12 February 2011

Homemade Marshmallows!!!!!!

I can’t even believe how good these turned out. I thought the process would be more challenging, but it was more multi-step that was intensive.
I don’t even know how this desire came about, but I do know that I noticed several different recipes, but I went with Smitten Kitchen’s recipe and notes after doing my own research.
My notes and additions are in purple. Everything else is from SK.

Springy, Fluffy Marshmallows 
Adapted from Gourmet, December 1998

Prepare to get sticky!!! This is definitely NOT a mess-free endeavor.
Makes about 96 1-inch cubed marshmallows
About 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

3 1/2 envelopes (2 tablespoons plus 2 1/2 teaspoons) unflavored gelatin

1 cup cold water, divided

Oiled pan/powdered sugar
2 cups granulated sugar (cane sugar worked just fine)

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/4 teaspoon salt

Sugar cooking setup.
2 large egg whites or reconstituted powdered egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla (alternately: 1/2 of a scraped vanilla bean, 2 teaspoons almond or mint extract or maybe even some food coloring for tinting)

Oil bottom and sides of a 13- by 9- by 2-inch rectangular metal baking pan and dust bottom and sides with some confectioners’ sugar.

In bowl of a standing electric mixer or in a large bowl sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup cold cold water, and let stand to soften.

Egg whites in my new copper bowl!
In a 3-quart heavy saucepan cook granulated sugar, corn syrup, second 1/2 cup of cold 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 a candy or digital thermometer registers 240°F, about 12 minutes. (It was about 6 minutes for me--so be sure to watch the thermometer). Remove pan from heat and pour sugar mixture over gelatin mixture, stirring until gelatin is dissolved.

With standing or a hand-held electric mixer beat mixture on high speed until white, thick, and nearly tripled in volume, about six minutes if using standing mixer or about 10 minutes if using hand-held mixer. (Some reviewers felt this took even longer with a hand mixer, but still eventually whipped up nicely.)
In separate medium bowl with cleaned beaters beat egg whites (or reconstituted powdered whites) until they just hold stiff peaks. Beat whites and vanilla (or your choice of flavoring) into sugar mixture until just combined.
gelatin + cold water + time
Pour mixture into baking pan and don’t fret if you don’t get it all out (learning from my mess of a first round) (I took her notes to heart--read her blog for more, but I will tell you I feel the same way about loss--I try to get every drop out of every pan and utensil. It isn’t feasible with this recipe. The mixture is BEYOND sticky, and firms up quickly. Trust me when I say it is better to lick the beater than it is to try to scrape it off.) Sift 1/4 cup confectioners sugar evenly over top. Chill marshmallow, uncovered, until firm, at least three hours, and up to one day.

Run a thin knife around edges of pan and invert pan onto a large cutting board. Lifting up one corner of inverted pan, with fingers loosen marshmallow and ease onto cutting board. With a large knife trim edges of marshmallow and cut marshmallow into roughly one-inch cubes. (An oiled pizza cutter works well here too.) Sift remaining confectioners’ sugar back into your now-empty baking pan, and roll the marshmallows through it, on all six sides, before shaking off the excess and packing them away.

Do ahead: Marshmallows keep in an airtight container at cool room temperature 1 week.

Egg whites
Absolutely delicious.  For my birthday dinner with L's family, instead of heading to the Melting Pot (we are broke), L's mom and stepdad, stepsister and brother-in-law, are putting together their own fondue night for me.  My job is to bring the dippers for the chocolate fondue.  I'm bringing these marshmallows, and I am making homemade poundcake and rice krispie treats later today, and also bringing strawberries.  I'm just a little excited!!!! :)  




Cutting setup

cut up!

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