Rose marshmallows

Marshmallows, who doesn’t like marshmallows?!  Soft and fluffy on their own or toasted into molten goodness fresh from the bonfire oozing out between a couple of chocolate digestives.

And that’s just the shop bought ones. Homemade marshmallows are on an other level! Softer, fluffier and squishier!

Ooh I want another just thinking about them.


I first made them up in Edinburgh whilst staying with an old friend. I must have spotted a recipe in a magazine on my way up because when I arrived I remember being adamant that this is what we were going to spend our weekend making, everything else could be fitted around them. So off we went to lakeland for a jam thermometer, a square cake tin and an assortment of flavourings- why make one type when you can make a whole array! (The custard flavoured ones reminded us to Flumps which brought back great memories!)


I split this weekend’s batch in two; half for my mother to take up to my elderly grandmother in North Wales and the other half to take to my friends party this weekend. Well in three really- we had to keep a few for us- for quality control purposes of course!)


The recipe I used is based on one from the Ballymalloe Cookery Course – where my friend had been fortunate enough to spend 3 months (saying I am jealous is putting it mildly!). The only real change I have made is to the gelatine content- the original calls for 25g which makes them firmer and a little closer to shop bought ones but after accidentally only using 20g in one batch I now stick to that as they are softer, fluffier and squishier!

If you have any old eggs this is a great recipe to use them up as the ageing process causes the tightly wound proteins to loosen making it easier for them to reform around the air bubbles as you whisk giving you greater volume and larger fluffier marshmallows. The whisked eggs are however less stable and more prone to separating leaving you with a watery bottom half and foamy top which is why you mustn’t start whipping them up until the sugar has reached approximately 110°C. Starting with your egg whites at room temperature also has this effect, creating a more voluminous but less stable form. As volume is key I always use old egg whites that I have left out for a couple of hours to warm up.



Makes 64 marshmallows

Adapted from ‘Ballymalloe Cookery Course‘ by Darina Allen

8inch square tin

Vegetable oil
3tbsp icing sugar, to dust the tin and coat the set marshmallows
3tbsp cornflour, to dust the tin and coat the set marshmallows
20g gelatine (sheet or powder)
125ml water
2 egg whites
500g granulated sugar
250ml water
Pink food colouring
1 cap full of rose water (½ – 1 tsp)

  • Line the tin in baking paper and lightly grease with a little oil. Mix together the icing sugar and cornflour and give the oiled paper a sprinkling with a couple of teaspoons of the mix
  • Put the gelatine and 125ml of water in a bowl to soften for 5mins (make sure you separate the sheets)
  • Add the granulated sugar to a pan with 250ml water and gently heat, stirring carefully (wiping any granules of sugar off the side of the pan with a wet pastry brush) until all the sugar has dissolved. Turn up the heat to high and leave to boil (without stirring) until it reaches 122°C
  • As the sugar is heating place the bowl containing softened gelatine and water over a pan of gently simmering water to dissolve
  • When the sugar reaches approximately 110°C whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks
  • As soon as the sugar has reached 122°C take it off the heat, stir in the gelatine (it will boil up the pan) and, with the eggs whisking on a slow/medium speed, pour the sugar onto the eggs, taking care not to land the stream on the whisk or too far up the bowl
  • Whisk the mixture on a medium/high speed until it has cooled and thickened
  • Add the food colouring and rose water and whisk in
  • Pour the mixture into the square tin, level and leave to set in a cool place (but not the fridge) for around 2 hours
  • Once set lift the marshmallow block out onto a chopping board and cut into pieces using an oiled knife and coat in the icing sugar/ cornflour mixture
  • Store in an airtight container. If left alone they last at least a week


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