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Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows Recipe
by Cristina

Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows – Marshmallow Madness!

I was at a “foodie-type” function a couple of years ago when one of the attendees brought out homemade marshmallows to share with everyone. Homemade marshmallows…who would’ve thought? Wow. What a difference homemade mallows made in both texture and flavor. I enjoyed it so much more than I normally would with regards to marshmallows. Truth-be-told, the only time I buy marshmallows are for Krispy treats (which I haven’t made in ages) and the romantic notion of marshmallows in hot chocolate when we’ve headed to Yosemite.

A couple of months ago, I was invited by Quirk Books and the Serious Eats community to participate in the kick-off release of Shauna Sever’s new puffalicious cookbook, Marshmallow Madness! (release date February 28, 2012). There are four brackets (West Coast, Southwest, East Coast and Southeast), four bloggers per bracket for a total of 16 food blogs that will each craft a unique marshmallow using Shauna’s original Classic Vanilla Marshmallow recipe. The participating blogs are being referred to as The Sweet Sixteen of Food Blogs.

We were all sent advanced copies of the book to get a start on our creations and get a good feel for the method of marshmallow confection making.

The book does a good job clearly explaining the method and process for successful marshmallow creation with invaluable references and reads about the key ingredients, tools, basic steps (the bloom, the syrup and mallowing), storage and troubleshooting tips. There are plenty of gorgeous supporting photographs to inspire you with different flavors, shapes and uses for these gooey candy treats. Recipes and ideas are organized by:

The Classics

Fresh and Fruity

Happy Hour (cocktail-inspired)

Gourmet flavors and textures

Fun flavors for kids

Crafty ideas

Sticky, gooey treats made with mallow

Plus there are additional variation suggestions and complimentary marshmallow recipes (like homemade graham crackers) to get you started with homemade, memorable mallows.

I’m especially interested in making the Marshmallow Crème next. The possibilities of homemade marshmallow fluff can be endless!

Don’t forget to read towards the end for opportunities to win your own copy of Marshmallow Madness! from fellow Sweet Sixteen Flood Blog participants.

First Time Doesn’t Count!

For my first batch of homemade marshmallows, I used the Classic Vanilla recipe and kicked it up a notch by adding a vanilla bean to the mallow. While the flavor turned out tasty, I over whipped the batter and couldn’t work the batter quick enough to get it to spread smoothly in the pan. Shauna explains the outcomes of under whipped and over beaten batter well, so I knew where I went wrong. The second time was a charm…

Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows!

Chai spices and my morning homemade lattes are flavor comforts to me. I designed a chai-spice blend (not chai from tea) for these marshmallows that I’m rather proud of. The thing about the flavors of chai is that it’s one of those flavors that’s a preference as to how spicy or mild you enjoy it. To offset some of the sweetness and allow the chai to come through, I added a salty, flavorful element to it by rolling the marshmallow in pistachios to create a textured crust.

The sweet, salty and spicy combinations made for an elegant, grown-up (if you will), type of flavor meld for this confection. The texture of homemade marshmallows is a welcoming change to what I’ve been familiar with from packaged varieties. I had a fun time learning about its process and dabbling in the world of candymaking!

Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows

Notice the specks of spicy spice-blend on the marshmallow.

The recipe below is an adaption of the original Classic Vanilla Marshmallow recipe from the book, with modifications for my Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows. The methods for the bloom, syrup and mallowing processes are written thoroughly in the book with needed additional references, notes and tips for successful results.

After prepping the pan with non-stick spray, distribute divided pistachios on the bottom of the pan.

While the syrup is being beaten on medium-high and it’s highest settings during the mallowing process, whisk together the dry spices (cardamom, Saigon cinnamon, cloves and white pepper), so that they’re ready to add to the nearly completed marshmallow batter with the vanilla extract.

You don’t need to use Classic Coating for this marshmallow variation. The pistachios are used instead.

If you opt for not using pistachios, use 1/2 cup of the Classic Coating with 1 1/2 – 2 teaspoon or so of the Saigon cinnamon whisked in.

Used small round biscuit cutters for the shape and mini-cupcake paper liners for presentation.

Note: You will need the Marshmallow Madness! book to work through the method. I don’t go into detail of what the bloom, the syrup and the mallowing are.

Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows


The Bloom


Lightly coat an 8 x 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

Evenly spread about 1/2-3/4 cup of prepared pistachios on the bottom of the pan.

Follow the method for the Classic Vanilla Marshmallows, page 16 from Marshmallow Madness!.

The last 1-2 minutes when you’re beating the syrup on your mixer’s highest setting and adding the vanilla extract, ALSO add the cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and white pepper.

After the marshmallows have set and you’ve removed it from the pan, use preferred cutters or cut into squares. Place remainder of the pistachios in a shallow plate/bowl and gently roll each marshmallow’s sides to coat with pistachios.

Store and handle completed marshmallows as suggested in the Marshmallow Madness! book.

Special shout-out and thank you to Eric of Quirk Books and Shauna Sever.

Win Your Own Copy of Marshmallow Madness!

Some participants in The Sweet Sixteen of Food Blogs are having giveaways for this fun book:

Brandon of Kitchen Konfidence is giving away three copies. Hurry! His deadline is 11:59PM PST on Sunday, February 26, 2012. Be sure to check out his gorgeous Maple Bacon S’mores (with a recipe for graham crackers too)!

Barbara of Barbara Bakes is giving away two copies. Deadline is Friday, March 16th MST! You will love her Lucky Charm Marshmallows that are made in pretty colors and shapes. :)

Shawnda of Confections of a Foodie Bride is giving away a copy – ends March 2, 2012 at 11:59 CST. She’s created a gorgeous marshmallow infused with dulce de leche that’s sandwiched as an Alfajore Moon Pie!

Chai-Spiced, Pistachio Marshmallows

A closer look at the specks of spicy chai spices in combination with the salty pistachios.

On another note: I created a newer profile on LinkedIn more related to my food photography and the Teenie Cakes site. If you’re already following me through other social media means or would like to start…please either send me a message through my contact form or send me a DM (direct message) through Twitter with details of how I can find you on LinkedIn so we can “connect” there too! :)

Disclosure: I received an advance copy of the cookbook “Marshmallow Madness!” from the Publisher, Quirk Books. I am under no obligation to write a review of the cookbook and its authors OR write a favorable review of the cookbook and its authors. My experiences and opinions of the book are my own and receiving a copy has not created a bias on my review.

© 2008-2012 Cristina A-Moore. All Rights Reserved: Text, photos & content.