Tuesday, 20 October 2009

marshmallows made with beetroot...

A few weeks ago Ted and I made some homemade marshmallows, following the River Cottage recipe, below. They are great fun to make, especially with children, but a little scary as they contain so much sugar and you have to heat it too! The worse thing is, that I don't own a food mixer, I am not one for gadgets, and love the 'old fashioned' kitchen, with wooden spoons etc... but when you have a recipe like this that requires a lot of beating, then blimey, it's hard work on the wrist! We beat the mixture for about half an hour and then had to collect Alfie from school, so had a break and then had to go back home to beat it some more - phew! It was worth it though, they cooked well over a campfire and tasted good too, you could even detect a hint of beetroot, but next time I really need a mixer (love this one in almond cream) or a strong man on hand!

River Cottage Beetroot Marshmallows

• 1-2 tbsp icing sugar
• 1-2 tbsp cornflour
• A little vegetable oil for oiling the tin and knife
• 1 small, raw, peeled beetroot
• 25g gelatine powder (about 2 sachets, but check the packet)
• 500g granulated sugar
• 2 egg whites


1. Sift the icing sugar and cornflour together into a small bowl.
2. Rub a shallow cake tin of about 20x20cm with a few drops of vegetable oil and shake a little of the icing sugar mixture around the tin to coat the base and sides.
3. Grate the beetroot into a small bowl and pour over 125ml of nearly boiling water and leave to infuse for 30 seconds. Strain the pink, nearly boiling water into a bowl and sprinkle the gelatine on top. Stir until all of the gelatine has dissolved.
4. Put the sugar into a medium-sized saucepan with 250ml of water. Warm over a low heat, stirring until all of the sugar has dissolved, then place a sugar thermometer in the pan and raise the heat, allowing the mixture to boil fiercely without stirring until the thermometer reads 122C. Remove from the heat and pour the beetroot/gelatine mixture into the hot sugar syrup, stirring until everything is well blended.
5. Pour the egg whites into the large bowl of a mixer and beat until stiff. With the mixer going at a low speed, slowly pour in the sugar mixture in a steady, gentle trickle. After you’ve added all of the syrup, leave the machine to carry on beating until the mixture turns really thick and bulky but is still pourable – when you lift up the beater, it should leave a ribbon trail of the mixture on the surface which takes a few seconds to sink back down into the mix.
6. Pour the marshmallow into the prepared tin. Leave to set in a cool place (do not refrigerate) for an hour or two.
7. Dust a chopping board with the rest of the cornflour and icing sugar mixture. Coat a knife with a little oil. Carefully ease the marshmallow out of the tin onto the board, helping it out where necessary with the knife. Make sure all of the surfaces of the marshmallow are entirely dusted with the icing sugar mixture. Cut the marshmallows into squares, oiling and dusting the knife as needed. Store in an airtight tin lined with baking parchment.


  1. Emma, this recipe looks great fun, and the mixture is such a lovely, scrummy shade of pink! I have the Kitchenaid mixer in cream! I can vouch for it - it's my trusty kitchen friend, and I use it ALL the time, and never have to call on a strong man for help! ... perhaps you could ask Father Christmas for one?!! With all the wonderful cooking you do I'm sure it would be well used :o) Do you know there is a lemon squeezing attachment you can buy - great for home made lemonade!
    Lucy xx
    PS Love you blog!

  2. That beetroot is some shade of red isn't it?! Amazing!!

    And you are waaaay more woman than myself. I have a stand mixer and I still won't touch an attempt at making marshmallow! Bravo to you sister!

  3. pink to make me wink ^_*
    wonder if it would work with veggie gelatine?
    we do miss a toasted marshmallow
    it's the stuff of bonfires and Autumn

  4. Looks great will give them a go. Can vouch for the mixer - I have one in apple green - I use it loads and love it.

  5. Oh how cool--I tried making marshmallows once using the Martha Stewart recipe, but I tried replaceing the gelatin with pectin and my mixer ran for 20 minutes before I turned it off, afraid it would burn out, and tossed the brown (due to the use of raw sugar) guey mess...maybe I'll try again with this recipe and actual gelatin, although the cow foot thing kind of grosses me out!

  6. Good choice on mixer, I got one for Christmas last year, I thought if I was going to go down that path (I do prefer the idea of doing things by hand but we all have vacuum cleaners right!) then I needed one that at least looked the part, and now I use it every week sometimes more. However note that the white one for some reason is a whole lot cheaper just because of the colour.

  7. o technology makes things easier. i ever encountered a day without mixer and a cake to make. it's about 2 days before our idul fitri. hectic and mixer out of order, in this case strong hand really came handy

    -simple hi from Indonesia-

  8. mmmm that looks delish! and sucha pretty color!

  9. Beetroot marshmallows! What an epic idea - do you have any photographs of the finished sweet? I was thinking of trying out some traditional mallow flower marshmallows I saw on souschef.co.uk ...but now I'm not sure if traditional is the best way to go!


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