Chocolate Chip Smores Bars Recipe

Instead of quilts, today I’m sharing one of our favorite summer desserts.  It’s also one of the easiest.  My daughter and I started making them last summer, and we take them to potlucks all season long.  It’s the first pan to empty every time!  These chocolate chip smores bars are perfect for a summer night when everyone would love smores but there’s no fire.

And they’re the perfect amount of gooey, with the toasted marshmallow, melted chocolate, and cookie dough, plus the crunch of a graham cracker on the bottom.  Fun, and easy to make, these chocolate chip smores bars will be a hit!

To make these bars, you will need:

1 box graham crackers

1 bag large marshmallows

1 large symphony chocolate bar (the giant size)

ingredients for your favorite chocolate chip cookie dough, or see below for the recipe I use.  (scroll to bottom of post for full recipe)

Start by spraying the bottom of an 11 x 17 inch cookie sheet with nonstick spray.  Then break your graham crackers into halves and cover the bottom of the pan.  Break the chocolate into pieces and place one on every cracker.

Using a pair of scissors, cut each marshmallow in half.  If you don’t do this, they tip over and don’t stay in place!  Place the two halves cut side down on top of the chocolate and crackers.

Mix up a batch of cookie dough, and then with your hands just drop little pieces of it all over the pan.

Then you bake it and the magic happens.  When it’s golden brown, and the marshmallows are melted and toasty on top, pull it out of the oven.

Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars.  Serve and enjoy!  Now, please excuse me while I go make some.

Chocolate Chip Smores Bars Recipe

Ingredients:

1 box graham crackers

1 bag large marshmallows

I giant sized Symphony bar (or you can use several of the small Hershey’s chocolate bars, but they don’t melt as well.)

for the cookie dough:

1 cup butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 tsp baking soda

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

2.5 cups flour

12 oz chocolate chips

 

Instructions:

Soften butter, then beat in large mixing bowl until creamy.  Add sugar, brown sugar and baking soda.  Beat till combined.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat till combined.  Add flour and mix until combined.  Stir in chocolate chips.

 

Assembly:

Spray large 11 x 17 baking baking pan with nonstick spray.  Break graham crackers in half and cover bottom of pan.  Break chocolate and place 1-2 pieces on each cracker.  Cut 1 marshmallow in half for each graham cracker half, and place cut side down on top of chocolate and crackers.

With your hands, gently place small handfuls or chunks of cookie dough all around the pan on top of and in between marshmallows.

Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes, watching for the dough and marshmallows to begin turning golden brown on top.

Remove from oven, cool completely, cut and serve!

4th of July Trivia

Today is July 1st, and my favorite holiday is days away.  I always host a 4th of July breakfast for my family and some guests.  My favorite activity at these breakfasts is a short round of trivia, centered in American revolutionary history and our founding documents.  Every year I create a new one, print it out, and let everyone guess at the answers.  While the holiday is mostly full of family, food, and fireworks, I also love inviting my family to pause, remember, and really think about the holiday.  I decided to share my 4th of July trivia with you this year, just for fun.  You’ll find a link at the end of this post.

I hang buntings and flags in June for Flag Day and they mostly stay up until the end of July.  I suppose flags and red, white and blue will always remind my kids of summer.  Yesterday we hosted a large gathering and it was nice to have the porch looking festive and welcoming.

I got new planters this year because my last set were broken.  I’m still heartbroken about that; I don’t think I’ll ever find planters I love as much.  Still, the gray is pretty and I always love flowers on the porch.

This antique star has been a fixture at my house for many years.  I decided to prop it among the flowers, and I love how it stands out among the planters.

My fresh boxwood wreath from Christmas still graces the front door.  I have a long blue bunting with stars on it, and tied an enormous bow around the wreath.  It’s dry now, but still pretty, and I’m enjoying it.  We actually had some birds try to build a nest in it, against the window a month or two ago.

A terrible idea, which they quickly abandoned.  It was fun to hear the birdsong RIGHT outside the door, and to watch them.

I set up the table for early morning visits and added pillows to the bench, so my husband can work outside.

We stood to sing all verses of the national anthem on Sunday in church, and  I loved being in a congregation that sang with feeling and conviction.  It was a perfect beginning to a patriotic week.

So my porch is ready, the flags are flying, and the 2024 4th of July trivia is prepped.  There are 2 PDFs for you.  One with questions only, so you can print as many copies as you wish and pass them out, or print one and do the trivia vocally as a group.  The second one is questions with answers.  Click here to get your copy!

I wish you a joyful, thoughtful, and safe Independence day!

-Jennifer

Orange Peel Applique Quilt – Tribute to Lafayette

American Revolutionary history is a favorite of mine.  I love the lessons I learn from history, love thinking about how it actually didn’t have to go the way it did.  Reading about the lives and decisions of people who were just trying to do the right thing in the moment really inspires me.  I think the American revolutionary war, it’s events and those who played a role, is my #1 favorite subject.  I’m sure I’ve written here before that the 4th of July is also my favorite holiday.  So what does an orange peel applique quilt have to do with all that?

Well, let me share!  First of all, I finished my orange peel applique quilt!  I shared here how long it took me to hand stitch all the blocks.  In fact, I really enjoyed re-reading that post, as I needed a reminder to just keep “stitching” in life.  Second, my quilt is a tribute to Gilbert de Mortier, better known as the Marquis de Lafayette. Legend credits him as the inspiration for the orange peel quilt block.  And the Marquis de Lafayette was an important contributor to the American Revolution.

The legend states that Lafayette was invited to a banquet celebrating the colonists’ victory in the revolutionary war.  After the dinner, the guests were offered fruit.  Lafayette selected an orange, and it is said that he sliced it into four quarters before peeling it.  Afterwards, a female guest picked up his discarded orange peel segments and used them as the inspiration for her next quilt.  Of course, I have no idea if this is true, but it’s a popular legend and it makes me smile.  I love stories like that.  Perhaps I should name this quilt “Lafayette’s Oranges”!

I chose edge to edge quilting in a “feathers forever” design. Melissa at Sew Shabby Quilting, quilted it for me.  It’s got an 80/20 batting in it, and because of all the applique, it’s a heavier quilt.  Although I’m calling it a summer finish, I think my children will particularly love it in the fall and winter.

I used only two fabrics in the quilt top, and both are dark in value.  Not like me.  But I still love them together.  I added a bright pick piece to the backing from Heather Bailey.  I wish I had lots more of this fabric!  It’s fun to have something unexpected in this quilt.  I found some leftover yardage of the solid, and used it for the binding.

Look above the quilt – we have so many cherries this year!  I feel like there are more cherries than leaves.  Right now they’re a bright red – they will ripen to a much deeper color.  We’re excited to eat them!

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