This post is titled Independence Day Marshmallows, but this is also great for Midsummer, 17Mai, Bastille Day or a Captain America viewing party. If we’re being honest, I’d go for the latter.
Red, white and blue: the color of a boat load of nation flags, but today we’re talking about America’s red, white and blue. It’s almost the fourth and that means everything is red, white and blue and fireworks are on sale and management from your apartment lets you know that if you try some fireworks shit on their property you will be evicted, or is that just my complex?
I figured I’d do a Fourth of July post even though if we’re being honest my family doesn’t celebrate it, like a lot of America holidays. Most of my family consists of immigrants so we’re not too studious in the workings of certain holidays. When I was a kid we’d do something America holiday centric every once in a while, but still it had that expat feel. I personally loved it and plan on continuing the tradition to which ever country I end up moving to.
Adjustments: if you’re not into strawberries then using freeze dried raspberries are a can do as well and if you’re not too keen on blueberries, then freeze dried blackberries are a great substitution. I also would say if you’re not someone who likes the taste of honey then replace it with corn syrup. Honey has a pretty intense flavor and it’s also sweeter, so if you’re not using honey then cut back on the salt by half.
Last but not least, when it comes to egg whites, people are fickle. My mother personally thinks it’s disgusting but that doesn’t stop her from gorging on homemade marshmallows, but if you just refuse to use it then simply omit it, the recipe will just be thicker and set even quicker, but it will also be a little bit more difficult to work with.
The main thing with these marshmallows is that it doesn’t make a lot, once again with the four people in my apartment, I make a certain amount to make sure there is minimal waste, that being said this recipe can also be doubled and tripled and halved. You should also note that I used freeze dried fruit in this recipe. I didn’t want to just dye portions of the marshmallows and call it a day, I wanted to have fun and use a combination of flavors. I decided, since its summer, on fruit and then thought that the white part could be vanilla. People use strawberries, blueberries, vanilla and honey all the time for breakfast so why not for candy? The flavor outcome was great and I highly recommend switching things up like this when you’re baking. **p.s. my roommate said it tasted like her cereal while another said it tasted like fruit salad**
When you look at the colors you should know that I used food coloring for the blue but not for the red. I also used freeze dried fruit in this recipe as well. Freeze dried fruit it simply fruit (strawberries and blueberries in this recipe’s case) that’s had all the moisture taken out of it by way of liquid nitrogen. This is the best because they’re frozen at the peak of ripeness and they basically last forever with a pretty strong taste for the little bit that’s used.
Alterations: I know for a fact that freeze dried fruit can be difficult to find and a little on the pricy side. I bought mine at Mother Earth, the organic food store, for about $7 USD each. If you can’t seem to find it then using 1 to 2 tablespoons of strawberry and blueberry jam is fine, just make sure you cook your simple syrup about 10 degree higher. Obviously jam is looser than freeze dried fruit and can alter the texture, so omit the egg whites and cook your sugar longer and you’ll still have a good consistency without the freeze dried fruit.
This recipe, I thought, would be a pain, but when I was making it, it turned out to be one of the easiest processes I’ve ever done. I know I say that a lot, but when it comes to marshmallows it can be a pain in the-you-know-where. The main annoyance is waiting time for the simple syrup to cook; you want to cook it over medium heat so it can take upwards to 20 minutes depending on your stove.
Another annoyance, that wasn’t really an annoyance, was dividing up the marshmallow fluff, I figured since there isn’t much blue in the American flag I’d use less blue and more red and white; it worked out fine but dividing, since I’m so neurotic, turned out to be a hassle, but all in all the whole process from start to finish and the setting time and cutting them took about 2 to 3 hours, more so because I was being lazy and slothing around, but that’s still basically no time at all based off most marshmallow recipes.
*Take Note: with the honey, unlike simple syrup, when you cook it to such a high temperature it will start to foam, continue to mix it and occasionally take it off the stove to settle down, this will happen when it’s about to reach 200F and until it reaches about 215F**
Helpful Hints & Suggestions: lord have mercy can marshmallows be sticky, even after it sets. Coating your pan with oil or cooking spray is the optimal way to make sure there is no sticking, powdered sugar and corn starch are possible as well but it makes a bigger mess than I would like and it’s hard to get all the edges, so while I use powdered sugar/cornstarch after they’ve set I don’t like using it when I put the fluff in the pan to set. I would also suggest spraying your spatulas as well that way each layer doesn’t stick to the spatula and you can spread it more evenly and easily.
Also, when it’s time to pour the hot simple syrup into the egg whites, this can be nerve racking if you don’t have a stand mixer (which I don’t). The best piece of advice I can give you is pour it little by little and mix. I usually stream and mix at the same time until you see a consistency change in the egg whites, then I stop using the hand mixer and pour some more into the egg whites and mix again and continue until the pot is empty. It’s easier for me and I think it would work for you to.
Ta-Ta-For-Now: well that’s all over here. I know this may look harder than it seems, but I’m very detailed in the directions and was free with the setting time. I gave 3 hours but it really sets in about 1 hour. Enjoy this recipe and enjoy your weekend holiday.