In this recipe, extra-thick marshmallows are topped with a banana slice, smothered in chocolate, sprinkled with peanuts, and topped with a maraschino cherry. Oh, that cherry! There’s just something about maraschino cherries that make desserts (and drinks!) look equal parts cute and charming. But even though these souped up marshmallows look like sort of a big deal, they’re pretty easy to assemble. And I was pleasantly surprised by how cooperative the cherries were when I placed each on top—barely any tipping! Lucky for us, maraschino cherries know their mission and they’re here to get it accomplished.
- 4 packages unflavored gelatin
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 package dark chocolate chips
- 3 bananas
- 1 cup crushed peanuts
- 24 maraschino cherries,
- Cooking spray
Line the inside of the pan with tin foil, then coat well with cooking spray. In a large mixing bowl, combine 3/4 cups of cold water with the packets of gelatin and allow to sit until gelatin forms, about 15 minutes.
In a medium saucepan on medium heat, combine the sugar and 3/4 cup of water, then stir until sugar has dissolved—about 3 to 5 minutes. Increase heat to bring mixture to a low boil, and continue to boil until the temperature reaches 240ºF on a candy thermometer—about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat.
Slowly pour sugar mixture into the bowl with the gelatin, simultaneously using a mixer on low. Gradually increase speed to high and continue whipping until the mix is very thick, about 10 to 15 minutes—imagine the consistency of pourable taffy.
Pour the mixture into the pan, smoothing the surface with a spatula. (Spray spatula with cooking spray as needed to keep it from sticking.) Let the marshmallow sit for about 3 to 4 hours, uncovered, until completely set.
Cover a surface larger than the marshmallow slab with powdered sugar and carefully remove the marshmallow slab from the pan and place on the covered surface. Cut marshmallows into 1-1/2-inch squares. Dust all sides of marshmallow pieces with powdered sugar.
Place marshmallows on a cookie cooling rack that’s sitting on top of a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Melt chocolate. Drain cherries from syrup and pat them dry with paper towels. Working with 5 to 8 marshmallows at a time, place a slice of banana on each, spoon chocolate on top, sprinkle with crushed peanuts, and top with a cherry. (You can dip the bottom of the cherries in a bit of chocolate if you’re having a tough time getting them to stick.) Once you’ve topped the marshmallows, refrigerate uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes until chocolate hardens. You might need to use a knife to slice bits of chocolate at the base of the marshmallows that dripped through the cooling rack, in order to free them.