What is in Marshmallows anyway?

Marshmallows--those little pillows that brown up so well on the end of a stick, that melt into yumminess when topping hot cocoa, that turn rice krispies into something delicious.

I'd never really thought of making marshmallows from scratch, until I came across this recipe on My Baking Addiction and realized I had all but one ingredient! (Gelatin, obvi). It was time to make something. 

This was one of the simplest recipes I've ever made! And, honestly, so so so worth it. These marshmallows are a distant cousin from the ones in the plastic bag. They're so delicious. I was eating them straight and had to give some away because it was getting tobe a problem--they were lusciously soft, perfectly sweet, and a complete revelation. Highly recommended.

YIELD: about 30 marshmallows
PREP TIME: 25 minutes
3/4 cup water, divided
3 (.25 ounce) packages unflavored gelatin
2/3 cup light corn syrup
2 cups white sugar
1 tablespoon *vanilla extract
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

1. Line a 9x9 inch baking dish with plastic wrap and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Spray another piece of plastic wrap to cover the top, and set aside.

2. Place 1/2 cup of water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and sprinkle gelatin on top of water to soak.

3. While gelatin is soaking, combine 1/4 cup of water, corn syrup, and sugar in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat. Boil the mixture hard for 1 minute.

4. Carefully pour the hot sugar mixture into the gelatin mixture and beat on high for 12 minutes with electric mixer, until the mixture is fluffy and forms stiff peaks. Add in vanilla extract and beat until just combined.

5. Pour the marshmallow mixture into the prepared baking dish, using a greased spatula to smooth the top. Cover the candy with the piece of prepared plastic wrap, pressing it down lightly to seal the covering to the top of the candy.

6. Allow the marshmallow candy to rest for 4 hours or overnight. Mix together cornstarch and confectioner's sugar in a shallow dish. Using oiled scissors (that's what I did!) or an oiled kitchen knife, cut the marshmallow candy into strips, then into 1 inch squares. Dredge the marshmallows lightly in the cornstarch mixture and store in an airtight container. Or just put them right into some hot cocoa. :)


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