When I was a kid I went on a school field trip to a marshmallow factory. My memory is a little fuzzy but I do remember we drove a long way in a big yellow bus and we got to eat fresh marshmallows in many colors. Who knew marshmallows came in that many pretty pastel colors? At five, I sure didn't. The fluffy fabulousness that came from that factory had me on cloud nine and started a life long marshmallow obsession.
A few tools are essential to marshmallow making including a candy thermometer and stand mixer. I have needed a reason to get a candy thermometer for a while now. What have I been thinking parading around the kitchen without one for so long? Thank you marshmallows for again exposing me to cool stuff.
Marshmallow making seemed like it should be such a complicated endeavor. Maybe because my only experience in making them involved an industrial factory. Fortunately, it's not scary or difficult at all. In fact, it's quite easy. So easy I wondered why I don't make them all of the time. The fresh marshmallows are heads and shoulders above the store-bought variety. Try it out, you'll be hooked too.
1 cup confectioners sugar
3 1/2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup cold water
2 cups granulated sugar (plus extra for optional dusting)
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup hot water (about 115 F)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla (click here to see my favorite vanilla)
Oil bottom and sides of a 13x9x2 inch rectangular baking pan and dust bottom and sides with some confectioners sugar.
Preping the dish.
In a bowl of a standing electric mixer or in a large mixing bowl sprinkle gelatin over cold water and let stand to soften.
In a large, heavy saucepan with a candy thermometer attached, cook granulated sugar, corn syrup, hot water and salt over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to moderate and boil mixture without stirring until the candy thermometer hits 240 F, about 12 minutes. Remove pan from heat and pour sugar mixture over gelatin mixture, stirring until gelatin is dissolved.
With standing or a hand-held mixer, beat mixture on high speed until white and thick and nearly three times in volume, about six minutes. The mixture will start looking like marshmallow fluff.
In a large bowl using clean beaters (I used my hand held) beat egg whites until they just hold stiff peaks. Beat whites and vanilla into sugar mix until just combined. Don't over mix here. Pour mix into baking pan and sift 1/4 confectioners sugar evenly over top. Chill marshmallows uncovered until firm at least three hours and up to one day. For me, the marshmallows were plenty firm at the three hour mark.
Egg whites and vanilla mixture
Take a butter knife to the sides of the baking pan to loosen the marshmallows, they should easily come out of the pan. Slice with a knife or cookie cutter into the desired size and shape. For extra sparkle the marshmallows can be rolled in granulated sugar. For fun, I put a few on a candy sticks to make marshmallow pops.
Ready for the fridge
Let your imagination run wild and have fun! I'm thinking some orange pumpkin marshmallows are in order next.
Marshmallows, pillowy, dreamy goodness!