The recipe for the week was marshmallows. I made them several years ago, and at that time I was surprised at how easy they were to make and how well they turned out. This time, things didn’t go as smoothly.
Sunday, the day that I had set aside to make the recipe, was chilly and rainy in Seattle – quite a contrast to Saturday’s warm, sunny weather. (We do get the odd tease of summer weather in April here in the Pacific Northwest.) So much for keeping the marshmallows cool AND dry. It’s amazing that they turned out as well as they did, actually. I was a bit distracted as we’re trying to fix up our basement, and several times I was called to run downstairs to hold a piece of plywood that Mark was sawing, or drill screws into a piece of pegboard. I ended up overbeating the egg whites, but I went ahead and beat the sugar syrup and gelatin into them and they looked fine. When I laid the mixture out on the baking tray, though, I had a bit of trouble smoothing it and keeping it level to one inch. The result was less-than-lovely, unevenly sized marshmallows. Unlike the beautiful ones pictured in Dorie’s book, mine were brutti ma buoni – ugly but good.
The best part was playing around with different coatings for the plain vanilla marshmallows. I decided to divide the batch of cut marshmallows into thirds, with a different coating for each. I toasted some coconut for one.
I grated nutmeg into some powdered sugar for another.
I had some dark cocoa I thought would make a nice contrast with the white marshmallows, so I mixed some of that with some cinnamon and espresso powder, like one of Dorie’s “playing around” flavorings.
Mark emerged from the basement to ohh and ahh and gobble a coconut-coated marshmallow. I took the rest to work yesterday and they were a big hit. People were amazed by the seeming alchemy of it. “You made marshmallows!?!”
I have to miss next week’s carrot cake recipe, but I’m looking forward to whatever comes after that.