These healthy homemade marshmallows get their pink colour from hibiscus tea. Rose is astringent and helps uplift the spirit and reduce anxiety and inflammation. These are lovely served with tea on a dessert tray.
2 tablespoons of tapioca starch for dusting (divided)
1 cup of water, boiling
1 tablespoon unsprayed rose petals, dried
1 tablespoon hibiscus flowers, dried
½ cup of rose hydrosol
3 tablespoons beef gelatin
1 ½ cups of honey
¼ teaspoon Himalayan salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon rose water, culinary
Grease a 9 x 9 pan. Line the pan with parchment paper in two directions. Lightly dust the parchment paper with 1 teaspoon of tapioca starch.
Pour boiling water over hibiscus and rose petals in a tea pot. Steep the herbal tea for 10 minutes. Reserve ½ cup of hibiscus and rose tea for this recipe. Use the rest for another recipe.
Add ½ cup of rose hydrosol and gelatin to the mixing bowl of your stand mixer. Let the gelatin soften and bloom for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, add the hibiscus-rose tea and honey to a 2 quart saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Continue boiling until the honey reaches 240°F on a candy thermometer. Don’t leave the boiling honey unattended. If the honey boils up remove it from the heat and stir it until it stops bubbling up and then return it to the heat. The bubbling is the water from the tea evaporating from the honey mixture. Once the syrup reaches 225°F you can turn up the stove a little to speed the process. Once the syrup reaches 240°F, the soft ball stage, remove it from the heat.
Trickle the hot syrup into the softened gelatin mixture while beating the syrup-gelatin mixture on low, being careful not to splash yourself with hot syrup. Add the salt, vanilla extract, and rose water.
Turn the mixer on high and beat for 10 minutes until the mixture is glossy and has the consistency of thick marshmallow cream. When it’s ready a line of marshmallow cream will remain on the surface of the marshmallow without sinking back in. A trickle of marshmallow cream will fall very slowly off a spatula into the bowl, making a long ropey string of marshmallow. You don’t want stiff peaks.
Turn off the mixer. Transfer the marshmallow cream to the prepared pan. Smooth the top. Dust with more tapioca starch.
Allow the pan to sit at room temperature to set for 4 hours or overnight.
Dust the cutting board with tapioca starch. Flip the marshmallows onto the cutting board and cut with a buttered and starch-floured very sharp chef’s knife.
Remove the misshapen sides of the marshmallow block, so that the block has clean edges all around. Slice these removed sides into ½ inch mini-marshmallows.
Now cut the large block into 6 strips. Dust the cut edges with more starch as you work. Periodically clean and dust the knife with more tapioca starch. Slice with a straight cut. Don’t saw the block back and forth. Cut each strip into 6 marshmallows, rolling each one in the tapioca starch to keep them from sticking together.
Place the marshmallows on a rack or a plate and let them air for 2 to 4 hours. This will seal the edges and keep them from sticking together.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature. Don’t refrigerate or freeze these marshmallows. They are best stored at room temperature or above 50°F. (Shelf life: 3 weeks)