Monday, December 13, 2010

Peppermint Marshmallows

This homemade treat is a sweet gift that is delicious in hot chocolate or straight from the bag.

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
2 (1/4 ounce) envelopes unflavored gelatin
1 1/3 cups sugar
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy
1/8 teaspoon salt
Optional: red food coloring
Into a small bowl, sift together the confectioners sugar and the cornstarch; line a 13X9 inch baking pan with non stick foil and spray foil with non stick cooking spray; sift 2 tablespoons of the sugar/cornstarch mixture into the pan, tilting to coat the pan; set the rest of the mixture aside for later. Then, place 2/3 cup water in a large bowl; sprinkle with gelatin; let soften for five minutes. 

In a medium heavy bottomed saucepan, heat sugar, corn syrup, candy pieces and salt over medium heat until sugar and candy pieces are dissolved, stirring occasionally; slowly mix into bowl with gelatin.  Beat gelatin/sugar mixture on high speed with electric beater until light and fluffy, about 15 minutes (a freestanding mixer comes in handy). Spread into prepared pan and smooth top.
Optional:  Working quickly, drop dots of red food coloring across surface of marshmallow. Using a toothpick, swirl food coloring into marshmallow to create a marbleized effect.
Dust with 2 tablespoons of the reserved sugar/cornstarch mixture and let set at room temperature for  3 hours.
Lift marshmallow block from pan using foil; with a wet knife, cut into six squares.

Spread remaining sugar/cornstarch mixture onto a baking sheet; invert marshmallow blocks onto baking sheet and cut each square into 9 smaller squares.

Toss marshmallows in sugar/cornstarch mixture and set on a pan to set for an additional hour; store loosely covered at room temperature.

 Package them in clear cellophane bags, tie with a ribbon and give them along with a jar of hot chocolate mix and mug. 

Alternative: Cut with small cookie cutters dipped in water and then coat sides with the sugar/cornstarch mixture. 

Picture from Martha Stewart

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