My family used to own a sugar camp. Every spring, my uncles would take us out to the woods to collect the sap buckets. We would sit in the back of the pick up truck and enjoy the ride through the bush. When we arrived at the camp, my uncle would start boiling the sap and we would sit at the table and play card games.
I always looked forward to the first batch, where we would throw some syrup on the snow and make maple candy. With cold little hands holding a popsicle stick, I would savour that candy for hours.
In 1998, many of the maple trees on my family’s property were destroyed in the ice storm and we had no choice but to close the sugar shack. I miss having an endless supply of maple syrup. Especially now that I live in Texas where oil is cheaper than syrup!
I’ve been wanting to make my own maple marshmallows for quite some time, but every recipe claimed they were impossible to make without a stand mixer. As much as I would love to have my own stand mixer, I found it strange that you could not make marshmallows without one.
I like a challenge so I gave it a try, and you know what? No stand mixer required! If you can hold a hand mixer for 20 minutes, you can make your own marshmallows, save $300 plus dollars, AND get a great arm workout.
p.s. I would like to apologize to Canada for using maple extract. If it wasn’t so expensive here, I swear I would have used the real thing! Please don’t disown me!
- 3 Tbsp. unflavoured gelatin powder (3 packets)
- ½ cup and 2 tablespoons of cold water
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1 Tsp. maple extract
- ¾ cup water
- 1 ¼ cup dark corn syrup
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 2 cups powdered sugar, divided
- 1 cup corn starch, divided
Prepare a 9×13 in baking pan with cooking spray. (Ensure the entire dish is coated, as the marshmallow mixture is very sticky. Combine ½ cup of powdered sugar with ¼ cup cornstarch. Sift mixture into the baking dish and shake so the dish is coated. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine gelatin, vanilla extract, and maple extract with ½ cup and 2 tablespoons of cold water. Gently whisk mixture until well combined and no lumps remain. Continue to whisk until the gelatin reaches a consistency similar to baby food (about one minute). Set aside.
In a medium saucepan combine ¾ cup water, corn syrup, granulated sugar, and salt. Whisk to combine and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Cover pot, reduce heat and simmer for about 2 and a half minutes. Remove from heat.
Pour mixture over gelatin and beat on medium with an electric mixer until combined, about one minute. Increase speed to maximum and beat for 15-20 minutes until the mixture is glossy and makes meringue like peaks.
Pour marshmallow mixture into prepared 9×13 inch dish and spread evenly. Wet spatula and smooth the top until it’s even.
Leave the marshmallow mixture uncovered on a counter for 24 hours to set.
Once the marshmallows have set, prepare your workspace. Combine remaining powdered sugar and cornstarch in a medium sized bowl. Dust some of the mixture onto a cutting board.
Wet a sharp knife and drag it along the edges of the 9×13 inch dish to loosen the marshmallow mixture. Sprinkle some of the powdered sugar onto the top of the marshmallows and flip the dish onto prepared cutting board.
Cut the marshmallows into squares, occasionally wetting the knife to make more precise cuts. Toss marshmallow squares in the cornstarch sugar mixture until well coated.
Store marshmallows in a sealed container, layered between wax paper.