It’s summer, which means grilling and being outside. Which means s’mores. I absolutely love s’mores. But they have to be the real thing, meaning none of those pre-packaged s’more flavored treats. The marshmallow is barely toasted, if at all. No, if you’re going to make a s’more, the marshmallow has to be completely black bubbly burnt. I catch mine on fire. Then I like to peel off the crisp black shell and eat it, then I stick the half-melted gooey center back into the fire and catch what’s left on fire too!
Unfortunately for me, my first attempt at graham crackers (back when I had a batch of home-made healthy marshmallows and enjoy life chocolate chips to go with them) were a fail. Only about half of them actually got completely crisp, and even then most of those were more hard than crisp. I used the recipe for plantain crackers from The Paleo Mom’s website as the foundation and added molasses and spices. The ones that didn’t harden up were like leather.
I didn’t try again because I wasn’t having any luck finding green plantains in the grocery store, but this past saturday, I was in luck! They had two big boxes of perfectly green plantains to work with, so I set about perfecting my graham cracker recipe and I think I’ve gotten it.
- 2 very green plantains
- 1/2 c. solid fat of choice (duck fat, tallow, and lard are all great choices for more savory crackers if you leave out the sweeteners and spices. Ghee and palm shortening are great for both sweet and savory versions. Coconut oil is good for the sweet version. Really, you can use any of the fats for either version, just be aware that the flavor of the fat will come through in the final product)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. cream of tartar
For the savory version of this cracker, you can stop there, or add some herbs and garlic. For the graham cracker version, keep going and add the following:
- 2 tbs. molasses
- 2 tbs. granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. ceylon cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg (or mace for strict AIP)
- 1/8 tsp. cloves
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Peel the plantains by cutting off both ends, then run the tip of your knife down one side through the skin. Use the cut to get the skin started and peel it away. Cut the plantain into medium chunks and add to the bowl of a food processor. Add the fat, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar for the basic version, herbs and/or garlic for a savory herb cracker, or the molasses, sugar, and spices for the graham cracker version. Run the food processor until it forms a smooth, thick paste with no lumps of plantain.
Spread the mixture onto the baking sheet. I found that the easiest way to get a really nice smooth and even layer was to take a second piece of parchment paper and lay it on top of your plantain paste, then set a second cookie sheet on top of that and press down to squish the batter between the two cookie sheets. You want it to be no more than 1/8″ thick. The thinner the better. Remove the top layer of parchment paper and second cookie sheet and bake for about 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and cut into 1.5-2 inch squares with a sharp knife or pizza cutter. Then return to the oven for another hour or so. The time it takes to bake depends on how thin you can get your batter. Thinner=less time, thicker=more time.
These will crisp up just a bit more after they cool, so if they’re still just a bit soft, they’re probably fine. Remove from oven and let cool on a cooling rack or paper towel. Luckily, I had some apple sauce and dipping graham crackers into apple sauce is almost as good as a s’more.