My semester finishes right around Christmas time, but even though there is a time crunch I always make time to enjoy some fun in the kitchen. I was asked to contribute a sweet treat to a gift basket for a special lady, and one of my ideas was something I’ve wanted to make for a long time – homemade marshmallows. A friend of mine was so surprised, not realizing that it is possible to make your own marshmallows! But you can. Now that I have made them, I will never, ever go back to the store-bought variety.
These pillow-soft beauties are so much fun to make, and the taste and texture are unreal. After scouring Pinterest for ideas, I was blown away to see so many varieties of marshmallow recipes – Kahlúa, peppermint, and maple are just a few. I made a classic vanilla marshmallow for my first try, from a recipe on a blog called This Southern Girl Can. I’m not sure if this blog is still in production, but the recipe is there.
In my kitchen, I had Knox Gelatine and a beautiful candy thermometer from a grocery haul back in the States, so this was a huge help in getting me started, since baking supplies are not predictably available in Korea. Also, real vanilla is an important ingredient and I am grateful to have it. When you are doing the classic variety, I recommend using the best vanilla extract that you can procure.
If you try this recipe, I can give a few tips. First, be ready for powdered sugar and corn starch to get everywhere. And that’s ok! Next, there is some patience involved with the recipe, though it may be simple. You’ll be bringing the sugar syrup up to temperature, and it shouldn’t be hurried. There will also be a lot of mixing once the syrup is added to the gelatin. Finally, the marshmallow needs to set for a minimum of four hours (preferably overnight), so be prepared to wait. If you follow instructions, you’ll be rewarded with tender, cloud-like confections that are giftable.
They’d be great in a hot cocoa, but also in a s’more, a homemade whoopee pie, cake, or to dip in chocolate fondue. Or do as I do and eat them au naturel.
That’s it for today! I have a cookie-making Zoom session scheduled for tomorrow with my niece. I plan to make breakfast cookies, and I’ll share how they turn out.
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