Yes, you can make marshmallows at home. And they put to shame Jet-Puffed. Honestly, other than being slightly time-consuming on the cutting apart and dusting with powdered sugar, they're rather easy. And absolutely delish. BUT do not attempt this with a light-weight mixer. It will burn up the motor (RIP Sunbeam), but with a good heavy-duty mixer like a Kitchen-Aid, all is well. This recipe is a combination of Alton Brown's, Barefoot Contessa's and another I found online. It makes about 80 good sized marshmallows (which is a huge amount...but how often do you make marshmallows?).
5 Tbls. unflavored gelatin (or 5 packets)
2 cups cold water (1 cup for the gelatin and 1 cup for the sugar syrup)
3 cups granulated sugar
2 cups light corn syrup
1/2 tsp. salt
4 Tbls. vanilla extract
1 package of shaved coconut, lightly toasted and cooled
Powdered sugar & Cornstarch, for dusting
Place the gelatin into the bowl of a stand mixer along with 1 cup of the water. Have the whisk attachment standing by.
In a small saucepan combine the remaining 1 cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt. Place over medium high heat, cover and allow to cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Uncover, clip a candy thermometer onto the side of the pan and continue to cook until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F, approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Once the mixture reaches this temperature, immediately remove from the heat.
Turn the mixer on low speed and, while running, slowly pour the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin mixture. Once you have added all of the syrup, CAREFULLY increase the speed to high. Continue to whip until the mixture becomes very thick and is lukewarm, approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Add the vanilla during the last minute of whipping. While the mixture is whipping prepare the pans as follows.
Combine the confectioners' sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Lightly spray a 13 by 9-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray. Add the sugar and cornstarch mixture and move around to completely coat the bottom and sides of the pan. Return the remaining mixture to the bowl for later use.
When ready, pour the mixture into the prepared pan, using a lightly oiled spatula for spreading evenly into the pan. Dust the top with toasted coconut. Allow the marshmallows to sit uncovered for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.
Turn the marshmallows out onto a cutting board and cut into 1-inch squares using a pizza wheel or knife dusted with the confectioners' sugar mixture. Once cut, lightly dust all sides of each marshmallow with the remaining mixture, using additional if necessary. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
Casey loves marshmallows. And, he did the dishes. Isn't he cute in my apron? Love that man.