The snow has started falling up here in Newcastle and that means one thing, steaming mugs of cocoa topped off with delicious homemade marshmallows. Homemade marshmallows really are leagues apart from their supermarket counterparts, the texture and delicate flavour are so perfect and fluffy you could be chewing on a peppermint cloud. The method may seem a little scary, boiling sugar is never something that should be taken lightly, but as long as you're careful it really couldn't be any simpler.
I've added peppermint extract to these marshmallows but feel free to flavour them however you wish. Vanilla, rose or even coffee would work wonders, just change the colours to match your tastes.
(Adapted from Martha Stewart)
Vegetable-oil cooking spray
450g cups sugar
1 tablespoon golden syrup
4 packages gelatin
3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 large egg whites
2 teaspoons red food coloring
Coat an 8-inch square pan with cooking spray; line bottom with parchment paper. Coat the parchment with cooking spray, and set pan aside. Put sugar, golden syrup, and 175ml water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Stop stirring; let mixture come to a boil. Raise heat to medium-high; cook until mixture registers 260 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over 175ml cup water in a heatproof bowl; let stand 5 minutes to soften. Set the bowl with the gelatin mixture over a pan of simmering water; whisk constantly until gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat, and stir in extract; set aside.
Beat egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment until stiff peaks form. Whisk gelatin mixture into sugar mixture; with mixer running, gradually add to egg whites. Mix on high speed until very thick, 12 to 15 minutes.
Pour mixture into lined pan. 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. Let marshmallow stand, uncovered, at room temperature until firm, at least 3 hours or overnight. Cut into squares.