Any way you bite it, nothing says summer like a golden-brown marshmallow and melty chocolate sandwiched between two grahams. But how to achieve s’mores perfection? To find out, we visited The Resort at Paws Up, Montana’s only five-star property with a resident s’moreologist. Here, Conor Dannis shares his trick for crafting the tastiest treat.
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@howsweeteats via Instagram
| Credit: @howsweeteats via Instagram

Q. Let’s talk ingredients. Are you team graham cracker all the way?

You can't go wrong with graham crackers! Sometimes I'll use chocolate chip cookies for guests with a hardcore sweet tooth or gingersnaps for a holiday-themed s'more. It's really exciting to experiment with different flavor profiles.

Related Recipe: Cinnamon S'mores Tartlet

Q. Dark or milk chocolate?

It's really personal preference, but with either the absolute best way to melt chocolate is on the inside of the marshmallow while it's toasting. Preheat the tip of your skewer in the coals for about 30 seconds, then very carefully melt a hole lengthwise through the marshmallow, just big enough to fit a half-inch-by-one-inch rectangle of chocolate. Use a new skewer (but the same hole) for the chocolate and marshmallow combo and hold it over the hot coals until the marshmallow is toasted evenly and the chocolate is gooey.

Q. Any tips on getting that perfect caramelized marshmallow?

Never hold it directly over the fire! Cook on the upwind side of the fire, about six inches above the coals.

Q. Once you’ve mastered the basics, how do you take it to the next level?

How about add-ins! The ingredients on my s'moreologist shopping list include local meats, jalapeños, Montana huckleberries, apples, almonds, and house-made jams. My most recent s'more showstopper is melted French Raclette cheese, toffee, apple, and salted dark chocolate! This is one of my favorite s'mores to make because it really explores how far you can go with sweet and savory flavor combinations. To make it, start with the chocolate-melted marshmallow technique. When that is fully cooked, it goes onto the graham cracker topped with a thin slice of granny smith apple. I use a butane torch to melt the Raclette Cheese then slough it onto the 'mallow using a butter knife. Finally, add a teaspoon of toffee sauce (caramel is a good substitute).

Q. One bite or two?

I've seen it all at Paws Up, kids and parents gobbling up their s'mores in one bite, and then immediately reaching for seconds. The more discerning crowd might enjoy their s'mores slowly with a hand-crafted cocktail. I typically recommend hot-chocolate spiked with Baileys during the colder months and a White Russian in the summer. That said, I also like a s'more with some of our local Montana bourbon (Big Horn Bourbon or Fireweed Bourbon from Glacier Distilling Company), served neat.