Awwww, shucks. It’s Valentine’s Day again! I know a lot of people hate this holiday, but let me tell you that I Love You. Whoever you are, I hope you tell at least one person today, “I Choo Choo Choose You,” with a picture of a train attached.
Now on to why I bought a candy thermometer: marshmallows!
I don’t really like marshmallows, but I’ve been obsessed with making them ever since I watched Martha Stewart do it. Using a powerful KitchenAid, you whip gelatin with sugar and water until it becomes a glossy, creamy, ooey gooey cloud that eventually hardens enough to slice into smaller clouds of happiness.
For Christmas, I received both a KitchenAid and a candy thermometer, so I was able to make these peppermint-scented marshmallows that I cut into heart shapes. Say it with me, “Awwww!” I wanted to dye them pink, too, but “someone” used all the red food coloring making fake blood for Halloween and then tried to tell me that yellow and blue mixed together makes red…
And here’s what I think about making your own marshmallows: it’s really pretty easy. You boil the sugar until it gets to a certain temp, then whip it in with the gelatin. Add flavorings, whip some more, pour it out, cool, slice and you’re done.
They taste so much smoother and softer than the kind at the store. For these, the peppermint was pretty strong, so leave it out if you’re not a fan. Vanilla alone is a great flavor.
I found this recipe here:
Peppermint Heart Marshmallows
- Shortening for greasing
- Powdered sugar for dusting
- 2 1/2 tbsp Knox plain gelatin (a little less than 4 packets)
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1/8 tsp red food coloring
- 1 tsp peppermint extract
1. Grease a 9X13 dish with shortening and dust with powdered sugar the same way you would flour cake pans. Set aside.
2. Whisk attachment in place, combine the gelatin and 1/2 cup cold water in the mixing bowl. This needs to sit for 15 minutes. So, while you wait…
3. In a medium-sized saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup, salt and 1/2 cup of water over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. (about a 1 minute)
4. Turn the heat up to high and stick your candy thermometer in. Heat on high until the temperature is between 242 and 248 degrees F. NO STIRRING. 10-14 minutes. When between 242 and 248, remove from heat.
5. Back to the mixer, turn speed on to low and slowly pour the sugar mixture into the gelatin mixture. Increasing the speed one setting at a time for about 10 seconds each, eventually get to the highest setting on your mixer. The mixture will triple in size and be shiny and smooth; 10-15 minutes. When it’s done, keep the speed on high and add in the vanilla and peppermint extract.
6. With a spatula, spread evenly into your prepared pan. Dust with more powdered sugar and use your fingers to spread it around, if needed. Leave uncovered for about 8-10 hours, or overnight.
7. Cover a cutting board with powdered sugar and plop out the giant marshmallow onto it. You can loosen the sides with a knife. With a small heart-shaped cookie cutter, dipped into powdered sugar every time if necessary, cut out the heart shapes. Roll the sides in the powdered sugar so there are no sticky parts left. If you just want to make square marshmallows, dip the knife in powdered sugar and cut to desirable size, again rolling the sides in powdered sugar. Store in an airtight container.
These are perfection in a mug of hot chocolate, or even in coffee!
Happy V-day, friends! xoxo