homemade vanilla marshmallows

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I am not one of those people that thinks that everything is better homemade.  I believe there are certain things that are better in their highly processed, pre-packaged form with an unholy amount of preservatives thrown in for good measure.  I love me some top ramen and sometimes, I just really crave yellow cake made from a box mix.  I also really loved Kraft marshmallows as a kid – dabbling in both the miniature {perfect for my very sophisticated apres-ski hot cocoa} and large Jet Puffed {perfect for chubby bunny} varieties.  In full disclosure, I had never tasted a homemade marshmallow before making them myself {although I had seen them packaged up all pretty at swanky coffee and gourmet food shops}, but I knew I would love making them.  And I was right – they are so much fun to make.  I loved seeing the mixture triple in size to a large marshmallow cloud.  I loved how fluffy and springy they were once set.  And, more than anything, I loved seeing them melt gorgeously into my hot cocoa like a melting vanilla scented iceberg.  Delicious.

Recipe continued after the jump…

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Recipe

Vanilla Marshmallows

Adapted slightly from Smitten Kitchen

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 c. cold water, divided
  • 2 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c. light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large egg whites or reconstituted powdered egg whites
  • 1/2 of a scraped vanilla bean

Oil bottom and sides of a 13- by 9- by 2-inch rectangular metal baking pan {I used Pam and then used a paper towel to evenly coat the 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.

In separate medium bowl with cleaned beaters beat egg whites and insides of vanilla bean until the egg whites just hold stiff peaks. Beat whites into sugar mixture until just combined. Pour mixture into baking pan and don’t fret if you don’t get it all out. 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 {I coated my knife in confectioners’ sugar to prevent sticking}.  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.

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8 Responses to homemade vanilla marshmallows

  1. Pingback: public humiliation and mexican hot cocoa « { fleur de sel }

  2. chef mimi says:

    absolutely beautiful!!!

  3. Wonderful and really simple. I’ll have to give it a go myself. However, I believe everything is better homemade 😀

  4. Anne says:

    Oh wow –homemade marshmallows! I was just thinking how perfect this would be in your Mexican Hot Cocoa. Not to mention how cool would it be to give this away as gift and say… “yes this is homemade marshmallows.” Yum!

  5. Your homemade marshmallows along with your recipe for your Mexican Hot cocoa would be a perfect little gift. I have never tried to make this homemade before but you make it look so easy so may give that whirl this holiday season.

  6. Pingback: cheeseburgers and s’mores at tomales bay oyster company | { fleur de sel }

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