Campfire in a cup

// Tarquin Melnyk
// Tarquin Melnyk

In my experience as a bartender, any idea worth doing is generally made better with the addition of your favourite spirits.

Dylan Williams, my partner on the bar at Bambudda, perfected the from-scratch marshmallow recipe below. It’s goes with a drink we serve called a campfire gin and tonic—made with Stump alpine gin, Black Moon smoked rosemary gin, our house rosemary tonic, fresh lemon, and Ms. Better’s tonic bitters.

Boozy marshmallows


1/2 cup cold water

3 (1/4 oz.) packets Knox unflavoured gelatin

2 cups granulated sugar

3/4 cup corn syrup

1/6 cup of water

1/6 cup of spirit of choice (At Bambudda we alternately use gin, rum, and tequila)

Dash  of bitters

Pinch of salt

2 tablespoons finely minced herbs

Powdered sugar, for dusting


Start by lining the bottom and sides of a deep baking dish with plastic wrap, and then butter the plastic wrap. If you are looking for thick marshmallows, an eight-inch square dish or pan works well.

Then add a half cup cold water into a large bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over the water and let it stand until fully dissolved, or about five minutes.

In a separate saucepan, add the sugar, corn syrup, remaining water, spirits, bitters, and herbs. Heat the mixture over a medium to high heat until it boils.

Then immediately add the sugar mixture to dissolved gelatin in bowl and beat on high-speed for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the mixture turns fluffy and solid white. We recommend a stainless steel stand mixer for this job.

Now pour the mixture into the prepared pan and spread into an even layer using a buttered offset spatula. Allow the mixture to set at room temperature for at least two hours.

Then dust a cutting board with powdered sugar. Put the marshmallow slab onto the cutting board and lightly dust the surface with powdered sugar. Butter a sharp knife and cut the slab into cubes; repeat buttering as needed to cut all the marshmallows.

Now it’s time to work on your char game. We use a hand-held mini crème brule butane torch to get the perfect finish.

There you go. Easy. V

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