Aww, look at them. Aren’t they cute? A bunch of little pink marshmallow bunnies. After I shared this photo of them last week from Caroline’s birthday party, a lot of you asked for a tutorial on how to make them. I suppose I should have expected that.
Well, here’s the deal. Looks can be deceiving. Yes, these are very cute, but I want to tell you up front that they are a bit challenging to make. You can do it – if I did, you can to. I just want to be clear so you know what you’re getting into. You might get frustrated and you might need to make another batch. Both of these things happened to me. But I’m hoping that these step-by-step photos and tips will help you be successful. After all, they really are adorable and kind of worth it.
Yield: about 12 bunnies
- 1 packet (2½ tsp.) unflavored gelatin
- 1/3 cup cold water, plus ¼ cup water for the sugar syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- Colored sugar for coating
- Black royal icing
It will help you to have all your ingredients and equipment set up before you start. Prepare two piping bags with round tips, one about 1-inch in diameter and one about ½-inch in diameter. Put 1/3 cup of the water in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the top so that it softens. Fit the mixer with a whisk attachment.
Quick side note – you don’t have to buy special sanding sugar. Just use regular granulated sugar, add a drop or two of gel coloring, and mix in until evenly colored. Adjust as needed with additional color.
Coat the bottom of a rimmed plate or baking sheet with a thin layer of sugar, and have more available in a bowl. Also have a small bowl of water nearby (not pictured here).
Combine the sugar and ¼ cup of the water in a small saucepan with a candy thermometer clipped to the side. Heat over medium-high heat.
If the liquid level doesn’t go high enough on your thermometer, make sure you tilt the pan occasionally to fully submerge the thermometer and obtain an accurate reading. When the mixture reaches 238˚ F, immediately remove the pan from the heat.
With the mixer on low speed, drizzle the syrup mixture into the bowl with the gelatin. Once it is fully incorporated, increase the mixer speed to medium-high. Whip until stiff peaks form. Immediately transfer the marshmallow mixture to the prepared pastry bags.
Use the large piping bag to make about 12 small rounds of marshmallow on the layer of sugar (about 1½-2 inches in diameter.) Now, this is where you need to be speedy. The marshmallow mixture can start to set, so do all of the piping as fast as you possibly can. However, if you get to the point where you can tell it is starting to set, I found that using a blowdryer set on low heat to gently rewarm the mixture in the bag and get a little more mileage out of it.)
Use the smaller piping bag to make a circle for the head and one on the opposite side for the tail. They probably won’t look pretty right now – it’s okay.
Now use the smaller bag of marshmallow to add two ear shapes to each bunny head. Dip your finger in a bit of water and use it to gently smooth any peaked edges or uneven areas. (Don’t spend too much time getting this perfect. Once the marshmallows are coated in sugar, you’ll be able to massage them a bit more to correct any shape issues.)
Now we cover them with the sugar. Pour some of it over the top and then, gently holding onto the parts that are already covered in sugar, dip the other sides until the entire thing has an even layer of sugar over the top.
Then just use a little bit of black royal icing to make eyes and noses. Bunnies!!!