Monday, October 12, 2009

My long marshmallow nightmare is over.

Oh, sweet marshmallows. How I’ve missed you: your sugary squishiness, the way your outsides caramelize over a fire, your coyness as you peek up at me from a mug of hot cocoa. Worst of all, I thought I was fine—I didn’t realize the size of the marshmallow-shaped hole in my heart.

That was before Sweet & Sara.

It’s fall, and that means s’mores. S’mores traditionally mean gobs of sugared animal bone (ahem, gelatin) sandwiched between chocolate and graham crackers. Since I’ve been vegan, I’ve simply done without marshmallows. I admit, it’s been less than satisfactory at times. When my sister and I lived together, one night she decided to make s’mores over candles in our living room. It worked quite well for her, actually. I improvised a marshmallow-less s’more by holding a square of chocolate over a candle to soften it before smushing it between the graham crackers. I miscalculated, and melted chocolate quickly squashed the candle flame. In the battle of the s’more-making sisters, I was clearly the loser.

I vowed this would not happen again.

This is all to give you an appreciation of the spastic happy dance I did when Red and I found Sweet & Sara’s marshmallows in our grocery store. Poor man, I think he thought I was having a seizure. Now, normally I am skeptical of new vegan interpretations of non-vegan foods, having been disappointed countless times (see: cheese). However, bolstered by Easy Vegan’s in-depth evaluation of Sweet & Sara vs. Dandies (a veritable Great Marshmallow-Off), I was confident that it would be worth the risk.

Oh, how it was. I have not experienced such marshmallow ecstasy for years, since my Colorado friends and I illegally fired up the grill on my balcony and made (non-vegan) birthday s’mores in July. Red built a fire in our backyard fire pit, I gathered the marshmallows, vegan dark chocolate (non-vegan milk chocolate for him) and graham crackers—Nabisco graham crackers are vegan! tell everyone you know!—and we settled down to get our s’more on. He found the perfect marshmallow-roasting stick, and it served us well. The marshmallows roasted just like their cruelty-filled cousins, and squished between the graham crackers with just the right combination of gooey insides and crunchy outside. And with the dark chocolate—heaven. Not as sweet as the crappy Hershey’s I was raised on, and infinitely more satisfying. I managed to limit myself to two, since they were so rich and delicious, but I nibbled another marshmallow plain to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. I wasn’t: they’re yummy straight out of the package as well.

I would continue to sing the praises of Sweet & Sara, but we’re making soup for dinner. It’s a toss-up between African Sweet Potato Soup and Mexican Tortilla Soup, both from 30-Minute Vegan. For today, at least, I’m happy it’s fall.

Yup, it was pretty much like this. Photo courtesy of Sweet & Sara.


  1. Nabisco Graham Crackers are vegan?!? AAAAHHH!!! I'm buying them NOW. I've missed graham crackers so much :-(.

    And now I can get smores off my mind. Mmmm

  2. YES! The original crackers are vegan. The honey ones, of course, are not. I'm so glad you stopped by, and I'm enjoying your blog!

  3. Thank you so much for the kind words - we're glad you enjoyed our vegan marshmallows! Yay!

  4. Great picture, those look amazing! I can't wait to get my hands on some vegan marshmallows so I can make a proper batch of ooey gooey smores.

  5. mmmmmmmm, me & HR hunted ALL over Denver for these marshmallows this past summer! and we finally found them at the 5th Whole Foods we went to! They served us well on our month-long road/camping trip! yum yum yum!!!

  6. I LOVE s'mores- so cool that there are vegan options! :) YAY! I would have done a spastic dance as well for something equally exciting :)
    often Andrew also thinks I'm crazy.... hah.

  7. Oh, that looks yummy! (Can you believe I STILL haven't made S'mores!?)

    Did you happen to try the strawberry ones? I'm curious, but can't justify ordering - and paying shipping for - one lone pack of marshmallows online.

  8. Alas, they didn't have the strawberry ones. :( My husband would loooooooove them, so maybe I'll bite the bullet and order them one day. If I do, I'll be sure to tell you how they are!

  9. Shannon,

    I looooove Sweet and Sara marshmallows. Soooo yum! The Whole Foods at Mt. Washington is now carrying two yummy vegan specialty foods: Dandies (super yum!) and also Shreese (the smoked cheddar tastes remarkably like smoked gouda, if my memory serves me correctly). But, Dandies! Same price as Sweet and Sarah, but they don't need to be refrigerated.

    Hope you're well. Saw the little shout out you gave Brunie's in a comment under Liz Large's thing about Emily's. Thank you!

    I am like blog/internet stupid. So, signing off as myself (here) but as anonymous otherwise.

    Also, love your blog. Spent a long while reading it just now.