Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Marshmallow Hearts

Hello all you Valentine's out there! Hope you've all been extremely loved and blessed this Valentine's Day.   In celebration of v-day this year, I made some goodies for the youth group kids.  About once a month we have them over to our house for food, games and lots of good times.  So I made them this:

They are chocolate covered marshmallow hearts and they are delicious.  This was my first rodeo making marshmallows and if I had to sum it up in one word this would be it: sticky.  That aside, they're pretty stinking easy and delectable.  

The kids seemed to like them a lot too.  The process is pretty easy; if you've ever made divinity, marshmallows are divinity's close cousin and just as simple! Beware though, these will definitley more than satiate your sweet tooth, it might just give you a cavity - these babies are sa-weet, but worth the while! 

Chocolate Covered Marshmallows
Adapted slightly from here

powdered sugar, for coating pan
2/3 c. water, divided
3 (1/4 oz.) envelopes unflavored gelatin
1 c. granulated sugar
1 c. light corn syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
Candy melts, almond bark or your favorite chocolate chips

Lightly spray the inside of an 9'' x 13'' pan with cooking spray. Generously coat with powdered sugar and set aside.
Pour 1/3 cup of the water into the bowl of a stand mixer. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water and stir briefly to incorporate. Let stand for about 5 minutes, or until the gelatin has softened.
In a saucepan, off the heat, combine the remaining 1/3 cup of water and the granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Place the pan over medium-high heat. Clip a candy thermometer on the inside of the pan, making sure it doesn’t touch the bottom. Cook the mixture without stirring until it reaches 240°.

With your mixer on low speed, very carefully add the hot syrup to the softened gelatin. Add the vanilla and increase the speed to medium-high. The mixture will start out clear, but quickly turns very white. Beat for about 8 minutes, or until the marshmallow gets very thick and sticky, and starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl, it will look stringy.

Spread the mixture into the prepared pan using a lightly oiled spatula. With wet hands, press the batter evenly into the corners of the pan. Just keep rewetting your hands to help with the stickiness. Set aside for at least 1 hour, or until the mixture is firm and cool.

Run a wet knife around the edge of the cooled pan to loosen the marshmallow. Remove the marshmallow from the pan, onto a sheet of parchment paper.

Dip your small shaped cookie cutter (Mine was a little too large for my liking, I would suggest the smaller, the better) into a shallow bowl of water and then cut the slab of marshmallow into heart shapes.  It helps to dip the heart cutter into the water in between cuts. Repeat this process until the whole slab of marshmallow is cut.

In the top bowl of a double boiler, soften chosen method of coating (choc. chips, candy melts, etc.)  Begin stirring the chocolate until melted to a liquid consistency (if using chocolate chips, I would suggest using a touch of shortening to make it a bit smoother; just add it in the pot and melt along with the chocolate).  Dip one side of the marshmallows into the chocolate.  Lay un-dipped side back on the parchment paper until chocolate is hardened.  Repeat until entire marshmallow is covered in chocolate and serve to the ones you love!

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