Pizza Lab #21: S’mores Pizza
August is one of my favorite months. And yet it’s a shame this August has been one of the coldest ones in recent history, here on Long Island. We might be approaching Fall at an annoying pace, but that doesn’t mean we can’t squeeze out a few more weeks of Summery activities, so long as the weather doesn’t go completely to hell and we somehow end up with snow in September. We decided to squeeze in one last grilled pizza for the season, and ohhh man was it a good one. Pizza Lab takes on the firepit favorite, s’mores, marking our very first grilled dessert pizza.
Admittedly, I have to confess I don’t even eat s’mores that often, and have kind of a bone to pick with them. Don’t get me wrong, s’mores are delicious. And they’re pretty simple to make. How can anyone not enjoy them? The problem lies in the fact that they’re easy to throw together, yes, but they’re hard to make well.
Ideally, you want the chocolate to be melty and gooey, but that always begs the question of how the hell are you supposed to accomplish that? Some people employ the spatula method, in which you stick a graham cracker onto a metal spatula, with chocolate on top, and hold that in the flame. It works decently well but you need a long, heavy duty, metal spatula to accomplish this. And one of the most inconvenient properties of holding metal to a flame, is that it tends to burn you.
Another option is to simply stick your hot, roast marshmallow onto the chocolate and just hope that somehow the residual heat of the molten sugar will somehow be enough to liquify the solid chocolate (spoilers: it never is).
Nonetheless, this pizza solved the eternal problem of trying to get all your s’mores ingredients to be perfectly melty and delicious. We began by sprinkling chocolate chips onto the dough, and parcooked it in the oven, as we usually do with grill pizzas, so that the dough would be firm enough to place on the grill. After a few minutes of baking, the dough was firm and the chocolate was easily spreaded into a layer of liquid chocolatey goodness.
Obviously the next step in anything s’mores-related is the marshmallow. We opted for marshmallow creme, also known as fluff, since its spreadability and smooth nature made perfect sense for a pizza. Originally we envisioned the chocolate on the top with marshmallow on top, however it makes more whimsical sense to have the marshmallow serve as the “cheese” for this pie. The sugar would caramelize similar to cheese’s browning in an oven, whereas chocolate tends to scorch easily.
With the chocolate and marshmallow on top, it was time to load this baby onto the grill. Unlike previous attempts where the pizza tended to burn a little on the bottom, we set the flame to medium this time to prevent the crust from browning too much. Grill lines are nice, but not when they’re death-ass black. We then sprinkled cinnamon sugar around the crust, since we tend to add in crust gimmicks for dessert pizzas. The rationale here was that cinnamon graham crackers are a thing, so it should fit in nicely. Additionally, not that it was particularly necessary, but we threw some graham cracker crumbs on top as a garnish, and actually it came out looking pretty nice.
The most pleasant surprise about this pizza was that it wasn’t anywhere as messy as you’d expect, and incredibly easy to eat. And don’t undersell that aspect either. That’s a huge development considering the other big downfall of s’mores is that they’re impossible to get into your mouth cleanly. Oh great whoa to the person who eats them at a dimly-lit campfire, as you’ll never see how ridiculous you look until you go back inside and see the overtly sexually humorous overtones of having sticky white goop all over your face. The sad part about all that is that I’d estimate probably 9 out of 10 s’mores are eaten at a dimly lit campfire or firepit. So you’re destined to look ridiculous… unless of course you eat this pizza.
In addition to not making you look like a mentally-deficient manchild who can’t eat food correctly, the s’mores pizza also tastes frigging amazing! S’mores are really yummy, no one can argue that point. Chocolate and marshmallow creamy goodness complemented by firm, earthy graham is a winning combination. This pizza delivers that flavor combo perfectly without the mess. What’s even cooler was the melted chocolate managed to flow downwards into the crust’s divots and bubbles, creating these pockets of chocolate that offer lots of variety in the pie.
I don’t want to sound too over the top, but honestly this is potentially the greatest dessert pizza we’ve made to date. That’s impressive considering that we’ve made almost ten of them so far, and we seemed to have hit a lull in quality with them before this. It tastes completely like a s’more and yet, somehow even better. It’s kind of like the excess of chocolate and the extra creamy marshmallow fluff combine with the buttery crust to form a super-s’more. Not size-wise, but rather it managed to taste more like what s’mores are supposed to, than most real s’mores. Don’t even ask me how that works, it just does. One final point is that it saved incredibly well. A quick trip to the microwave made it taste just as good as it did on day one.
Chocolatey Pizza Perfection