more marshmallow madness again

smorebyerlys

photo credit: J Donatelle

The marshmallow train moves forward as I finally brought a bit of my madness to the masses. A friend who directs a local culinary school had asked me on board to teach a class on boozy marshmallows and last Friday was the big day.

My plan was to treat the evening class like a cocktail party, so I dolled up and packed up and joined the brave souls who had committed their Friday evening to Marshmallow Madness.

Joan, my cooking school friend, and her staff did an amazing job creating that party vibe. On display (and yes, for sampling) were the batches of lager, margarita, and vanilla bean marshmallows I’d made earlier that day.wpid-2014-05-30-14.06.09.jpg.jpeg

ta-da!

ta-da!

I whipped up bourbon ‘mallows in class and while it wasn’t my best hair day, the ‘mallows were a hit.

Joan brilliantly assembled crazy good “adult s’mores” with fun cookies, crackers, and high-end chocolates. She also threaded strawberry margarita kabobs using the ‘rita marshmallows.smorebyerlysreta kabobs

My objective for the class was to convince folks that making marshmallows is 1) easy and 2) fun. As well, I wanted them to feel comfortable improvising. Up to half (maybe more, I’ve yet to try) of the liquid in any recipe can be replaced by spirit, soda, or juice of your choice. Marshmallows are also good for stir-ins (mini chocolate chips, anyone?) and coatings (toasted coconut, please). Possibilities are limited only by the cook’s imagination.

We sampled a number of different recipes, all varying in amounts of egg whites, sugar, corn syrup, gelatin, and liquid. The Miette vanilla bean marshmallows were drier and less sticky to make, but the downside is that they don’t stay fresh as long. (Though fresh marshmallows tend to disappear quickly so shelf life may not be an issue.)

Shana Sever’s margarita ‘mallows were the most “wet,” which some people love and others not so much. Yet all of the recipes I’ve tried from Sever’s book have stayed fresh for as long as I’ve managed to keep them around. Sever’s don’t contain egg whites; Alton Brown’s (in which I substituted lager for half of the water) do.

Drying in the pan: Alton Brown's recipe with a lager twist.

Uncut: Alton Brown’s recipe with a lager twist.

There’s plenty of variety in marshmallow making and I encourage anyone who has even the slightest bit of interest to give it a go. The hardest part is the cleanup–and soap and hot water are all you need to dissolve the sticky, sugary mess left on beaters and in the bowl.

More marshmallow-making fun:

vanilla bean turned out and ready to slice

vanilla bean turned out and ready to slice

margaritas ready to cut, then roll in pearl sugar

margaritas ready to cut, then roll in pearl sugar

cutting cubes and tossing in powdered sugar/corn syrup mixture

cutting cubes and tossing in powdered sugar/cornstarch mixture

never ceases to amaze me--it's magic!

never ceases to amaze me–it’s magic!

 

72 thoughts on “more marshmallow madness again

  1. I can’t tell you how much I look forward to your posts, the pictures of the final product/s – and now a great picture of you too!! I’m such a fan – can you tell?

    • Awwww, thank you, Mimi! I love that I might be spreading some marshmallow joy πŸ˜‰ (not related in any way to the Almond Joy, haha) Looks like we have a mutual admiration society thing going on.

    • Thanks, Suzanne. No kidding on the taste terrific–yes. I didn’t sample during class, but during clean up I had my share. Realized when I went to bed that night that all I’d had for supper was marshmallows, chocolate, etc. It’s a wonder I could even sleep πŸ™‚

    • let me know how it goes, Princess. I’m certain your adorable kitchen helper will love the project πŸ™‚ You’ll get great messy-face photos out of this one!

  2. Looks like you had fun! What a neat class, come teach down here! I plan on making marshmallows with the boys this summer for s’mores with homemade graham crackers too. I will have to make a boozy batch for myself, I’m thinking piΓ±a colada with a toasted coconut coating!

    • Thanks, MamaD. I could certainly take my class on the road. Would be a great way to expense my travel. Line me up with a cooking school and I’m there! (Mama D’s Cooking School has a nice ring to it πŸ˜‰ )

      You’re so there with your piΓ±a colada ‘mallows. You need no further instruction πŸ™‚

  3. What kind of cookie/crackers are those? They look enticing. The sheet of marshmallows looked like a block of tofu at one point, but I know they would taste soooooooo much better.

  4. What a ball Liz! I wish I could have been there. I really want to try making marshmallows now. Seems like such a fun thing to do with kids, well…and if you booze them up a little with adults too!

    • I wish you could have been too, Seana, but as you can see in my reply to Mama D above, I should probably think about a traveling marshmallow school so I can get out and see the sights more often. We can work the details out when I stop by for that breakfast tart this Saturday πŸ˜‰

      Fun for kids of all ages–thanks!

    • Glad you Like–thanks πŸ™‚ Let me know if you do make. And for sure Fannie and Bunny would have a blast. Think Lucy and Ethel and chocolates–now think F and B and marshmallow making. ??? Your next book is practically writing itself!

  5. Liz, this looks like SO much fun. I loved reading about your fun night and seeing the photos. I may try some marshmallows this week! They make great gifts. Those s’mores are ingenious… your friend had a great idea. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you, Shanna. It was a fun night and wish you’d been around for it. You would get so many amazing photos with this project. Snu and Littlest would look muy adorable with white sticky marshmallow goo all over their faces (and in their hair). Can’t wait to see πŸ˜€

  6. What an awesome class. I love that photo with you and the giant whisk. The marshmallows look so fluffy. It’s high time I learned since you and I are both campers. i’m going to bring my own next time we go. Thanks so much for this! So fun!

    • Thanks, Amanda. What I told the class about DIY ‘mallows is that I would NOT roast them on a stick. Should they fall into the first–entirely possibly since they’re more fresh than the Jet-Puff variety–I would be very very sad. Though Joan proved they broil very well. And if you dare to roast over a campfire, let me know how it goes!

      Would love to hear how things go if you make a batch πŸ™‚

  7. What a fun class, Liz! I have never made marshmallows before but enjoy them very much in s’mores. Will have to give this a go when I have my nieces and nephews near me–they will love making and eating them, no doubt!

    • Thanks, Ngan. It’s all yum–no matter the age–when we’re talking marshmallows. S’mores are classic, yes! And they’re even better with fresh marshmallows for sure.

  8. LIZ!! I’m going to try making marshmallows. ASAP. With rum, I think. And then I’ll make rummy s’mores and tweet you a picture. And maybe some with Baileys?? Yum!! Which recipe do you recommend I use?

    P.S. Your hair looks awesome.

    • KAELA!! That’s awesome, I’d love to see how it goes for you. They’d be amazing. Please do point, click, and tweet. Or post. I’m going back to my post and adding the bourbon marshmallow link. These were the favorites in the class. The Miette was yum, but drier than I like. The margarita too wet (for me). Alton Brown’s is classic. Really, you can’t go wrong. You’ll have to try more than one!

      Appreciate your comment on my hair. Cracks me up as I tried to do my hair nicely and even checked it in a mirror before the class, fluffing it up in the right places, etc. Then I saw the photo and could only laugh. Why is it sticking up in the back? Sheesh.

    • Thanks, Ada! I love my marshmallow posts, too πŸ™‚ And I’m so glad you’re here with me. Love that it all started with your granola bars πŸ˜€

  9. Hi Liz, I’m Mary from Mary’s Secret Ingredients, I found your blog through Suzanne! Your marshmallows look great, I’ve never heard of a lager marshmallow but it sounds amazing!

    • Mary! I ordered one of your boxes in April and put it up on deLizious facebook πŸ™‚ Thinking you saw it when I posted on your page. Am honored to have you here. I admire what you do so much.

      Appreciate you stopping by. Glad to find another marshmallow fan.

  10. Aaaaah yummy!! Marshmallows are my absolute guilty pleasure! We rarely buy them simply because they are so addictive and me and my mum fight over who gets them! (We don’t share packets haha!!) Maybe we have found a way around this? I had no idea you could make them from scratch…I thought that was the processed beauty of them but apparently not!! Recipe saved! πŸ™‚ Yum.

    • Thanks, Tash πŸ™‚ I’m all about sharing my food, but agree that there are some things I’d rather keep to myself. (ice cream malts, for one) Yes absolutely you can make your own ‘mallows. Be sure to double the batch so you and your mum can each have your own πŸ˜€

  11. I’m not sure I’d ever care about having another marshmallow BUT the addition of booze might just make me re-think this position! Is there any issue about making marshmallow when the weather is warm? High humidity problems? I don’t want to waste any booze, you see . . . .

    • haha, thanks, Kerry. For real, even the plain vanilla bean are amazing. Something about how fresh and soft and pillowy they are–worlds apart from the processed sort.

      You ask good questions. Technically, a marshmallow is a meringue, so humidity could be an issue, but it’s not like you’re trying to make a dry meringue cookie or pie topping. Would think you’d be fine as long as you take the sugar syrup to the right temperature. The gelatin is key to providing structure. Also, the toss in powdered sugar/cornstarch helps them dry on the outside so they are not sticky to the touch. Totally agree it would be a crying shame to waste the booze. Let me know if you go ahead with this project!

  12. Boozy marshmallows?! I think I love you! I’m not a bit lolly eater but I never say no to marshmallows! ps – can you please come to Sydney to teach this class? Thanks πŸ™‚

    • Thanks! love your comment–cracked me up. I’ll put Sydney on my itinerary whenever I do that Marshmallow Tour πŸ˜€ I would like to use “Never Say No to Marshmallows” as my tagline when I do πŸ˜‰

  13. I would so go to a marshmallow making class – especially if you were teaching it! That class looks like so much fun!! This *may* have just convinced me to make some marshmallows πŸ˜€

    • Wow–thanks. Your comment made me smile bit πŸ˜€ Agreed, what could be better than making boozy marshmallows? Little else, I’m sure. It was a fun class and am grateful for my friend suggesting it. She is quite a visionary.

  14. Wow Liz! I love all these creative and fun marshmallow ideas! I am not a huge marshmallow fan but even I want to try making them now. Maybe when it is cooler again, I will make it for some boozy hot chocolate πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, Lilly Sue. Wish you could try the lager version. My original intent was to make them with stout (what I had done before), but most of the beers at our local liquor store were summery and I knew I wanted something deeper and darker. Luckily, I found this lager labeled “dark and creamy.” Bingo!

      Yes to the boozy ‘mallows in hot chocolate. I’m in πŸ˜€

  15. I just want to take a nose-dive into that sheet of marshmallows. Or lie down as if it were a pillow! I love all the creative approaches to marshmallows and I would have totally been sitting in the front row of that class, raising my hand – pick me pick me oh please pick me – when it came time for volunteers! Love the photo of you in action, cool and in charge! πŸ™‚

    • I like the idea of jumping around in a big marshmallow pit πŸ™‚ And I’d have picked you for sure had you been in the class, Bonnie. Many of the comments have mentioned me teaching a class elsewhere, so I’ll have to put a marshmallow tour together. San Fran will be one of my stops! Though I think I”d hire you on as the tour photographer.

      Cool and in charge, huh? Hope the students thought that, too. I wouldn’t say I was frazzled, but I felt a bit like a silly child getting so amped up about fluffy sugar clouds. It’s just so much fun, though.

  16. I still don’t entirely understand this “making marshmallows” thing, but bourbon marshmallows sound awesome, and the process does look fun!

    • they’re tasty, Dave, and would be a good snack come trivia night! If you can understand brain science, you can understand this “making marshmallow” thing πŸ˜‰

  17. P.S. What’s going on with the headset and the “Cooking class” sign behind you – do you do a TV or web-based cooking show?

    • Thanks, Karen πŸ™‚ Lots of fun, yes, though I cautioned the students not to roast them over an open fire, just because I’d hate to loose a DIY ‘mallow to the flames. How sad that would be πŸ˜‰ So glad you’re here!

    • Thanks, CCU! lol, I think someone called me the Marshmallow Queen in another comment, too. Hah–funny the titles we end up with πŸ˜‰ Appreciate you being here very much.

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