Many Americans can recall a memory from their childhood days when they sat by a campfire with friends or family roasting marshmallows on sticks or skewers. Sweet delight! Every year on the 30th of August NATIONAL MARSHMALLOW TOASTING DAY is a chance to re-live those memories, or experience them for the first time. So what is all the hoopla about?
Though enthusiastically adopted by Americans in the early 1900s marshmallows have a 2000 year old history dating to the Egyptians. Their origin was the sweet sap from the mallow plant root which grows in marshes, hence the name. Modern day marshmallows are of course just as sweet and soft due to the mix of sugar with water, egg whites and gelatin, coated with corn starch at the end. Below we give you a recipe to try out for yourselves!
These sweet puffy little clouds called marshmallows are not any longer considered as delicacies of the Egyptian gods and pharaohs but have become an ultra-popular American fare for camping trips, summer get-togethers, camp fires and summer desserts. We find them mostly in picnics and barbecues where we eat outdoors and usually roast or melt them but they are also a good choice for mixing with chocolate. It´s good to bear in mind however that these seemingly harmless and fat-free little puffs are very caloric due to their sugar content and contain 318 calories per 100 grams. They also come in many varieties including but not limited to such oddities as bacon marshmallows; vanilla marshmallows; chocolate marshmallows; marbled marshmallows; marshmallow Frankenstein heads; peppermint marshmallows; pumpkin-spice marshmallows, and many more!
Although seemingly offenceless and even frivolous, the marshmallow has come to symbolize traits such as willpower, grit and temptation in the American psyche due to the test devised by Stanford University professor, Walter Mischel, around 1970 to measure delayed gratification. The experiment, appropriately called the “Stanford Marshmallow Experiment” measured a child´s self-control by presenting him with one marshmallow to eat immediately or two marshmallows if he could wait for approximately 15 minutes. The experiment became very famous when the results showed that the children with patience were later more successful in life.
Finally the marshmallow has the inherent qualities of all good picnic foods which need to stay fresh and be easy to eat with the fingers, either cold or roasted. Here is our choice for an easy and special Chocolate Marshmallow recipe, great for serving on NATIONAL MARSHMALLOW TOASTING DAY to celebrate summer coming to a close with your family or friends.