These gin and tonic marshmallows make a perfect gift for a gin loving friend or to share on Valentine's day with that someone special. Fluffy marshmallows flavoured with gin and tonic, what's not to love.
Gin and Tonic
It seems that the world is going mad for gin at the moment. Personally I don't mind, it's been one of my favourite drinks since the early 90's. While I am happy to just drink gin and tonic, I don't see why I shouldn't join in the fun and use it as a flavouring too.
A couple of years ago I worked on a part-work magazine called Something Sweet, published by De Agostini. It was one of my all time favourite jobs, developing chocolate and confectionery recipes and preparing them for photography. Over the 90 issues that made up the collection I developed several marshmallow recipes. I haven't made them since and I thought it would be fun to revisit them. As I was thinking about flavours gin and tonic sprang to mind. I have stuck with the same basic method I used for the recipes I made for Something Sweet. It worked, so why change it. Then it was just a case of going to the kitchen and playing with flavours.
Home Made Marshmallows
Now, if you haven't tasted homemade marshmallows then let me tell you, you are in for a treat. They are so much nicer than those mass produced ones you get in a bag. You know the ones, pink and white puffs with little flavour. When making marshmallows at home, I tend to make them and cut them into squares that are tossed in a mixture of icing sugar and cornflour.
Cutting them out can be a bit sticky, but lightly oiling your knife will help, just use whatever cooking oil you have to hand and wipe clean frequently. Alternatively, keep cleaning the knife with hot water.
For that someone special who is a bit of a softy, you could cut them into heart shapes with an oiled cookie cutter. Consider the trimmings as cook's perks 😉
Use a Thermometer
These gin and tonic marshmallows really are quite quick and easy to make, but you do need to allow enough time for them to set. This is a recipe for which you will need a thermometer because the sugar syrup has to be heated to the right temperature. You can use a sugar thermometer that clips onto the pan which are fairly inexpensive. I use a digital thermometer as they are the most accurate and I would recommend you get one. While a little more expensive they are more useful as not only are they great when making jam or confectionery, they also mean you never again have to overcook a piece of meat just to be on the safe side!
Because the sugar is boiled to a high temperature, you will need to be very careful. It is not a good idea to make them if you have young children around or are likely to be distracted. It should take about 5 minutes to reach the correct temperature. I often find when making a sugar syrup that it seems to stick on the same temperature for a while then suddenly shoots up several degrees very quickly, so stay with it and don't be tempted to look away.
Gin and Tonic Marshmallows
- oil for greasing
- 6 sheets of leaf gelatine
- 1 large egg white
- 150 ml tonic water
- 250 g granulated sugar
- 4 tbsp gin
- grated zest 1 lime
- 2 tbsp icing powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp cornflour corn starch
- Line a 20cm/8in shallow square cake tin with baking parchment and lightly oil.
- Place the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water to soak for 5 minutes.
- Place the egg white in a large grease-free icing bowl and get the whisk ready for when the sugar syrup is made.
- To make the syrup, place the tonic water in the saucepan and add the granulated sugar. Heat gently, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Once all the sugar has completely dissolved bring the sugar syrup to a boil and continue to boil without stirring until the temperature reaches 115°C/239°F.
- As soon as the sugar syrup reaches the correct temperature, remove from the heat. Lift the gelatine sheets out of the water and squeeze off the excess water then add to the syrup one at time, stirring well until dissolved. Then stir in the gin.
- Working quickly, whisk the egg whites until standing in stiff peaks, then with the whisk running on a low speed, very slowly whisk the hot syrup into the egg whites. Pour it in a thin and steady stream, trying to avoid hitting the beaters.
- When all the syrup has been added, add the lime zest and increase the speed of the mixer and continue whisking for about 8 to 10 minutes until you have a thick glossy mixture. The mixture will fall from the whisk in a slow ribbon like stream when it is ready.
- Pour into the prepared tin and leave in a cool place (not the fridge) for 4–6 hours until set and springy to the touch.
- Mix together the icing sugar and cornflour and dust the top of the marshmallow with the mixture. Turn out onto a board and carefully remove the parchment paper. Dust with a little more cornflour mixture and cut into squares.
- Gently toss the squares into the cornflour mixture and serve immediately or store in an airtight container in a cool place for 3 days.
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