Recently due to a lack of communication among my roommates and me, we acquired too many marshmallows (not actually a thing though, you can never have too many). Ale and I love mallows so this wasn’t really an issue, but after I left for home for the holidays, I apparently felt a lack of mallows, so I decided to make some homemade ones. The process is much easier than I thought, but I won’t lie, any recipe using a candy thermometer makes me nervous. I just imagine a horrid accident where I’m left completely frozen in some sort of hardened candy shell like a sweet Han Solo, preserved until some noble Jedi licks me out. Luckily, that nightmarish scenario did not happen and the mallows turned out really well: light, airy, fluffy, tasty.
I felt bad for not experimenting with any sort of extract or flavoring (e.g. peppermint, orange, lemon, etc.) so I decided to give them a small, or yung if you will, dip in some chocolate. I chose bittersweet since the mallows were already pretty sweet. I tempered the chocolate, which despite my mother’s warnings, was not that hard to do either, you just need a sensitive thermometer for the job. With no unattractive, fatty crystallization on my chocolate, the mallows now look wonderful and I’ve been giving them out whenever I go to a friend’s house, just to spread some of my extra holiday cheer. Happy Festivus!
Once again the wonderful Deb of SK has provided me with this blessing of a recipe for the marshmallows.
About 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
3 1/2 envelopes (2 tablespoons plus 2 1/2 teaspoons) unflavored gelatin
1 cup cold water, divided
2 cups granulated sugar (cane sugar worked just fine)
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites or reconstituted powdered egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
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.
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. 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. 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). 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.
The next step is to temper some chocolate. I used semi-sweet chocolate chips, however you can use whatever type you like best. Beware that different types of chocolate temper at different levels. Here’s a good guide for tempering. The key is to heat it slowly, in a double boiler or with a large metal bowl over a pot with some water in the bottom. Use a chocolate thermometer or a very sensitive digital one to heat the 1/2 cup of the chocolate to about 120° F, remove it from heat and let it cool down to 80° F. Add the rest of the unmelted chocolate to the cooled chocolate and reheat (again slowly) to about 86° F stirring frequently and remove from heat. The chocolate should be ready for you to dip the marshmallows in!
For dipping, lay a piece of wax paper onto a cookie tray and put a wire cooling rack on top. Dip the top of the marshmallows into the chocolate and place, chocolate side up onto the cooling rack. Tempered chocolate will cool pretty quickly and won’t get the gross light brown tint that can happen if you don’t temper it. Let the marshmallows sit for about 10-15 minutes and then pop one in your mouth before you put them into an airtight container for storage!
peace ‘n luv,