I have read marshmallow recipes for many years but never tried any, although I always was rather curious about what they'd be like. I am not very fond of marshmallows, as a matter of fact, and my curiosity was never great enough to move me to experiment.
Rose had a friend from Chicago visit last weekend, however, and tried out this recipe from the current Cooking Light. Other than mentioning that sampling cocktails before working with boiling sugar syrup seemed an unnecessary risk (one they took seriously enough to postpone cocktails, by the way), I didn't participate at all.
As we have come to expect from Cooking Light, Rose said the recipe worked exactly as written and was very easy. Everyone loved the soft texture and slight chocolate flavor. I did sample one and as marshmallows go it was good enough.
Next time Rose may try more cocoa powder for a deeper chocolate flavor. It also seems to me that a mint version would be good, perhaps with a touch of green or pink food coloring.
For a more pronounced chocolate flavor, increase the cocoa powder in marshmallows.
1 cup water, divided
3 (1/4-ounce) packages unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup light-colored corn syrup
Dash of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sifted unsweetened cocoa
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1. Pour 1/2 cup water into a small microwave-safe bowl, and sprinkle with gelatin.
2. Combine remaining 1/2 cup water, sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a medium heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer registers 250°. Pour sugar mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer; let stand until a candy thermometer registers 210°.
3. Microwave gelatin mixture at HIGH for 20 seconds or until gelatin melts, stirring after 10 seconds. With mixer on low speed, beat sugar mixture using a whip attachment; gradually pour gelatin mixture in a thin stream into sugar mixture. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Increase speed to high; whip mixture at high speed until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Reduce mixer to medium speed, and gradually add 1/4 cup cocoa; beat until combined. Using a spatula coated with cooking spray, scrape mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray; smooth top. Let stand 2 hours.
4. Sift together powdered sugar, cornstarch, and 2 teaspoons cocoa into a jelly-roll pan. Using an offset spatula coated with cooking spray, remove marshmallow from pan; place in sugar mixture. Using scissors well coated with powdered sugar mixture, cut marshmallows into 78 (1-inch) squares. Dust with powdered sugar mixture; shake to remove excess sugar mixture.
5. Arrange marshmallows on a cooling rack placed on a rimmed baking sheet. Place bittersweet chocolate in a small microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH for 1 minute or until melted, stirring every 20 seconds until smooth. Drizzle melted chocolate over marshmallows; let stand until chocolate is set.