In all my time in the kitchen, I’ve never made marshmallows. I’m not a big marshmallow eater, and never caught on to the gourmet marshmallow trend (was that even a thing?), so it’s never been really high on my priority list. That said, it is something I’ve always wanted to tackle, and for this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I finally did!
I didn’t have enough coconut or gelatin in the house, so I ended up making a half recipe in a 9 x 5 pan, and it worked perfectly. It was a bit tricky measuring out half of a gelatin packet though, so unless you have a very accurate scale I’d advise going with a whole recipe. I have included instructions for a whole recipe below, for simplicity sake.
These marshmallows are simple on their own, flavored only with vanilla, so you could definitely change up the flavors easily if coconut isn’t your thing. I liked the added nuttyness and texture with the coconut, but already have plans for making my next batch of marshmallows with new flavors. Chocolate, anyone?
I had a lot of fun making these, though they are QUITE a mess! After they’d finished whipping in my stand mixer, I has sticky marshmallow everywhere, and getting it out of the bowl and into the pan to set was good for a laugh. But Kevin and I did a lot of finger-licking, and I can always go for some of that.
Line a baking sheet with tin foil, and spread coconut evenly over it. Toast coconut on a baking sheet in the oven, stirring occasionally, until uniformly golden, about 7 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. If clumps have formed, gently break apart with your hands. Set aside.
Lightly oil a 9-inch square baking pan, and set aside.
Place 1/2 cup water in bowl of a stand mixer, and sprinkle gelatin over the top. Let soften while making the syrup.
Combine sugar, corn syrup, remaining 1/4 cup water, and salt in a heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar has dissolved. Once dissolved, increase heat to medium, and bring mixture to a boil. Insert a candy thermometer and boil, without stirring, until it registers 240 degrees. Remove from heat and let stand until bubbles are gone.
With mixer at low speed, pour hot syrup into gelatin in a thin stream down side of bowl. Some of the syrup will get stuck to the side of the bowl 0 don't worry about that. Once all of the syrup has been added, increase mixer speed to high and beat until very thick, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add vanilla extract and beat for 1 minute more.
Sprinkle bottom of prepared pan with 1/2 cup toasted coconut. Spoon marshmallow mixture over toasted coconut in baking pan and press evenly with dampened fingertips to smooth top (it will be very sticky). Sprinkle top evenly with 1/2 cup toasted coconut. Let stand, uncovered, at room temperature until firm, about 2 hours. If you'd like, you can place it in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes to help it set, then remove it to finish setting on the counter.
Once marshmallows are completely set, cut into one inch squares and cover the sides with the remaining toasted coconut. Store in an airtight container.