treat!

S’mores are a traditional campfire treat!

A s’more is a traditional campfire treat popular in the United States, consisting of a roasted marshmallow and a layer of chocolate sandwiched between two pieces of graham cracker. The name “s’more” means “some more”, as in: “give me some more!”. S’more appears to be a contraction of the phrase, “some more.” The informal nature of this term reflects the environment in which s’mores are traditionally served and its meaning hints at the desires of campers who are not satisfied by just one s’more. Some have jokingly surmised that the name originated from people who were so busy eating the tasty treat that they did not have time to speak in complete sentences, or alternately, that their enunciation was compromised by the fact that their mouth was still full of the previously mentioned s’more.

Another theory is that the dessert is so sticky, particularly due to the combination of melted chocolate and marshmallow, that it is especially difficult to talk or swallow, and this remains the case for some time even after the entire dessert is eaten. Therefore, if someone who has finished swallowing their last piece of the dessert is asked if they’d like another, “s’more please” would be all they could manage to relay.

While the origin of this popular campfire dessert is unclear, the first recorded version of the recipe can be found in the Girl Scout Handbook of 1927. The recipe is credited to Loretta Scott Crew, who reportedly made them by the campfire for the scouts.

S’mores are associated with recreational camping. Part of the enjoyment of this simple dessert is the way in which it is made on such camping trips. A marshmallow is skewered on the end of a long stick (or metallic skewer) and held just above a campfire until its outer surface starts to brown. Once heated, the inside of the marshmallow becomes soft or molten. The marshmallow is quickly pinched off its stick with the waiting graham crackers, one of which has a piece of chocolate on it. Ideally, the heat from the roasted marshmallow partially melts the chocolate. However, some people assemble the entire s’more on the stick and cook it all at once to ensure that the chocolate will melt. Peanut butter can be added to the mix for additional flavor, either between a graham cracker and the chocolate piece or between the chocolate piece and the marshmallow. Keeping the graham crackers and chocolate near the campfire can help melt the chocolate.

Making s’mores in this manner is so popular in the United States and Canada that supermarkets often carry graham crackers, marshmallows, and large chocolate bars in the same shelf section during the summer months. In recent years S’More Kits for assembly on the kitchen table at home have been sold at housewares stores; as well as individual items such as SMORSTiX, intended to make preparing s’mores as easy as possible. These consist of a small heating element to cook the marshmallow, metal skewers and a lazy susan to hold the raw ingredients. These are similar to fondue sets. Different items sold as s’mores may be found in restaurants, prepared at home, or even bought ready-made. These confections usually contain the three ingredients of graham cracker, chocolate, and marshmallow, but they are not necessarily heated or served in the same shape as the traditional s’more.

The popularity of s’mores has led to the flavor being used in product development of other foodstuffs; Pop-Tarts now feature a s’mores variety that has a graham cracker crust, chocolate icing, and chocolate & marshmallow-flavored filling.

An alternative method for preparing the s’more is by heating the entire object in the microwave. Advantages of this method include the speed, relative ease of preparation, and the increased amount of melted chocolate. This method softens the graham cracker, which is distasteful to some. This method often removes the social element of preparation, which shies some away from them.

Traditional S’mores Recipe

S’mores are a traditional American campfire treat, prepared over an open fire or even in your own home.

Ingredients

* 4 marshmallows
* 4 graham crackers (4″ x 2″ – 10cm x 5cm)
* 2 oz (55g) chocolate bar

Makes 4 single serving s’mores

Preparation

  1. Build a campfire for toasting marshmallows.
  2. A long thin stick from the woods is hard to find(a thin, long wooden dowel may be a good substitute but will catch fire easily). The stick, which is usually taken from the ground as part of a dead treebranch, does not have to be sterilized, but simply clear of any brush. Alternately, you may purchase a metal roaster stick. Don’t use a coat hanger or chrome or galvanized metal(like fence wire). Use stainless steel.
  3. Before roasting the marshmallows, one must prepare the pieces of graham cracker, and a layer of chocolate. Break the crackers in half, so you have 2 2″x2″ (5cm x 5cm) squares for each s’more. Break the chocolate bar into 1/2 oz (15g) pieces.
  4. Push a marshmallow on to the end of the stick. Using the stick to place the marshmallow directly above the flame or source of heat, toast the marshmallow until it is golden brown around the outside. Some prefer their marshmallow burned. Others like to burn the marshmallow and pull off the burned outer skin to get to the gooey center.
  5. Place the toasted marshmallow in between two pieces of graham cracker, with a layer of chocolate bar in between. The marshmallow should be hot enough to melt the chocolate. In a family setting, sometimes it is helpful for children to roast the marshmallows, and adults to supervise and assemble the s’more while preventing the child from touching the hot end of the stick.

* If you are not camping, patio/backyard firepits work great.Here is a way to do it indoors in your own home:

  1. Prepare the pieces of graham cracker, and a layer of chocolate. Break the crackers in half, so you have 2 2″x2″ (5cm x 5cm) squares for each s’more. Break the chocolate bar into 1/2 oz (15g) pieces.
  2. Place the chocolate on one of the pieces of graham cracker, and then place a marshmallow on top.
  3. Put it in the microwave for 15-25 seconds (depending on the microwave).
  4. After it has been microwaved, the marshmallow should be much bigger and fluffier and the chocolate should be semi-melted. Place the other half of the graham cracker on top of the marshmallow and squish it down.
Excerpts taken from Wikipedia.org and wikibooks.org.
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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Robert Benchley—How to Eat]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=742 2010-09-20T16:16:40Z 2010-09-20T16:16:40Z

Robert Benchley demonstrates how to eat properly.

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Menu (A Pete Smith Specialty)]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=751 2010-09-20T15:50:59Z 2010-09-20T15:50:59Z

Possibly the world’s first cooking video, in (less than appetizing) two-strip Technicolor. Oscar nominee for Best Short Subject, 1933.

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Calaveras Brings Home Gold…Again!]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=688 2010-08-20T16:28:03Z 2010-08-20T16:28:03Z Calaveras County at the 2010 California State Fair

Calaveras County at the 2010 California State Fair

Calaveras County was awarded Gold for their booth at the 2010 California State Fair. “It’s always a great feeling to represent Calaveras County and come home with the Gold,” said Lisa Mayo, Executive Director of the Calaveras Visitors Bureau. “It’s a lot of hard work and a lot of coordination that pays off in the end.” The Awards Ceremony, which took place Wednesday afternoon at Cal Expo, was attended by several members of the Calaveras Visitors Bureau Board of Directors as well as volunteers and Calaveras Visitors Bureau staff.

This year’s state fair theme is “Your Passport to Adventure”, an easy theme to build a Calaveras exhibit around.  The focal point of the exhibit is a lifted yellow Jeep Wrangler with animated frogs peering out of it, looking at all the Calaveras adventure surrounding them. There’s even a baby frog that pokes his head out of a picnic basket. Once again this year the booth is being staffed by wonderful Calaveras volunteers.

Side view of the award winning booth design.

Side view of the award winning booth design.

Mayo’s brother, Brett Loring, gave the presentation to the judges earlier in the week. The booth is judged on content, marketability, craftsmanship, agricultural attributes, creative use of products, produce and/or artifacts and technology and/or animation, special effects and experience.

 

Creating and building a booth for the State Fair is one of the largest marketing projects that the Calaveras Visitors Bureau takes on. With the help of State Fair veteran, Anna Davies of the Calaveras Winegrape Alliance and booth builder, Richard Bay, the exhibit is a true representation of the many adventurous, agricultural and historic attributes of Calaveras County. This year’s booth highlights Mark Twain and his contribution to Calaveras County. It is expected that close to one million people will attend this year’s fair.

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Chatom Vineyards from “A Long Pour”]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=723 2010-02-20T20:52:13Z 2010-02-20T20:52:13Z Exerpt from A Long Pour, alongpour.com, read full story at: http://alongpour.com/0218/chatom-vineyards/

She Wines

She Wines

The winery, Chatom Vineyards, is the vision of the proprietor Gay Callan, who moved to the Esmeralda Valley in Calaveras County in 1980. A native of San Francisco, Gay has helped establish a name for both herself and the Sierra Foothills, even when others thought she was nuts. Chatom’s website comments that “the majority of the local ranchers thought she was completely crazy for planting a vineyard in the Esmeralda Valley”. Like John Sweazey of Anaba Wines who we profiled two weeks ago, Gay has a background not in agriculture, but technology and marketing, making here solo move to the remote region even more intriguing. However, over the years, the region has gained recognition with wine enthusiasts and Chatom has risen as one of the finest names in Sierra Foothill wines.

The road has been a long but rewarding one for Gay. The vineyard was first planted in 1981, but it was not until 1990 that she decided to add a tasting room and winery on the premises. A full winery facility would not be completed until 1998, allowing all of Chatom’s wines to be produced on the estate. Judging from what I tasted at Chatom’s quaint tasting room, the results were worth the efforts. My only regret with Gay’s wines is that I did not buy more.

The prominent role of women at Chatom has been a point of distinction and it was with this in mind that Chatom’s She Wines line was released in the early 2000’s. Starting with a white blend and later adding a red (of which I bought several bottles of the 2005 vintage), part of the proceeds go to breast cancer research as well as the fight against women’s heart disease, the number one killer of women in the US. The 2005 Red blend, was a masterful blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, petit syrah, and sangiovese and was full of fruit goodness and spice.

Over all, I was highly impressed with the region and am anxious to return. The long history of the region, the sweeping hills and majestic oak trees make for a wonderful tasting experience.

Currently, Chatom Vineyards works with 13 varietals planted on 65 acres, including Chardonnay, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, Sangiovese and others.

Chatom Vineyards
1969 Highway 4, Murphys, CA 95229
(209) 736-6500

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Prudence Penny]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=275 2009-08-11T00:23:20Z 2009-08-11T00:23:20Z

An early cooking short movie circa 1937.
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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Strike Gold When You Wine and Dine in Calaveras]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=163 2009-07-20T14:05:44Z 2009-07-20T14:05:44Z  Newsome Harlow Tasting Room

Newsome Harlow Tasting Room

Get your taste buds ready for Calaveras County. You’ll think you struck gold as you partake in epicurean delights, hand-crafted brews and award-winning varietals. Calaveras, located in the heart of California’s Gold Country, has had an evolution of sorts that has drawn food lovers, beer enthusiasts and wine connoisseurs from near and far to sample the local flavor. Events celebrating locally grown and produced food and wine are sprouting up. The Winegrape Gourmet is such an event that will bring together the many flavors of Calaveras.

Dining in Calaveras can be as sophisticated or as down home and laid back as you’d like. From a swanky vegetarian restaurant to a family pizza parlor to a picnic in a vineyard and everything in between, there is a palate pleaser for everyone. Historic hotels offer guests an authentic dining atmosphere while many venues provide patio and sidewalk dining in the spring and summer months.

Local brew masters have found inspiration in a renewed interest in beer tasting. Fine brews can be had at a number of restaurants and bars, where the favorites hail from local breweries. If you can’t make up your mind, beer samplers offer the perfect solution. Beer and food pairings have added to the many Calaveras events centered on food and wine.

Calaveras Wine Country is flourishing at every bend. The quality wines being produced here are being recognized in national publications and are receiving top awards at regional, national and international competitions.* Local vineyards are gaining recognition as well through the labeling of wines created both locally and beyond Calaveras. Intimate wine tasting at over 25 wineries entices visitors year round. Calaveras wineries are family owned and operated so meeting the winemaker or owner is a common occurrence. Don’t be surprised when you walk away feeling like part of the family. Most wineries offer complimentary tasting and one even has chocolate fondue that pairs perfectly with their signature port!

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[The Tuolumne River wins NBC’s Golden Grape Award]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=119 2009-07-20T12:37:57Z 2009-07-20T12:37:57Z

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[Gold Country Wine Tasting]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=114 2009-07-20T12:32:23Z 2009-07-20T12:32:23Z

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Lisa Boulton http://gocalaveras.com <![CDATA[1972 Pepsi Commercial Calaveras]]> http://gocalaverasfoodie.com/?p=111 2009-07-20T12:27:39Z 2009-07-20T12:27:39Z

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