Saturday, November 03, 2007

The Trip - Making Marshmallows

I've learned quite a bit during our stay with my aunt and some of her kids. My aunt and her daughter bake desserts that they sell at the farmer's market most weekends, and one of the treats they make is marshmallows. From scratch.

I had never thought about making marshmallows from scratch. The whole idea sounds foreign. Marshmallows come in plastic bags. They come in large (normal) size or small. The small ones come in white or pastel colors. If you leave them in the cupboard too long, they turn into white (or pastel) cardboard. That's it. That's the sum total of the world's accumulated knowledge about marshmallows. Or so I believed.

But my aunt has a recipe (who knew?). And she made it, while we made crucial decisions--raspberry flavoring. And what a good choice that was, since they'd be chocolate-dipped! Here's how it works:

I didn't get a picture of the first part, which is melting something (corn syrup? sugar?) on the stove until the candy thermometer hits the magic temperature. Then you slowly add the melted stuff to the mixer bowl on low, with the whisk attachment. When it's all in the mixer, you speed up the mixing, after protecting your kitchen by wrapping plastic wrap around the mixer.

After it starts thickening, you can remove the plastic wrap and let it keep mixing. In a while, it starts looking like marshmallow creme.

Then you scrape it into a glass baking pan and smooth it out with wet fingers to keep them from sticking. And you let it sit uncovered (my aunt covers it loosely with a flour-sack-style dish towel to keep it clean) for 8 hours while it does its thing. Then you cut it with a wet knife to keep it from sticking (my mom and I each snitched a piece).

You can sprinkle it with powdered sugar and call it good. But what would be the point when the other alternative is to dip it in melted chocolate? Use wet fingers to keep them from sticking.

And you set the dipped squares onto powdered sugar, or powdered sugar with toasted coconut, or powdered cocoa with toasted almonds, or whatever powdered something your heart desires, to keep it from sticking.

They taste NOTHING like the substances in the plastic bags that try to pass themselves off as marshmallows. These are delicate, foamy the way they should be, mellow and rich, and ours have a hint of raspberry beneath the chocolate coating. Pure delight!

My aunt sent us home with the recipe.


Veronica said...

May I please have a copy of the marsmallow recipe?

Thank you,

Bekah said...

My Mom makes hand dipped chocolates of all assortments every year. When I lived at home, my job was to squish (knead, really, but you know me - I can't just do it the way I'm supposed to. I squish it.) the fondant to make it really creamy so she could dip it. She's done marshmallows before (that looked much like your pictures, though it must be a different recipe because I don't remember hte mixer step at all) but she hates making them, so she quit. But I loved eating those because you'd bite through the hard chocolate and then there was all that melty marshmallow...mmmm.

I'm ready for Christmas to eat more of her treats! I should learn how to make them and carry on the legacy.

janice said...

Oh No...

You can't post pictures and yummy descriptions and NOT give us the recipe.

Please, Please, please!

I would love to have it for the holidays. I even have a Kitchen Aid mixer like your anuts.

s.j.simon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
s.j.simon said...

lol. did you know that chocolate was banned in switzerland for many years. read this

cousin a.d. said...

My mother an I want to thank you all for your kind responses to our marshmallows. And that was just the pictures. Wow! The recipe is copyrighted but can be found on the Food Network site. Just search marshmallow recipes. Ours contain no eggs. She also didn't mention we used chocolate bars as the dipping agent. These are rich, very satisfying and a small piece goes a long way. By the way cousin, you need to add a picture of my cheesecake. Love ya.

Delta said...

YES! A recipe! Thanks "Skye's cousin!"

I love the photos, too, btw.

SkyePuppy said...

Cousin A.D.,

Thanks for the recipe help! We've been out of internet contact for a few days.

I'll see about a picture of the cheesecake. I'm pretty sure I heard my mom promising my sister that we'd bring the cheesecake for Thanksgiving dessert. {Darn! I hate to have to share.} It's still in the freezer.

The scones are gone (wonderful!), so no pictures...