Marshmallow creme is a semi-liquid marshmallow confection sold in jars in most grocery stores. It is made with many of the same ingredients as traditional marshmallows, although in different quantities to produce a less solid texture. Its spreadable consistency makes it ideal for a variety of dessert applications, and since it is essentially a marshmallow with extra moisture, it reacts to heat just like you would expect, producing a golden-brown toasted crust over a softened interior.
Toast marshmallow creme in the oven or broiler, or using a creme brûlée torch. A creme brûlée torch is a small propane torch designed to apply direct heat to a specific area, usually the sugar crust on a creme brûlée dessert. It gives you control over exactly where the fluff is toasted and how dark brown it gets. As soon as the fluff is the color you want it, simply remove the torch. Toasting marshmallow creme in the oven or broiler requires more patience than the torch method. Watch the marshmallow creme carefully. It can go from almost ready to burnt in a very short period of time.
When you apply heat to marshmallow creme, caramelization begins to occur. This is a series of chemical reactions that breaks down sugars, such as sucrose, or granulated sugar and corn syrup, the sweetener used in marshmallow creme, into simple sugars and other compounds. When caramelization occurs, the creme begins to turn brown, and you notice a toasty, nutty scent. When taken too far, caramelization progresses to burnt marshmallow creme.
Toasted marshmallow creme can replace toasted marshmallows in traditional campfire treats made indoors. Beyond simply substituting marshmallow creme for solid marshmallows, it makes a tasty topping for a variety of cream pies. Spread the marshmallow creme over the cream filling, then toast the marshmallow creme in the broiler or using a creme brûlée torch. The toasting process is fast enough that the pie filling will not cook while the marshmallow creme is toasting. Use marshmallow creme in place of meringue on baked Alaska for an extra-sweet dessert.
If you leave marshmallow creme under the broiler or use the creme brûlée torch, it can catch fire. Watch the marshmallow creme carefully and remove it from the broiler or under the torch when it becomes dark brown. If it begins to smoke, it will catch fire quickly. If you are using a creme brûlée torch, remove the torch and smother the fire with a damp towel. If the marshmallow creme catches fire in the broiler, remove it if you can do so safely, and smother the flame with a damp towel. If you cannot remove the creme without risking a burn, use a fire extinguisher to put out the fire.
When the marshmallow creme is a deep golden brown, the inner core can get hot enough to cause burns. Let the marshmallow creme sit for 2 or 3 minutes to cool before eating.
- Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images