“life is uncertain. eat dessert first.” – ernestine ulmer
*yawn* i am slightly foggy from the non-stop weekend. “inception” was a brilliant maze, the indie mart was sunny and charming, my friends were a sight for sore eyes and the dinners and brunches were heaven.
still, i am excited for this upcoming week. my inner domestic goddess has been nagging me to attempt a new sweet treat and i have finally found one that sounds out of this world.
earl grey marshmallows.
yep, you heard me. the airy, spongy, sugary cubes we love to toast and float are easy to make in our own kitchens. and, if you pop them into glassine or cellophane bags and seal with a label, they make delightful gifts for your favorite friends and family!
the inspiration for the earl grey infused sweets came from the photo above. i stumbled upon it this weekend while shopping for wedding labels and have been dreaming about it ever since. and after some recipe sleuthing, i came across gourmet & smitten kitchen’s inspiring recipe and improvised it to my own benefit 🙂
for those of you who are not earl grey fans, you can easily replace this flavor (and the bergamot extract} with a favorite one – peppermint, lemon, vanilla – the possibilities are endless.
2 cups granulated sugar (cane sugar worked just fine)
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites or reconstituted powdered egg whites
1 tablespoon bergamot extract (alternately: 1/2 of a scraped vanilla bean or 1 tbsp vanilla extract)
oil bottom and sides of a 13- by 9- by 2-inch rectangular metal baking pan and dust bottom and sides with some confectioners’ sugar.
in bowl of a standing electric mixer or in a large bowl sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup cold earl grey tea, and let stand to soften.
in a 3-quart heavy saucepan cook granulated sugar, corn syrup, 3/4 cup of cold earl grey tea, and salt over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until sugar is dissolved. increase heat to moderate and boil mixture, without stirring, until a candy or digital thermometer registers 240°F, about 12 minutes. remove pan from heat and pour sugar mixture over gelatin mixture, stirring until gelatin is dissolved.
with standing or a hand-held electric mixer beat mixture on high speed until white, thick, and nearly tripled in volume, about six minutes if using standing mixer or about 10 minutes if using hand-held mixer. (some reviewers felt this took even longer with a hand mixer, but still eventually whipped up nicely.)
in separate medium bowl with cleaned beaters beat egg whites (or reconstituted powdered whites) until they just hold stiff peaks. Beat whites and bergamot (or your choice of flavoring) into sugar mixture until just combined. pour mixture into baking pan and don’t fret if you don’t get it all out (learning from my mess of a first round). sift 1/4 cup confectioners sugar evenly over top. chill marshmallow, uncovered, until firm, at least three hours, and up to one day.
run a thin knife around edges of pan and invert pan onto a large cutting board. Lifting up one corner of inverted pan, with fingers loosen marshmallow and ease onto cutting board. with a large knife trim edges of marshmallow and cut marshmallow into roughly one-inch cubes. (an oiled pizza cutter works well here too.) sift remaining confectioners’ sugar back into your now-empty baking pan, and roll the marshmallows through it, on all six sides, before shaking off the excess and packing them away.
do ahead: marshmallows keep in an airtight container at cool room temperature 1 week.