I originally made this recipe last fall and loved it so much it became part of my collection:
Homemade marshmallows are something to make at least once in your life. They taste nothing like the stale dry counterparts you find in bags at the store. These are good candy, meant to be enjoyed! Fair warning: it isn’t a recipe for those who don’t like to cook and while fairly simple, it can be intimidating to kitchen newbies as it does require a couple pieces of kitchen equipment.
The recipe here has 5 ingredients and nothing fake added in. For those who cannot have artificial dyes this is almost the only way to have marshmallows. To give you an idea of what commercial marshmallows contain, here is the ingredient list for a certain brand name company:
“CORN SYRUP, SUGAR, DEXTROSE, MODIFIED CORN STARCH, WATER, GELATIN, TETRASODIUM PYROPHOSPHATE (WHIPPING AID), ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, ARTIFICIAL COLOR (BLUE 1)”.
I came across the recipe on another blog, Boiled Parsnip. The recipe seemed like fun so I decided to give it a try. I did a couple minor changes to the recipe to make it more user friendly.
You will notice this is a more unusual recipe in that there is no corn syrup in it. While you can now find organic corn syrup it isn’t easy to find it. Commercial corn syrup is almost always a blend of regular corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup. And no thanks to that!
Maple Syrup Marshmallows
3 Tbsp gelatin (3 packets)
1/2 cup water
2 cups maple syrup
1/4 tsp cream of tartar (This helps the “fluff”, find in the spice section)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Powdered sugar for coating
Pour gelatin and water into a stand mixer bowl. Make sure you have the whisk attachment on. Let the mixture sit while you heat up the maple syrup in a large saucepan with a heavy bottom. Cook the maple syrup and cream of tartar to hard-ball stage or 250* degrees. You will need a quality candy thermometer either analog or digital that clips onto the pan. I brought my syrup to this temperature over med high heat. If you haven’t made candy before this can be a tad scary as the syrup is boiling. Make sure you have no kids, pets or hands falling into the syrup. 250* is VERY hot!
With oven mitts get your pan over to stand mixer. Pour it slowly into the gelatin while the mixer is running on low. Add the salt and vanilla. Turn it up to high and ignore it for a couple minutes. When it’s very fluffy and seems to be done expanding pour the mixture into a lightly buttered 9″x13″ pan. You will know when it is ready, it looks like marshmallow fluff. Use a silicone spatula to spread it evenly. Eat the left over marshmallow fluff off the whisk.
Let it set for 2-3 hours and then cut into squares. This can be tricky as it will be a bit sticky. You may want to lightly butter your knife. In a large bowl toss the cut marshmallows in powdered sugar. This will allow you to store them without sticking. You can also cut out shapes with deep cookie cutters dipped in the sugar.
These can be used in recipes calling for marshmallows or for simply nibbling away. They melt in your mouth as you eat them! They do have a very strong flavor – so if you love maple syrup you will love them. If not? Then bland corn syrup is your friend 😉 On a side note, the marshmallows are a pale khaki color. This is normal due to the syrup. That blue dye in the commercial variety? It is there to make the white whiter!
Substitute other flavors for the vanilla. Mint works well and you can add in tiny bits of shattered peppermint candy cane near the end of the whipping period! Consider dipping the marshmallows in tempered melted chocolate as well…..