A few weeks back I got an itch to make some marshmallows. I’m not sure where the urge came from, but suddenly and very acutely, I
wanted needed them. You see, homemade marshmallows are not like the kind you get from the store. Those marshmallows are not very enjoyable unless some sort of toasting or melting is involved. With homemade marshmallows, however, you can eat them plain and pop them in your mouth like popcorn without any heating needed to improve their texture. They are so absurdly and delightfully fluffy and soft that you can easily eat a dozen in a single sitting; no slightly tough exterior coating of any kind, it’s just all good, smooshy airy sweetness. This is both a wonderful and very dangerous thing.
I wanted to include some sort of freeze-dried fruit in them for flavor and color; I’d experimented with that once before for this insanely purple blueberry cream cheese frosting and loved how it turned out, so I started scouring markets for a fun freeze-dried fruit to try. On a recent trip to Seattle, I spotted some freeze-dried black currants in a tea shop, and immediately snatched them up. They were sold with the intent to mix them into dried loose leaf teas to add a fruity element, but I had more lofty, fluffy plans in store for them. I used a blender to break down the berries and dried lavender into a fine powder, and incorporated that into the marshmallow mixture.
For the vanilla bean & rose marshmallows, I used vanilla extract, vanilla bean paste, and a dash of rosewater. The black currant lavender marshmallows had the perfect balance of fruit and tang (black currants can be a bit tart), and the herbal notes of the lavender cut through the slightly sour fruitiness of the currants perfectly, plus it made for a gorgeous natural lavender hue. The vanilla bean & rose marshmallows were wonderfully sweet without being cloyingly so, and the floral flavors from the rose wound into the comforting warmth of the vanilla and created a marshmallow so good I started dropping one into my mug of tea each morning (they go particularly well with a strong earl grey).
And on a non-marshmallow note, the Saveur Food Blog Awards are coming up! If you’d like to nominate my blog, or any other ones you follow & enjoy, you can do so here 😀
Also, Carey and I just wrapped up our Asheville workshop and have decided we may never leave North Carolina. Everything here is so beautiful (we’re staying in town a few days post-workshop to do more exploring) and the folks are so friendly, plus the breweries make insanely good and cheap beer ($5 for a pint of Belgian microbrew? Please and thank you.) You can take a look at some of the photos from the weekend on my instagram, and I’ll be posting about it soon. Also, we still have a couple spaces left at the upcoming Cape Cod photography, styling, & cheese making workshop. You can register below, we would love to have you join us!!
You can store them in an air-tight container for up to 2 weeks, just make sure not the expose them to free-flowing air for an extended period of time otherwise they will get stale and the texture won’t be as nice and fluffy.