There are some foods that even the
most confident and experienced cooks and bakers will shy away from making from
scratch. For me, that included marshmallows.
I mean, how DO you make
marshmallows, anyway? Sugar and fairy dust? Fluffy clouds? It all seemed a
And then I came across an actual
recipe, and lo and behold, it was not at all complicated. It didn’t even
require any fancy ingredients (no fairy dust!).
So I gave it a try. And not only
are homemade marshmallows super easy to make in your own kitchen, they are far
and away superior — both in flavor and texture — to anything you get out of a
Even better? When you make them
yourself you can customize. Flavors,
colors, mix-ins — the sky’s the limit! And talk about bragging rights: As you
put out a tray of graham crackers and chocolate bars, and casually mention
that those marshmallows? Yeah, you made them yourself.
While you can’t go wrong with
classic vanilla, I love to make marshmallows inspired by some of my other
Like these Root Beer Float
These two-toned beauties have a
rich root beer base, topped by a double-vanilla layer that evokes the classic soda fountain treat.
You will need a stand mixer and a
thermometer, but other than that just a few simple tools and ingredients will
get you from start to finish easily.
And the cherry? Totally optional.
Root Beer Float Marshmallows
MealSnack, Candy, Dessert
3 packages (1/4 ounce each) unflavored gelatin
1 cup cold water, divided
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste (or one vanilla bean, halved and scraped)
1 tablespoon root beer concentrate (available on-line or at some specialty food shops)
brown gel food coloring (optional, if a darker brown hue is desired for the root beer layer)
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
1. Grease an 8” x 8” baking pan –
line the bottom with parchment paper and grease again.
2. Place ½ cup cold water in the bowl
of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Sprinkle the gelatin over
the water and set aside.
3. Combine the remaining ½ cup water,
sugar, corn syrup and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat,
stirring till sugar is dissolved. Once mixture is boiling, attach a thermometer
and boil till a temperature of 240 degrees is reached. Remove pan from heat and—with mixer running at low speed—slowly pour the hot syrup into the bowl.
Increase speed to high and beat for 5 minutes. With mixer still running, add the
vanilla extract and beat till blended.
4. Transfer half the marshmallow to a
medium bowl and quickly stir in the vanilla bean paste. Add the root beer
concentrate and food coloring (if using) to the remaining mixture and beat till
5. Scrape the root beer layer into
your prepared pan and use a small angled spatula (or clean, slightly damp
fingers) to spread evenly. Top with the vanilla layer and spread evenly. Let
6. Sift the confectioner’s sugar and
7. Spread some of the
sugar/cornstarch mixture onto a cutting board. Use a small knife to loosen the
marshmallow around the edges of the pan and invert onto the board. Using a
large greased knife, cut marshmallow into desired squares, and dip the cut
sides into the sugar/cornstarch mixture.