Raspberry Chocolate Mallow Bars
It wasn't long ago when I told you about my obsession with Marshmallow Fluff. I made it seem like I'm over it and it was just a childhood craving, but I'll let you in on a little secret: I still love the stuff. I haven't had it in years because one spoonful is probably enough to clog my arteries and do whatever else artificial sweeteners do to your body... but seriously, it's one of my weaknesses. So when my good friend Caitlin over at Foraged Dish suggested we get together for a baking afternoon, and then suggested we make marshmallows, how could I resist?!
The only real problem was that it's August, and making plain marshmallows just wouldn't be the same without having a mug of hot cocoa to plop them into. I actually considered saving them to take along on a camping trip this weekend, but then I thought of Mallow Bars, with inspiration from the genius Donna Hay.
And I was sold. I made a few tweaks to her recipe - using honey as liquid glucose, using canned raspberry jam and adding salt to the crust and vanilla to the marshmallow. The result was a decadent, delicious mallow bar with a gooey center, and the raspberry jam shines through more than you'd expect. Just look at those layers:
You know you want a bite.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup warm water, plus 1/2 cup extra
2 tablespoons (2 packets) gelatin powder
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cup high-quality honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup raspberry preserves
8 oz. dark chocolate
1 tablespoon butter
Preheat oven to 350 F. Place all crust ingredients in a medium bowl and mix to combine. Using your hands, press mixture into a greased 9x13 pan lined with greased parchment paper. Bake for 18 - 20 minutes until light golden brown. Set aside to cool.
While crust is cooling, make your marshmallow base. Place the 2/3 cup warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle over the gelatin and stir to combine. Set aside - it will slightly thicken and separate as it sits.
Place the sugar, honey and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan and cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar is dissolved. Add vanilla, increase the heat to high and bring mixture to a boil. Without stirring, cook for 7 minutes.
While it's cooking, spread your cooled crust with the jam, leaving 1/2 inch space around the edges.
Back to the marshmallow - with your stand mixer set on high speed, slowly pour the hot honey syrup into the gelatin mixture in a thin, steady stream. Beat for 8-10 minutes until you have a very thick and quite gooey mixture on your hands, just like marshmallow fluff. Quickly pour the mixture evenly over the jam layer. Refrigerate until firm, about one hour.
Place the chocolate and butter in a bowl and microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between each, until mixture is melted and smooth. Pour over the marshmallow layer, spreading evenly, and refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours.