I Heart Marshmallows

I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but Snowmageddon is back. For the record, I’ve lived through the Ice Storm of ‘98 in Montreal so I don’t like to give in to mass panic over the weather in Virginia. Parts of Montreal were out of power for weeks, classes were canceled (the only time I can ever remember that happening) but school stayed open for kids who didn’t have power at home, and when my parents ran out of ways to entertain my brothers and I, they took the car battery inside and plugged the tv into it so we could watch movies on VHS. Pretty genius right?

I’ve yet to come across a storm that disrupts my life quite as much as the Ice Storm of ‘98 did. If Twitter (and every news channel out there) is to be believed however, I’m not leaving the apartment this weekend. I love a snow day as much as the next gal but I’m hoping the weather channel is just being dramatic because I’ve got a needlepoint class tomorrow I’ve really been looking forward to. Dear snow, please don’t disrupt my weekend plans.

In the meantime, I’ve stocked up on important supplies....just in case I get snowed in and needed to survive without power, water or worse, internet, for a few days. The horror.

In addition to the essentials, I got loads of hot chocolate mix. It’s wrong to enjoy hot chocolate mix without marshmallows so in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I made heart-shaped homemade marshmallows to put in my hot chocolate this weekend!

While not complicated, making marshmallows requires a candy thermometer and a stand mixer. I would normally say that you could get by with just a handheld mixer but this recipe involves pouring really hot sugar into the bowl to be mixed. You risk getting burnt if you try to use a handheld mixer so do yourself a favor and use a stand mixer!

Variations with sprinkles:

  • If you want to make these even more festive, add red and white sprinkles to the marshmallow batter while it is cooling in the baking dish. The top of it will get hard over time so add them early on in the process.
  • Once your marshmallows are done, dip one side of the in melted white chocolate and sprinkle that in red sprinkles
  • Substitute sprinkles for red cinnamon sugar

Ingredients (recipe from Sally’s Candy Addiction)

  • ⅓ Cup (40g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3x ¼ ounce (7g each) packages unflavored gelatin
  • 1 Cup (240ml) cold water
  • 1 Cup (240g) light corn syrup
  • 1 ½ Cup (300g) sugar
  • ¼ Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Recipe

  • Cover an 8x8 glass baking pan with nonstick cooking spray
  • In a small bowl, sift together confectioners’ sugar and cornstarch, sprinkle some of mixture into prepared pan to cover the bottom, set remainder aside for later
  • Combine gelatin and ½ cup (120ml) of the cold water in the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, whisk on low for about a minute and then let sit while you work on steps below
  • In a large heavy duty saucepan, combine remaining water, corn syrup, sugar and salt, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until sugar is fully dissolved
  • Once sugar is dissolved, attach a candy thermometer to the saucepan and heat without stirring until it reached 240 degrees fahrenheit
  • Remove saucepan from heat and after setting the stand mixer to low, carefully pour sugar into it
  • Gradually increase speed to high over the next minute and beat on high for about 11 minutes until marshmallow batter is shiny and white, mixing in vanilla extract during the last minute of the process
  • Pour marshmallow batter into prepared pan and let set for 6 hours at room temperature
  • Once marshmallow block has set (you can push on it and feel it is solid), carefully pull marshmallow away from sides of the pan
  • Lay a piece of parchment paper on countertop surface (larger than the size of the marshmallow block) and sprinkle with sugar and cornstarch mixture
  • Flip pan upside down and use your fingers to help marshmallow block out of the pan and onto the parchment paper
  • Cover either a knife (if you want to make square marshmallows) or a heart cookie cutter with sugar and cornstarch mixture and cut marshmallow block to desired shape
  • Roll edges of marshmallows in sugar and cornstarch mixture to make less sticky
  • Store in an airtight container between pieces of parchment paper at room temperature until ready to enjoy