Lush Life

To be a lush chef, does not mean to drink in excess - this can result in scary fires and bad dishes. A lush chef is one who enjoys gourmet cooking/baking, often with fresh ingredients and the smart use of one's home bar. If there happens to be half a bottle of beer, a glass of wine, or a sip of brandy left over...well, one cannot be wasteful. I give you permission to imbibe.

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Twitter: @thelushchef Provenance: Santa Monica Dish: Coq au Vin Spirit: Whiskey Wine: Malbec Beer: Hefeweizen Farmer's Market: Santa Monica on Main Street
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Mar 1, 2011

Chocolate & Pretzel-Covered Beer Marshmallows

Libations used: Just under 1/2 cup of beer
Libations left over: Half a bottle of beer

Beer, pretzels and chocolate are the ultimate St. Patty's day triumvirate, so when I saw these marshmallows on The Kitchn, I just had to try for myself. Note - I won't always be posting from this site - I just had a ton of back-logged recipes to try!

My first attempt at these marshmallows was an epic fail because I didn't have a candy thermometer. My "marshmallow" ended up having the consistency of rubbery taffy. I momentarily thought of using it as a non-stick pad for my laptop....or not. I went out the next day and bought a candy thermometer, which resulted in an epic success.

A note on preparation - you'll need to let a bottle of beer sit open overnight so it can go flat, or whisk the beer like crazy to release the carbon dioxide if you don't have time. The marshmallow takes a minimum of 10 hours to cure, so give yourself a couple of days to make this.

Chocolate & Pretzel-Covered Beer Marshmallows - Makes 18


For the Bloom:
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup flat dark beer - I used Stockyard Oatmeal Stout
For the Sugar Syrup:
  • 1/4 cup flat dark beer
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbs. corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • A pinch of salt
For Coating and Topping:
  • 10 ounces milk chocolate
  • 1/2 cup crushed pretzels
- Spray a 8.5"x 4.5" bread loaf pan with nonstick spray or rub with shortening.
- For the bloom, sprinkle gelatin in a bowl, pour the vanilla and beer over gelatin.
- Whisk until no lumps remain. I don't have a stand mixer, but my hand mixer works just fine - it's also better excercise!
- For the sugar syrup, combine beer, corn syrup, sugar and salt in a BIG saucepan (at least 4 quarts), because this stuff bubbles and foams like crazy.
- Turn the heat to medium-high and bring the sugar mixture to a boil.
- When the mixture is 225-230F, let it bubble for another 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Ideally, syrup should reach 240-250F - if it goes above this, you're going to result in that previously mentioned rubbery taffy...
- With the mixer on low speed, carefully pour the sugar syrup into the bloom.
- Turn mixer to high once all the syrup has been added, and whip it for 8-10 minutes. This should get all those bubbles out and give you a lovely meringue-like texture.
- Pour marshmallow into loaf pan and let it cure, uncovered, for 10-12 hours oor overnight.
- Drink the rest of the beer and congratulate yourself on having completed the first step...

...the Next Day:
- When the marshmallows are cured, rub the top with a little powdered sugar and turn the marshmallows out onto a cutting board.
- Rub the other side with more powdered sugar and cut into about 18 squares of equal size.
- Melt the chocolate over a double boiler or for 30 seconds at a time in the microwave, stirring frequently until all chocolate has melted.
- Coat each marshmallow entirely and set them on wax paper to dry.
- While chocolate is still wet, sprinkle tops of marshmallows with crushed pretzels.

These tasty treats will keep in a covered container for several weeks, but I doubt they'll last past St. Patrick's Day. I've already had two.