I used to believe marshmallows were for kids, camping and jello salads. This summer when I made marshmallows at home, I rediscovered these sweet treats and learned about six of their sensational secrets.
1. Marshmallows get their name from an herb called the Marsh Mallow. The root of this plant contains a jelly-like substance used by ancient Egyptians for both medicine and candy.
2. Marshmallows are easy to make at home. They rely on corn syrup and sugar for sweetness, a little bit of gelatin to give them their sponge-like texture, water, and flavoring.
3. All these ingredients are whipped together for about 10 minutes. The whipping adds air to the confection to yield a light pillow-like quality.
4. August 10th is national S’mores Day. This campfire delicacy, consisting of a gooey marshmallow sandwiched between two graham crackers along with a square of chocolate candy, was introduced by the Girl Scouts in their 1927 Handbook.
5. Marshmallows can be flavored with vanilla, chocolate, fruit, peppermint or even espresso.
6. You can make your marshmallows in whatever color, size of shape you want. Try flavoring them with a tiny amount of lavender, and adding a drop of lavender food coloring. Serve in s’mores and you will earn a reputation as a gourmet cook!
And wait, there’s more: Marshmallows can be frozen. When you are ready to use them, just thaw. Use them in s’mores, a garnish for hot chocolate or add them on skewers with fresh fruit and pieces of pound cake.
How do like to serve marshmallows? What flavor do you like best?