Monday, April 9, 2012

Day 100: Homemade Marshmallows

Happy 100 days of blogging to me! Wow, how time flies when you're having fun!! I hope you have as much fun reading it as I do baking and writing it.  I hope I have inspired you to try some new recipes and and maybe even found some new favorites.
For today's sweet, I am sharing with you something that I have wanted to make for a long time - Homemade  Vanilla Marshmallows. I mentioned to my husband what I was making and he was kind of speechless and befuzzled! He assumed that marshmallows were only sold in bags in the grocery store and had no idea that they could be made in my very own kitchen.

I have seen shows on TV that show how marshmallow is made and it always looks so sticky and time consuming. Until I saw a post on Sweetapolita where she made Homemade Puffy Cloud S'mores. I decided to just borrow the marshmallow recipe portion from the s'mores and give it a try.

My idea that it would be time consuming and messy was surprisingly wrong. It was very easy and only took about 20 minutes to make. This is definitely a plan-ahead recipe, because the marshmallow has to set for 6 hours after cooking. I was really wanting to flavor these with extract, but for my first time, I wanted to keep them the normal vanilla flavor to compare them to the store bought version. I really enjoyed eating these. The flavor was great and the texture was light and fluffy.  Definitely better than store bought. 

This would not be one of those recipes that I would make very often, but I will try this again and use some sort of flavoring other than vanilla. It would be fun to cut into shapes with cookie cutters for a fun occasion or holiday!

Homemade Vanilla Marshmallow
Yield: About 2 dozen 1-1/2" mallows

*the bloom
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons unflavored powdered gelatin
  • 1/2 cup cold water

*the syrup
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup, divided
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

*the mallowing
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Classic Coating (below), plus more for dusting

  1. Lightly coat an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk together the gelatin and cold water in a small bowl and let soften for 5 minutes.
  3. Stir together the sugar, 1/4 cup of the corn syrup, water, and salt in a medium saucepan over high heat. Boil, stirring occasionally, until the temperature reaches 240°F. Meanwhile, pour remaining 1/4 cup corn syrup into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Microwave gelatin on high until completely melted, about 30 seconds. Pour into the mixer bowl. Set the mixer speed to low and keep it running.
  4. When the syrup reaches 240°F, slowly pour it into the mixer bowl. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 5 minutes. Increase to medium-high and beat for 5 more minutes. Beat on the highest setting for 1 to 2 minutes more and beat in the vanilla; finished marshmallow will be opaque white, fluffy, and tripled in volume. Pour it into the prepared pan, using an offset spatula to smooth it into the corners. Sift coating evenly and generously over top. Let set for at least 6 hours in a cool, dry place.
  5. Use knife to loosen the marshmallow from the edges of the pan. Invert the slab onto a coating-dusted work surface and dust it with more coating. Cut into whatever size pieces you wish (a pizza cutter works great for squares). Dip the sticky edges of the marshmallows in more coating, patting off the excess.
  6. Super vanilla-ize these mallows by adding a scraped vanilla bean or dab of pure vanilla bean paste along with the vanilla extract.

Classic Coating: 1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar + 1 cup cornstarch or potato starch
Sift the ingredients together in a large bowl or combine them in a food processor.

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