During mine and Josh’s culinary adventures, we have tried several recipes, and after we have cut ourselves, burned ourselves or become so overwhelmed by stress that we look like Linda Blair from “The Exorcist,” we admit that it is easier to buy the product than make it ourselves. But it wouldn’t be Kitchen Mischief if we didn’t try, right? However, I have to admit my latest quest into the unknown had very different results.
I decided to try to make marshmallows. I told people at work and they asked, “why would you WANT to make homemade marshmallows?” Well, for the adventure and I heard that once you’ve tasted homemade, you would never go back. It. Is. True. The marshmallows out of bag have that rough, leathery skin, like an unkempt bunion or elbow. The homemade marshmallows are soft and fluffy, like a baby lamb or a newborn Peep.
I went looking for a recipe and found that my culinary-sweetheart Ina Garten had one. She has never steered me wrong, so I will follow wherever she leads.
Gelatin Blooming — Gelatin must be allowed to “bloom.” This allows the gelatin time to absorb water and helps with a smooth texture. The best way to bloom gelatin is to sprinkle the desired amount into cool water. This prevents clumping.
Kid Safety — If you decide to make this easy recipe with your kids, just be very careful with the boiling sugar…even a small drip from this hot lava could cause very bad burns. Believe me. Very. Bad. Burns. 😦
3 packages unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
7 ounces sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
Combine the gelatin and 1/2 cup of cold water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and allow to sit while you make the syrup.
Meanwhile, combine the sugar, corn syrup, salt, and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
Raise the heat to high and cook until the syrup reaches 240 degrees F on a candy thermometer. Remove from the heat.
With the mixer on low-speed, slowly pour the sugar syrup into the dissolved gelatin.
Put the mixer on high-speed and whip until the mixture is very thick, about 15 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix thoroughly.
Sprinkle half the toasted coconut in an 8 by 12-inch nonmetal pan. Pour in the marshmallow batter and smooth the top of the mixture with damp hands. Sprinkle on the remaining toasted coconut.
Allow to dry uncovered at room temperature overnight.
Remove the marshmallows from the pan and cut into squares. Roll the sides of each piece carefully in confectioners’ sugar. Store uncovered at room temperature.
Need a Toasting Tip?
In a dry saute pan, add the coconut and place over medium heat. Continue to stir coconut until lightly brown.
I add a little melted semi-sweet chocolate to send these little, fluffy sugar cubes over the edge. Or imagine these babies on a S’more! Jesus take the wheel!
Yes, I could have purchased a boring bag of leathery marshmallows and made it easy on myself, but that wouldn’t have been fun…or mischievous. Well, I’m going back to my sugar coma. I need to rest up for my trip to the boiling-sugar burn unit. 😉