I know, I know. I probably don’t seem like the camping type of girl. I’m not going to spend my day trying to convince you otherwise. I got a lot of bug bites on that trip. And I can’t say I’m the best at rowing a canoe. BUT I will say that I actually do love camping.
Anyway…. one of the sweetest gals I know was also on the trip with me and she had brought some, uh, artisanal marshmallows? They were more homemade than jet puff, and they were good. I mean, really good. I don’t use italics lightly. We used them to make s’mores, and I think I died and went to heaven right then.
Then I came back. And I knew I had to make my own marshmallows sometime.
I was a little intimidated to. It’s one of those recipes that you really can’t just ‘wing-it’ and guess at what the ingredients might be. I figured there was a bunch of sugar, maybe gelatin, and probably a some-what scientific heating method involved.
And it’s true: homemade marshmallows are actually very easy to make but you will need a few special tools. You truly do need an electric stand mixer (while hand-held could work I don’t recommend it as it would involve too much juggling with really hot liquids) and you need a candy thermometer.
Don’t be afraid of the candy thermometer. But don’t think you can skip it either. Trust me. You need it. If you feel like you will never use it outside of marshmallows… well… that’s possibly very valid. But if you have dreams of: making hard candy, spinning sugar, creating fluffy delicious marshmallows; well then darling you need to gift yourself a candy thermometer. Just saying.
Homemade Marshmallows, makes around 2 dozen depending on how big you cut them. Adapted from Joy the Baker.
Needed: 1 cup cold water, 3 packages (each is 1/4 ounces) gelatin, 1 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup light corn syrup, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons (clear) vanilla extract, 1/3 cup powered sugar and 1/3 cup corn starch.
In a small bowl combine the powered sugar and corn starch. Spray a 9×12 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray and dust with half of the powdered sugar mixture. Set these aside.
Set up your stand mixer with a whisk attachment. In the bowl combine 1/2 cup water and the gelatin packets. No need to stir, but let them sit there and mutate for 10 minutes or so. (It’s not really mutating, but it will look weird, so don’t be alarmed.)
In the mean time combine 1/2 cup water, the sugar, the corn syrup and the salt in a medium size pot. Heat over high heat and stir to dissolve the sugar, 1 minute. Attach your candy thermometer and let it heat up to 240 F (this will take probably 6-10 minutes depending how high you turned your heat up to). Once the sugar mixture is hot enough turn off the heat and start your stand mixer (that had the gelatin in it). CAREFULLY pour the hot sugar-water into the mixer while it is turned on low. My mixer has a splash guard attachment and I found that was very helpful during this step.
Once you’ve added all the sugar water turn the mixer up to high and let it beat the marshmallow batter for 7-8 minutes until it’s fluffy and white. Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet and cover with the remaining powdered sugar mixture. Let this set over night, then plop it out on a cutting board and use a pizza cutter to slice into squares.
Optional: make midnight s’mores. Make your brother join you in the cold to toast marshmallows on the grill. Use force if you have to. I love these in s’mores. You could also add these to hot chocolate, or heck, just eat them. They is good.
Enjoy! xo. Emma