Sunday, January 9, 2011

PBG Recipe: Marshmallows (and PBG Redesign)

You may have noticed that I have been making some design changes to the site.  I wanted to "perk" it up a little.  What do you think?

This weekend has been pretty good.  I went on a road trip/shopping trip to Ikea with my friend Claudia.  She lives 3 hours away so we don't get to see each other very often.  Although, she is moving an hour and a half closer very soon.  That makes me very happy.  We did lots of chatting and a little bit of shopping.  I purchased a bunch of kitchen gadgets including some loaf pans, cupcake cups, a zester, melon baller, corer, some cookie cutters and a some very tiny bowls I thought I plan to use for recipe prep.  All in all it was a good day.

Today I did some major cleaning on the upper level and main floor of the house.  Sweep, mop, wipe.  I also ventured to make home made marshmallows.  It was a success.  Candy can be tricky so I am just glad this wasn't a gooey disaster.  The resulting treats were soft and sweet with just a hint of vanilla.  They would be perfect for s'mores or hot chocolate.

Nonstick cooking spray
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1 cup water
3 packages unflavoured gelatin
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 egg whites, room temperature
1 vanilla bean

  • Spray the bottom and interior sides of a 9x13-inch metal baking pan with cooking spray. (my 9x13 pan was dirty so I just used two circular cake pans)
  • Sift together the cornstarch and confectioner's sugar in a small bowl, then dust an even layer of the mixture over the prepared pans, making sure to coat thoroughly. Set aside. Reserve the rest of the cornstarch and confectioner's sugar.
  • In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/2 cup of the water and allow to sit until softened and all the water is absorbed.
  • In a medium sized sauce pan combine the 1/2 cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt.
  • Stir using a wooden spoon, over medium low heat, until the sugar has dissolved, around 3-4 minutes. Bring the mixture to the boil over medium heat and cook for around 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat and add the gelatin. Stir until dissolved.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
  • On medium speed, pour a thin, steady stream of the hot sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the egg whites.
  • Slowly increase the speed to high and beat until the batter has nearly tripled in volume and has cooled to room temperature, around 12-15 minutes.
  • Split vanilla beans down the middle and scrape out the flavourful seeds.  Add the vanilla to the mixer and beat for about a minute more.
  • Pour the marshmallow into the prepared pans, using an oiled spatula to smush into corners and smooth the top.
  • Sift over another generous layer of the reserved cornstarch and confectioner's sugar mixture.
  • Let stand until set, at room temperature and uncovered, around 3 hours.
  • Onto a large board, sift some more of the cornstarch and confectioner's sugar. Run a thin knife around the edge of the marshmallows to release from the pan then invert onto the dusted work surface.
  • Use an oiled knife or cutter to divide into your desired shapes. Coat these with a sifting of the last of the cornstarch and confectioner's sugar to keep them separate.
  • Store in an airtight container with parchment paper between layers, for up to one week.

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