I was on a website that I frequent the other day and one of the gals on my regular thread mentioned that she had made marshmallows. She just wrote it like it was no big deal! I have to be honest, at that point, I wasn't processing what I was reading anymore. I was stuck 4 or 5 sentences back on the fact that she had MADE marshmallows! With her very own hands!
Marshmallows are one of those things that NEVER would have occured to me to make. I don't know why. I just always thought they came out of a machine. Ignorant, perhaps, but that was my thinking.
Well, my curiosity was peaked. I knew then and there that I HAD to make marshmallows. Really, just to say to someone: 'Oh, I made a batch of MARSHMALLOWS the other day!'
Before we go further, I just want to post a warning here. Marshmallows are part of that group of foods I like to refer to as 'diabetic disasters'. Here at the beautiful diabetic, I try to post recipes that are good for diabetics, that are well balanced and will even out your bloodsugar over some hours. This is NOT one of those recipes!
Where there are marshmallows, there's trouble.
So, without further ado, marshmallows:
Martha Stewart's Marshmallows (of course SHE would have a marshmallow recipe)
2 1/2 tablespoons unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
Confectioners' sugar (for dusting)
Combine gelatin and 1/2 cup cold water in the bowl of an electric mixer with whisk attachment. Let it stand 30 minutes:
Combine granulated sugar, corn syrup, salt and 1/2 cup of water in a small heavy saucepan; place over low heat and stir until sugar has dissolved. Wash down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush to dissolve sugar crystals.
Clip on a candy thermometer; raise heat to high. Cook syrup without stirring until it reaches 244 degrees (firm-ball stage). Immediately remove pan from heat.
(Ok, it got tricky here. I don't have CANDY thermometers lying around. I have a normal thermometer and a doggy thermometer. So, I interpreted the directions to read 'Bring it to a hard boil and remove it from the heat' Seemed to work just fine):
With mixer on low speed, slowly and carefully pour syrup into the softened gelatin. Increase speed to high:
beat until mixture is very thick and white and has almost tripled in volume, about 15minutes. Add vanilla; beat to incorporate.
This is the MOST exciting part about making marshmallows so far! Look at how GORGEOUS that is:
Generously dust an 8 x 12-inch glass baking pan with confectioners' sugar. Pour marshmallow mixture into pan. Dust with confectioners' sugar; let stand overnight, uncovered, to dry out.
Ok. So I did all of that. I kept uncovering them to look at them. I wish you could see them in person. They are SNOW white and have vanilla bean specks in them. I couldn't wait to get home from work today so we could take them out of the pan and turn them into proper marshmallows. Now, suprisingly, Martha really dropped the ball here on the instructions. How does one, A) get the marshmallow slab OUT of the pan and B) once said marshmallows are out, how does one cut them up?
Christopher and I debated about these things and eventually found out that A)Just work a knife around the edges of the pan and lift it out and, B) the best way to cut them was using a pair of household scissors. So, I cut the slab into long strips and then the strips into cubes, and Christopher rolled them in powedered sugar as they dropped to the counter. Covered in powdered sugar we took a moment to absorb the absolute GLORY of the moment. We had MADE marshmallows:
And to make things even MORE perfect, a few years ago, I had bought an antique marshmallow tin:
You have to smile when you read their slogan.
'The Original FOOD'