Saturday, November 9, 2013

Homemade Vanilla Marshmallows

This weekend was a weekend for coffee and marshmallows.
Homemade marshmallows.
All week I've been blog hopping looking at one marshmallow recipe
after another, and I had to try the recipe for myself.
All the bloggers are raving about how amazing these marshmallows
are, and how you'll forever be changed into a marshmallow
snob (in the best way possible)…
Sooo, I had to give these lovelies a go.
I decided to use Martha Stewart's recipe for this first-time project,
and I'm so happy with how the little beauts turned out (despite the messiness).
You can find the recipe here.

First things first, my advice: have everything prepped/measured out and ready to go before you even start, and read, then re-read, the recipe and directions. 
I also read through Smitten Kitchen's blog post (found here) because I trust
her, and she always has fantastic advice and detailed instructions…
Her main advice, DO NOT SCRAPE THE BOWL while it's mixing…
it will cause a huge mess you don't want or need.

Start by dissolving your gelatin packets in the water into your stand mixer bowl, then move 
onto the sugar syrup. You will need a candy thermometer for this process.
Add your water and corn syrup first, then add the sugar carefully.
When making a sugar syrup, you want to be careful not to get sugar on the sides of
the pan (they drill this into your brain in culinary arts) as that will cause crystallization - no bueno.
I added my sugar to the middle of the water, with the measuring cup almost touching the water
as I gently poured the sugar in.
Turn on the heat ;)
I know many of you will be tempted to stir the sugar water, don't do it.
Just let the sugar do it's thing, and if needed, a gentle swirl of the pan will suffice, but do not
stir with a utensil.
 Keep a cup of water and pastry brush nearby, if you swirl the pan, dip the brush in water and run along
the sides of the pan right above the sugar syrup - this helps prevent crystallization.
Let the syrup boil till it reaches between 238-240 degrees Fahrenheit.
At one point, my syrup decided it wanted to grow (aka: boiling upwards),
if you encounter this, just brush the water above the sugar, and you can
even put the temp down a smidge. I kept my temp at med-high the whole time.
Once the syrup hits 240, gently pour the syrup into your stand mixer with the 
speed on low - pour in a med-slow, steady flow on the side of the bowl.
Slowly bring the mixer speed up to medium, then high.
For me, this process took a very long time, it seemed… also, I didn't
keep time, since I'm horrible with that part… ha...ha.
I felt like I was stuck in this soft-peak stage for ages… it also didn't help that I was going to
be late for my language class.
Nonetheless, the marshmallows turned out great.
My personal advice, which helps me from becoming impatient: walk away from the mixer for
a couple minutes…unfortunately, staring at the mixture does not bring a stiff peak any sooner...
I added my vanilla at this ribbon-like phase, but the recipe tells you to add it when it's stiff,
which is probably better, but I'm sometimes impatient.
Once your fluffy goodness gets a stiff peak, pour your mixture into a greased, powdered sugar dusted 9x13 pan. Smooth with an offset spatula, and then dust 1/4 cup of powder sugar evenly over the surface. Leave them to firm up, uncovered, for at least 3 hours.
After the dreaded wait, dust a working surface with powder sugar. Use a knife to loosen the edges
of the marshmallows, and using your fingers, gently "dump" the 'mallows out. And dust with powdered
sugar. 
Spray your cutting knife with a bit of veg oil, then begin cutting…
Gently toss squares in powder sugar to coat all sides, and then [gently] dust off excess
Lastly, enjoy in your morning coffee…. or hot cocoa for yourself or little kiddos. And thoroughly enjoy the scrumptious, fluffy marshmallows you just made from scratch…
You'll never want a store bought marshmallow again :)
(ps. do you love my Christmas mug?! I'm totally in the Christmas spirit already, with the baking & [Christmas] music/movies! I LOVE Christmas!)
My favorite thing about these gooey yummies, besides how good they taste, is how long they last. As a kid, I always hated how quickly marshmallows melted in my hot chocolate, but these little guys lasted till the very last sip!
Hope you all enjoyed this post!
Have a wonderful Saturday!
.xoxo.












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