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Homemade Marshmallows (by Alton Brown)

I’m not a huge marshmallow fan, unless it’s in a s’more, and then for me it’s more about the chocolate.

This summer my sis brought down marshmallows from Jones Brothers. I was shocked at how much better they were than store-bought jet fluff. They are amazing toasted, like crispy, crusty sugar pillows with airy, velvety, creamy centers. (Nerdy description? Believe me, that’s the shortened version.)

Two Toasted Mallows

I wondered if it was possible to make them at home, so I found a few recipes and watched Martha make them online. While researching, I was presented with an opportunity to make 80-ish mallows for a gathering. I wanted to learn to make them anyway, so I offered my services figuring that I had a few weeks of trial and error.

I’m happy to say that I’m getting the hang of it. Though that first batch didn’t go so well. (Whatever you do, DON’T touch the fluff with your hands – it’s the stringiest mess which consequently attaches your hands to whatever you touch.)

The best recipe I found: Homemade Marshmallows by Alton Brown. He even has a video demonstration which really came in handy (click the video tab on this link).

My observations:

– If you want bonfire-worthy, big-stick-sized mallows, use an 8″ by 8″ pan, cut them thick, and you’ll get 16 to 20 per pan.

– If possible, try to make them when there is another person around to help you pour the syrup into the gelatin – if you have heavy pots and are clumsy, you might get burned!

– I’ve read that you can substitute flavorings to make alternative flavored mallows, like peppermint, rum, and almond.

– I highly recommend getting a heat-proof silicone spatula for scraping. This was a perfect tool for scooping out the fluff into the prepared pan. Also, try scooping out the biggest glob possible – try to get it all out of the bowl at once. Otherwise, the oil on the spatula causes the mallow loaf (?) to separate in the middle.

– No fire available? Try this s’more snack? Divide graham crackers into desired size (halved or quartered) and cut mallows to match. Melt 4-6 ounces high-quality chocolate chips (60% cocoa) and 1-2 tablespoons butter (in double-boiler or in microwave stirred at 10-second increments – do not burn). Dip mallows in chocolate, attach to crackers. If desired dip chocolate chip in melted chocolate and add on the top. Let cool. Store in air-tight container.

– And did I mention DON’T touch it with your hands? Sticky city.

Homemade Marshmallows by Alton Brown

Ingredients

Marshmallows

  • 3 packages unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup ice-cold water, divided
  • 12 ounces granulated sugar, approximately 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • Nonstick spray

Directions

Step 2: Cooking on the Stove

Place the gelatin into the bowl of a stand mixer along with 1/2 cup of the water. Have the whisk attachment standing by.

In a small saucepan combine the remaining 1/2 cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt. Place over medium high heat, cover and allow to cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Uncover, clip a candy thermometer onto the side of the pan and continue to cook until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F, approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Once the mixture reaches this temperature, immediately remove from the heat.

Gorgeous Whipped Mallow

Turn the mixer on low speed and, while running, slowly pour the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin mixture. Once you have added all of the syrup, increase the speed to high. Continue to whip until the mixture becomes very thick and is lukewarm, approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Add the vanilla during the last minute of whipping. While the mixture is whipping prepare the pans as follows.

For regular marshmallows:

Combine the confectioners’ sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Lightly spray a 13 by 9-inch metal baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. (Or 8 by 8-inch metal pan for extra large mallows). Add the sugar and cornstarch mixture and move around to completely coat the bottom and sides of the pan. Return the remaining mixture to the bowl for later use.

When ready, pour the mixture into the prepared pan, using a lightly oiled spatula for spreading evenly into the pan. Dust the top with enough of the remaining sugar and cornstarch mixture to lightly cover. Reserve the rest for later. Allow the marshmallows to sit uncovered for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Turn the marshmallows out onto a cutting board and cut into 1-inch squares using a pizza wheel dusted with the confectioners’ sugar mixture. Once cut, lightly dust all sides of each marshmallow with the remaining mixture, using additional if necessary. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

For miniature marshmallows:

Combine the confectioners’ sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Line 4 half sheet pans with parchment paper, spray the paper with nonstick cooking spray and dust with the confectioners’ sugar mixture.

Scoop the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 1/2-inch round piping tip. Pipe the mixture onto the prepared sheet pans lengthwise, leaving about 1-inch between each strip. Sprinkle the tops with enough of the remaining cornstarch and sugar mixture to lightly cover. Let the strips set for 4 hours or up to overnight.

Cut into 1/2 inch pieces using a pizza wheel or scissors dusted with the confectioners’ sugar mixture. Once cut, lightly dust all sides of each marshmallow with the remaining sugar mixture and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

© Dorene Krausnick and KrausnicKitchen 2011-2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dorene Krausnick and KrausnicKitchen with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Comments
2 Responses to “Homemade Marshmallows (by Alton Brown)”
  1. casey svitak says:

    You should make his candy corn. It is kind of fun. Who would have though you could make your own candy corn.

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    © Dorene Krausnick and KrausnicKitchen 2011-2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dorene Krausnick and KrausnicKitchen with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
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