This time of year I tend to go a little crazy baking everything I can. The holidays are a wonderful excuse to try new recipes. Something I’ve had my eye on, usually. Something I’ve been thinking about for a while. Last night it was homemade marshmallows.
I’ve had handmade marshmallows a few times at restaurants (like Sante here in Spokane) and always enjoyed their delicacy. I like the idea of being able to choose my own flavorings and adjust the sugar level to my liking. So, when I came across a recipe for marshmallows in a past issue of Bon Appetit magazine I decided now was the time to try it.
It turned out to be really simple. I made a layered marshmallow, lemon flavor on the bottom, and coconut on the top. For each you simmer the flavorings (lemon juice and coconut milk, respectively) with sugar and corn syrup until it reaches 230 degrees– at a point where the mixture is bubbling up and foaming, then add them to gelatin dissolved in water and beat them on high speed in a stand mixer until soft peaks form. Then you pour the fluff into a pan lined with parchment paper and let it cool. I made the lemon layer first, let it cool, then added the coconut layer. It didn’t take more than a few minutes to cool because the mixture is mostly cool when you pour it into the pan. I was surprised at how vigorously the mixture had to be beaten to get to the right consistency though. I don’t think my hand mixture could have done the job. This is one of the times when my stand mixer was absolutely indispensable.
Once the marshmallows cooled I lifted the parchment paper out of the pan and placed them, topside down, onto the butcher block that I had sprinkled and then smeared with powdered sugar. I was glad I didn’t skip that step. The marshmallows were cool but very sticky. Once I carefully pulled the parchment paper off, I smeared the top with powdered sugar too and then cut the marshmallows into 1″x1″ squares. Then I set about rolling any unpowdered edges in powdered sugar and put them in a container. I placed wax paper between the layers since the sticky factor was still pretty high.
Recipe for Blood Orange and Coconut Marshmallows is at epicurious.com