Sunday, August 23, 2015

Cherry Marshamallows

This is the sort of thing that happens when I get bored:

The pink mess in the bowl is a previous batch that I left too close to a hot oven, and melted into a gooey pile.  Jac suggests making Rice Krispy treats with it.  I'll probably do that.

The plate on the right has the finished marshmallows from the second batch.  They are dusted in powdered sugar to keep them from sticking together.  They are actually purple, as can be seen on the exposed half-marshmallow.  These are awesome in hot chocolate or s'mores.

The plate on the left has the Frankensteinian remnants, and a few salvaged pieces from the first batch, dipped in chocolate.

The reason the first batch is pink, and the second purple is a change in the recipe. The original recipe called for cherry extract and a few drops of red food coloring.  I used the last of my cherry extract making it.  When I decided to make another batch, I went to the store to get more, but there wasn't any.  So I got cherry juice and substituted it for the water in the original.  I wasn't sure it would work, but I'm pretty happy with the results.  Next time I'll add some extract, too, though.  The cherry flavor is pretty subtle with just the juice.

So here's my (revised) recipe for Cherry Marshmallows.

   Electric mixer
   Rubber scraper
   Heavy-bottomed 2-qt saucepan
   Candy thermometer
   Medium mixing bowl (I prefer one with straight sides)
   Small microwave-safe bowl
   Baking dish (I used an 11"x7" brownie pan)
   Cling wrap
   Chef's knife

   2 lg. egg whites, at room temperature
   1 c. cherry juice (I used black-cherry juice, I think that's why they're purple)
   3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
   2 c. granulated sugar
   1/2 c. light corn syrup
   1/4 t. salt
   1 t. cherry extract (or more for a stronger flavor)
   powdered sugar
   non-stick spray

   Line the baking dish with cling wrap and spray with non-stick spray.
   Mix gelatin and 1/2 c cherry juice in microwave safe bowl and set aside.
   Put egg whites in mixing bowl and set aside.
   Mix remaining 1/2 c juice, granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt in saucepan.
   Heat on med-high.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.  Insert thermometer.
   Heat to 260°F.  Note - when it starts to boil, it will make a mess if the saucepan is
   too small.
   Watch the thermometer.  When the sugar mixture gets to about 240°F, start 
   beating the egg whites.
   They should form stiff peaks about the time the sugar gets to 260°.
   Microwave gelatin on high for 20 seconds.  Stir to fully liquefy.
   Whisk gelatin into sugar mixture.  Note - this will cause a lot of steam.  Be careful.
   Slowly pour sugar/gelatin mixture into egg whites while beating on low.  Not too
   slowly, if the sugar cools it will harden.
   Add cherry extract and gradually increase speed to med-high.
   Beat until very thick and glossy, 8 to 10 minutes.
   Pour into prepared dish.  Let sit at least 8 hours to allow gelatin to set.
   Dust (liberally) a cutting board with powdered sugar.  Flip marshmallow onto
   board and remove pan and cling wrap.  Dust marshmallow with powdered sugar.
   Cut into strips (then cubes) with chef's knife.  Dust knife with powdered sugar as it
   gets sticky. And it will.  
   Dust cubes with powdered sugar, then brush off excess.