Thursday, January 7, 2010

Yes Virginia, there is a CORN FREE MARSHMALLOW!

And it ROCKS!  Just about the best marshmallow you've ever had.  My eldest daughter begged and begged for a marshmallow she could eat and I spent months searching the internet for a marshmallow recipe that didn't use corn syrup OR egg whites.  I don't remember exactly how I stumbled across the reference to this wonderful cookbook:  Marshmallows: Homemade Gourmet Treats by Eileen Talanian, but it is the most awesome cookbook I have owned in a very long time.  Go buy a copy.  Seriously.  It's available on amazon in a beautiful hardcover.  Check out the table of contents and index for all the amazing recipe listings.  It ranges from the basic vanilla to the exotic long pepper, lime cilantro and honey lavender flavors.  It not only contains dozens and dozens of recipes for both marshmallows and marshmallow fluff (contains egg whites), but also fabulous desserts that use them as well.  For instance, the cover picture.  It is beautifully published, formatted and photographed.  It would make a great coffee table book even if you don't try the recipes.  But you should.  The marshmallows are so fabulous and there is no drizzling hot syrup into the gelatin either.  Now, you can make her recipes with light corn syrup, but I take the time to make the marshmallow syrup because they taste cleaner and better and the whole point for me was to avoid the corn. 

If you would like to see the process, check out the book's website: and check out the different sections to view step by step pictures.  Edit: The website doesn't seem to be supported for pictures anymore, but the book does have fabulous pictures and pretty clear instructions.  The first time I made them they were fabulous.  Everyone who tried them thought they were great and just like a regular marshmallow, only tastier.  The next time, I tried the cinnamon mocha marshmallow recipe.  WOW.  The girls went crazy over them and the batter was positively sinful.

Texturally, they are really quite like storebought, only softer, fluffier and less gummy.

The cinnamon mocha batter.  Looks like chocolate buttercream doesn't it?  Doesn't even compare, this stuff was so amazingly good.

Finished product - I used cinnamon powdered sugar (with tapioca starch, not corn) for my coating.  I suppose I could have used straight cocoa for a less speckled look, but these were seriously tasty this way.

If you can have a candy thermometer and a stand mixer, marshmallows are well within your reach. 

By the way, I tried one recipe with egg whites and did not like at all how it turned out.  Too much like meringue and not enough like marshmallow.  However I did try someone else's egg white-using marshmallows over the holidays that were much better and pretty much proper marshmallow texture.  So maybe the recipe made the difference there.  I still prefer this book and egg white free marshmallows.

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