Hurray! It's time for another installment of the Secret Recipe Club.
This month, I was assigned to Cupcakes with Sprinkles, a blog by Meghan, a mother of three very adorable children who always saves room for dessert. As you might guess from her blog's name, Meghan mostly blogs about sweets, though she occasionally shares a savoury dish or snack to keep things interesting.
Just browsing through the archives can be hazardous if you're trying to watch your weight. There are some seriously amazing-looking recipes in there!
After debating my options, I ended up settling on a recipe for homemade Chocolate Marshmallows that Meaghan adapted from Paula Deen. I've been meaning on trying my hand at making homemade marshmallows for ages, anyway, so it seemed as good a time as any to cross them off my bucket list.
As always, I couldn't resist fiddling with the recipe, turning the basic chocolate recipe into a mochaccino-inspired version spiked with coffee and cinnamon.
It turns out that marshmallows aren't particularly hard to make, though I did find the timing for the various components to be a little on the tricky side. (Pro tip: Go to the bathroom before you start - like with any candy-making project, once you get going, you can't take a break. Don't ask why I know this.) I'm sure it'll be much easier now that I've got the hang of it, though.
And the finished marshmallows? They're exactly as Meghan advertised - soft and fluffy and creamy, and nothing at all like a store-bought marshmallow at all (not that I've ever seen a chocolate marshmallow at the store, mind you).
As for my little tweaks, the cinnamon comes through quite clearly in the finished marshmallows, while the coffee flavour isn't really all that noticeable, though it does add a certain je-ne-sais-quoi, while the cinnamon definitely shines through. I can see these turning into a chocolate-mint marshmallow for the holidays, or going a little boozier with bourbon or rye for a more grownup twist.
In fact, my only complaint with these is that now that I know how easy it is to make marshmallows at home, I'm going to be making them all. the. freakin'. time.
And that's kind of problem, because oh my goodness are these ever addictive. The leftovers are currently sitting in an airtight box on top of my fridge, and every time I walk by, it's all I can do not to crack the box open and shove yet another marshmallow in my mouth. In fact, I totally deserve an award for not whomping down the whole batch in less than a day.
Yes, this is definitely the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
- ¼ cup icing sugar
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 3 tbsp (3 packages) unflavoured gelatin
- 1 cup cold water, divided
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 2 tsp instant espresso powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup boiling water
- 2 cups sugar
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- 2 egg whites
- 2 tsp coffee liqueur
- ¼ tsp salt
- Icing sugar, for dusting
- Sift together the icing sugar and cocoa powder into a small bowl.
- Lightly spray a 9-inch square pan with nonstick cooking spray and dust with 2 tbsp of the dusting mixture.
- In a small bowl, combine the gelatin and ½ cup of cold water, and set aside to bloom. In a second small bowl, combine cocoa, espresso powder, cinnamon and boiling water, and whisk until smooth.
- In a small saucepan set over medium-high heat, combine sugar, corn syrup, and the remaining ½ cup of cold water. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves, and then continue cooking without stirring until the mixture reaches 240F.
- Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites, coffee liqueur and salt at a high speed until stiff peaks form. Scrape into a clean bowl, then quickly wash and dry the mixer bowl and put it back on the stand mixer.
- Add the gelatin and cocoa mixtures to the stand mixer bowl, then quickly pour in the hot syrup. Beat at high speed for about 4 minutes, or until thick and tripled in volume. Gently fold in the egg whites, then spread evenly into the prepared pan. Dust with 2 tbsp of the remaining dusting mixture.
- Chill the marshmallows for at least 2 hours, or until set. Using a sharp knife dipped in icing sugar, cut the marshmallows into 2 inch squares. Toss with the remaining coating mixture to coat on all sides, then transfer to an airtight storage container until ready to eat.