These perfectly dusted pieces of Vanilla Bean Marshmallow are sure to be a crowdpleaser.
Makes approx. 40 pieces
Butter, to grease
1 1/2 cups icing sugar mixture
1/2 cup cornflour
2 cups caster sugar
1 tbsp glucose syrup
1/4 cup gelatine powder
2 tsp vanilla bean paste
2 egg whites
Food colouring, to tint (optional)
Food essences, to flavour (optional)
Grease a 21 x 31 x 4cm-deep roasting pan with butter and line with baking paper, extending paper over long sides. Sift icing sugar and cornflour into a bowl. Using a pastry brush, dust base of prepared pan with icing sugar mixture. Set aside remaining mixture.
Place sugar, glucose syrup and 3/4 cup water in a medium saucepan over a low heat. Stir for 3-4 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Simmer, without stirring, for 2 minutes or until sugar syrup reaches 125°C on a sugar thermometer.
Meanwhile, place 3/4 cup just-boiled water in a small bowl. Sprinkle over gelatine and whisk with a fork to dissolve. Remove syrup from heat and carefully whisk in vanilla bean paste and gelatine mixture until well combined.
Put egg whites in the large, clean metal bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium-high, using whisk attachment, for 2 minutes or until firm peaks form. With motor running, pour in hot sugar syrup in a steady stream, then continue to beat on high speed for 7-8 minutes or until mixture holds its shape but is still pourable, adding food colouring or essence, if using. Working quickly, use a spatula to scrape mixture into prepared pan. Smooth the surface.
Set aside at room temperature for 2-3 hours (if hot, place in a cool part of the house) or until set.
Place a large sheet of baking paper onto benchtop and generously dust with some of the reserved icing sugar mixture. Turn out marshmallow slab onto paper. Using a dampened knife, cut slab into 4cm squares, then dust pieces with remaining icing sugar mixture to prevent sticking. Serve.
• You need to work quickly. If the marshmallow sets, you will lose your smooth mixture.
• Instead of dusting in icing sugar and cornflour, you could use toasted desiccated coconut or gold leaf.
• Use cookie cutters to stamp out trees, stars or gingerbread shapes.
• Make a marshmallow centrepiece by creating a wreath shape from the cut squares. Decorate with raspberries and Christmas decorations and let your guests help themselves.