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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Pumpkin spice marshmallows

OK, I'm going to stop right now -- before I even get started -- and toot my own horn for just a second.  I know, I know, it's something I rarely (if ever) do.  But I had this idea for a delicious holiday marshmallow and I came up with a recipe and I just made them and they're awesome (yes, that was a run-on sentence, and yes, I'm sure my 3rd grade teacher would reprimand me for it, but it's just my overexcited way of "saying" it to you).

Back to the marshmallows.  I wanted to make a festive flavored marshmallow for the holiday season.  Pumpkin is, in my opinion, synonymous to everyone with Thanksgiving.  These pack a mild hint of pumpkininess with the perfect blend of spices -- hint of pumpkin pie flavor without being overpowering!  (I will spare you my normal diatribe about how I hate pumpkin and pumpkin pie spices because frankly it just works so darn well in these!)

And if you are a fan of the seasonal pumpkin spice latte from my favorite coffee chain, I suggest you try these in a cup of coffee and let me know how it tastes (I have yet to try this, I'm just saying I think it'll be good)...

So, let me just cut to the chase and share with recipe with you:

(FYI, I always have issues with cutting my marshmallows, since I end up with 20-25 super huge marshmallows.  Somehow this time I managed to do it just right....they're the perfect size!  And, I got 42 marshmallows!)

Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows


For the marshmallows

1/2 cup water, plus more if needed (I used 1 Tbsp)
1/2 cup canned PURE pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
3 Tbsp. + 1 1/2 tsp. unflavored powdered gelatin (3 envelopes – envelope is 1/4 oz. each, for 3/4 oz. total)
2 cups granulated white sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp. fine salt
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves (more to your taste, I'm personally not a huge fan)

For the coating

3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup corn starch
1 tsp ground cinnamon


Spray a 9x9 or 7x11 inch baking pan and line with parchment paper (Recommendation: cut to fit flat on the bottom, with the edges of the paper over-hanging the sides. The ends are fine just sprayed.)

In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, pour the 1/2 cup of pumpkin and 1 Tbsp of water (add more if you need).
Mix a few times to allow them to mix.
Sprinkle the gelatin over the pumpkin and water mixture.
Let stand.

In a medium saucepan over high heat, stir together the sugar, corn syrup, salt and the 1/2 cup of water.
Stir until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to boil.
Stop stirring and once mixture comes to a rolling boil, continue boiling for 1 minute.
Remove from the heat.
Pour the mixture into a 2-cup glass measuring cup, to make it easier to pour into the mixer.  *The mixture is very, very, very hot.  Be extremely careful!*

Turn the mixer to low and mix the gelatin a bit to loosen.
Very slowly and carefully add the hot sugar mixture by pouring it gently down the side of the bowl.
Continue to mix on low until all the sugar mixture is added.

Turn the mixer to high and whip the mixture for 10 to 12 minutes until the marshmallow batter almost triples in size and becomes very thick and opaque.

While the mixer is going, mix the spices and vanilla in a small bowl into a paste.
Stop the mixer, add the vanilla and spice mixture, and then whip briefly to combine.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking pan (a silicone bowl scraper works like a charm for this) and use a spatula or bench scraper to spread the marshmallow evenly in the pan, pushing it down into the corners.
Work quickly, as the marshmallow becomes more difficult to work with as it begins to set.

Spray a sheet of plastic wrap really well with cooking spray and lay it across the top of the marshmallow, sprayed side down.
Smooth the plastic wrap on top of the marshmallows a bit to seal it smoothly and tightly against the mixture.

Leave the marshmallow to set at room temperature for at least 3 hours or, even better, overnight.
The marshmallow will be too sticky and soft to cut if you try too soon.

Meanwhile, mix the coating ingredients in a bowl.

When marshmallows are ready, grab the edges of the parchment and lift the marshmallows from the pan.
Remove the plastic wrap from the top and fold down the parchment on the sides.
Using a pizza cutter or a large knife, cut the slab into 1x1 inch squares.
Roll each of the freshly cut marshmallow squares in the coating mixture.
Put them on a baking sheet to dry slightly before packaging them up (about 30 – 45 minutes).

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