Thursday, September 22, 2005

Hot Chocolate and Shaped Marshmallows

Cool weather is beginning to hit the island, the wind, instead of refreshing, nips now. So it's time to pull out and dust off recipes for warm treats. What could be more congenial than hot chocolate? Real hot chocolate, not the powdered stuff. (yes, I use the powdered stuff too but life can afford better than that.)

Hot Chocolate

Pour chocolate syrup into bottom of cup: 1/2 ounce for every 8 oz of milk. Warm milk to 165-170 degrees. Pour over chocolate syrup slowly swirling the cup at the beginning to melt and integrate chocolate well. I recommend a bittersweet dark chocolate.

Shaped Marshmallows

2 tablespoons plain gelatin
2/3 cups light corn syrup
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Pour 1/2 cup of cold water into a bowl and add gelatin. Let sit 5 minutes. While gelatin is sitting prep a rimmed cookie sheet by spraying with cooking spray, lining with parchment paper and spraying again. I know this seems like overkill but let's face it - we have a really sticky recipe here.

In medium saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup, salt and 1/3 cup water. Bring to a boil, then stir occasionally until it reaches soft-ball stage (or 238 degrees on a candy thermometer). Pull from heat.

Start mixing the gelatin on low then slowly pour in the boiling syrup mixture. Gradually increase the mixer speed until mixture is thick and white and trebled in volume. Add vanilla and mix another few seconds to combine. Pour onto parchment lined pan and let cool at room temperature at least 4 hours. (I'd do this part the night before and punch out the shapes in the morning.) Punch out shapes with a cooking spray coated cookie cutter. (I am eyeing a cute pumpkin shaped cutter now.)

You can substitute any flavor you want for vanilla to change the flavor profile. Orange or Coffee would be delish although not as popular with the kid crowd. Try coating them in colored sugar crystals, for a Peep-like treat. If you want to store them put a light dusting of cornstarch on them, to discourage sticking.

Disclaimer: I stole most of the marshmallow recipe from The Martha from her magazine a few years ago.

1 comment:

s.j.simon said...

lol. did you know that chocolate was banned in switzerland for many years. read this