Orange and pistachio marshmallows

A while back, for reasons I can’t remember, but perhaps in an attempt to break out from my usual ‘safe’ baking habits, I bought some gelatine, and then never found a use for it. Last week I finally decided to use it, and had a go at making marshmallows.

After doing some digging for a recipe, I came across this recipe from Ottolenghi (the expensive London deli). I had all of the ingredients, and set about producing my own.

The recipe was easy to follow, but I used an electric hand whisk as I don’t have a stand mixer. It took the full 15 minutes for the mixture to thicken, but which time my arm was grateful for a rest, and my hand whisk was on the verge of overheating.

For a first attempt, I think they’ve come out really well. They have the proper ‘bubbly’ marshmallow texture, and a subtle orange taste that goes well with the pistachio. I only had 3/4tbps orange blossom water, and I think using the full 1 1/2tbps might have made them too much of orange blossom (it has quite a distinctive flavour), for me anyway. They’ve lasted really well too, and I’d say that the taste is better this week than last. I was worried the pistachios would go soggy, but although they are a bit damp from the moisture in the marshmallows, they don’t seem to have suffered.

I have a couple of reservations about the recipe though. 300g of ground pistachio is far too much. You’ll see that I coated all sides of the cubes, unlike only the top and bottom in the original recipe. I only had 200g of whole pistachios, so whizzed them all up in my blender, but was left with at least half unused after coating my marshmallows. Pistachios are expensive, and it’s a shame to have wasted around 100g. I’ve taken to mixing the remaining ones into my porridge in the morning, which actually works quite well. If you’re trying these, I’d start with 100g and see how you get on.

I also only had leaf gelatine, not the powdered stuff the recipe called for. I did some internet searching, and it seemed that you could use either so long as you used the same weight. However, my mixture set almost as soon as I stopped whisking it, and it was actually quite difficult to spoon into the tin and flatten. So, I think 13g of leaf gelatine might have been too much (the stuff I used was labelled ‘platinum grade‘, so perhaps less is needed the better the quality?). Having said that, it doesn’t seem to have affected the taste or the texture of the final product.

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