Monday, December 2, 2013

Cherry-Lemonade Marshmallows

Sometimes it's fun to give and receive handmade gifts and nothing is more fun to make and give than marshmallows! I've made a long list of different varieties here at WITK, including peppermint, blueberry and birthday cake. These marshmallows are a little different because they contain no corn syrup!


That's right, these marshmallows are actually made using chemistry! The main ingredients for these fluffy pillows are sugar, water and cream of tartar.  Cream of tartar is actually the mild acid - potassium bitartrate. By adding this acid to the sugar solution and introducing heat, the cream of tartar actually catalyzes the breakdown of the sugar (sucrose) molecules into its components - glucose and fructose.  Do you know what is in corn syrup? It's glucose and fructose! We just made our own corn syrup, in situ! (thought I would throw in a little more sciencey verbage for you there.)


So if you aren't a fan of using corn syrup, you should give this recipe a try! The combination of cherry and lemon makes these more of a summer flavor than a winter one, but who doesn't want to be reminded of those warmer days? Whip up a huge batch of these and hand them out to your friends this holiday season! You can even use organically grown sugar and organic cream of tartar (I'm thinking it's collected from organically grown grapes?) and make organic marshmallows!

One Year Ago: Apricot-garlic Pork Tenderloin and Potatoes and Fennel
Two Years Ago: Coconut Brownies
Three Years Ago: Salted Caramel & Chocolate Crostata

Cherry-Lemonade Marshmallows
Adapted from Sweet Confections

These marshmallows came out a little airier and stickier than my usual recipe. This makes a lot of marshmallow, the recipe is easily halved if you don't want two full pans of marshmallows!

For the Lemon Layer
1/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 tablespoons powdered gelatin
1 cup water
3 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon lemon zest

For the Cherry Layer
3/4 cup pureed cherries
3 tablespoons powdered gelatin
1 cup water
3 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

For the marshmallow coating
2 cups cornstarch
1 cup powdered sugar

Lightly coat two 9x13-inch pans with cooking spray. Gently wipe out the excess with a paper towel.

In a small bowl, whisk together cold water, lemon juice and powdered gelatin. Set next to the stove and allow to bloom.  In a 4-quart pot, combine water, sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Clip on candy thermometer and cook until sugar dissolves and temperature reaches 250ºF.  Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes.  Add bloomed gelatin and whisk until dissolved.

Pour marshmallow syrup into the bowl of your stand mixer.  Whip with the whisk attachment on high for about 10 minutes.  Add lemon zest and whip for another minute, or until batter is shiny, fluffy and almost completely cool.  Pour into the prepared pans, half in each pan.

Clean out all your equipment and make cherry marshmallow layer!

In a small bowl, whisk together pureed cherries and powdered gelatin. Set next to the stove and allow gelatin to bloom.  In a 4-quart pot, combine water, sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat and clip on your candy thermometer. Boil until the sugar dissolves and the temperature reaches 250ºF.  Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes.  Add gelatin and whisk until dissolved.

Pour marshmallow syrup into the bowl of your stand mixer and whip on high for 10-12 minutes, until shiny, fluffy and almost cooled.  Add some red food coloring if you want a darker color. Pour cherry marshmallow batter on top of the lemon layer.  Let marshmallow sit for 4 hours to solidify.

Mix Cornstarch and powdered sugar and place in a large bowl.  Set a mesh sieve over a bowl and get a storage container ready.  Dust your countertop with some of the cornstarch mixture and remove the marshmallow slab from the pan. Dust the top and sides with the cornstarch mixture. Using either a pizza cutter or a chefs knife, cut marshmallow into 1-inch strips. Cut the strips into 1-inch cubes.  Toss the cubes into the bowl of cornstarch and powdered sugar.  Toss to coat.  Transfer marshmallows to the mesh sieve and shake off excess powder.  Transfer to the storage container.

Marshmallows will keep for 2 weeks in an air-tight container.
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