There is something special about the combination of graham crackers, Hershey’s chocolate bars, and roasted marshmallows. I don’t know what it is, but it makes me so dang happy. S’mores, to me, are always a sign that summer is here, and life is good.
S’more are generally a summer dessert staple for me — every year except for the summer of 1999, I think it was. I was at “bridge camp” (the year between day camp and overnight camp, when we had a night or two sleepover at camp) for Camp Choson, the camp for Korean adoptees that I attended for a decade. On the night of our sleepover at camp (or maybe the first night? I can’t remember whether there was more than one night), we had an enormous marshmallow roasting/s’more making party. I ate at least half a dozen s’mores that night, plus additional roasted marshmallows by themselves . . . and it was a while before I could face another s’more. But I managed to regain my love of s’mores.
When I’m using a grill (leftover from when my dad grills something for dinner, which is nearly every day during the summer), I am very particular about roasting marshmallows. I aim for the perfect shade of golden brown (well, until I get impatient — at that point, I call it done).
If I’ve really done it properly, the raw, uncooked center of the marshmallow will be gone — I’m not a big fan of non-roasted marshmallows, for all that I love them after the application of fire and heat. If I’m patient enough, I achieve results like this:
I perhaps achieve closer to roasted marshmallow perfection at home, but there’s something I love about roasting marshmallows at camp — the smell of the bonfire seeping into our clothing, the fire illuminating our faces in the dark, the fellow campers and counselors all gathered around as community.
Whatever the reason, whichever the numerous beloved memory, roasting marshmallows and making s’mores is an integral part of my summer experience.