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Sunday, July 5, 2015

Fluffy lemon marshmallows

I had wanted to make marshmallows for a while, with it being the summer and therefore s'mores season, but I just hasn't had the time.  I had thought about making key lime marshmallows (how awesome do those sound?!) -- and I even bought the key limes, but then their ripeness came and went -- but when those didn't happen, I couldn't get a bright citrusy marshmallow out of my head.  (Don't worry - I thought about my previous s'mores statement, and I even came up with an idea for a tasty one with a lemon marshmallow!)

Being that it was July 4th weekend, I wanted to make something red, white, and blue or with fresh strawberries, but those ideas were fleeting, and I ended up coming back to these fluffy citrusy pillows of deliciousness.  

While I was waiting for the marshmallows to set up, I licked the spatula...and the bowl...and the whisk...because they are that good!  Perfectly tangy and sweet and fluffy and, well, just YUM!  And despite being on a "healthy eating" kick (which I hope turns from a "kick" into a "lifestyle"), I have been snacking on these bad boys for the past few days.  That is despite my willpower to turn down ice cream (NYC is HOT right now) and other treats, I can't stay away from these marshmallows!

Fluffy Lemon Marshmallows
Recipe very loosely adapted from here.


1/2 cup water
1/2 cup freshly squeeze lemon juice (I had just under a half cup and added a little water to make it a full cup....they are really really lemony!  If you want a more muted lemon flavor, I'd go with 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice)
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 Tbsp fresh lemon zest (I cut my lemon zest into smaller pieces since it always seems to get caught in the whisk attachment of my Kitchen Aid....and it still did :-(  Less so, but there were still some clumps stuck on the whisk when I removed it from the bowl)

Yellow food coloring, a few drops, if desired (I left this out and had deliciously lemony marshmallows that were white....which I am (a) OK with and (b) intended for...but if you want your lemon marshmallows to look a little lemony yellow, then add a drop or two of yellow food coloring at a time until you reach your desired level of yellowness)

Marshmallow coating:

1.5 cups confectioners sugar
1 cup corn starch


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 in 1/2 cup lemon juice and sprinkle the gelatin over.
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.
Add the lemon zest.
Stop stirring and once mixture comes to a rolling boil, continue boiling for 1 minute.
Remove from the heat. (Recommendation: the original recipe said that they like to carefully pour mixture into a 2-cup glass measuring cup, to make it easier to pour into mixer.  I did this and found it extremely helpful!).
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.
If you have a smaller mixer bowl, you may need to scrape down the sides of the bowl frequently to avoid the batter overflowing as it grows.
Add the yellow food coloring now, if using.

Place the mixture into 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 manipulate as it begins to set.

Spray a sheet of plastic wrap liberally with cooking spray and lay it across the top of the marshmallow, sprayed side down.
Using you fingers, 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.

Make the marshmallow coating.
Mix the confectioner's sugar and corn starch together 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 or use a round cookie cutter to cut shapes.
Roll each of the freshly cut marshmallow squares in the powder mixture.
Put them on a baking sheet to dry slightly before packaging them up (about 30 – 45 minutes).