With Easter upon us, and dad away for the week, it’s been pretty busy. So, I thought I would delay my planned attempts at cashew nut brittle and quick Turkish Delight (can’t wait for that one!) and do something quick and easy, and with an Easter twist. I came across a “recipe” for Fluffer Bunnies (on a Disney site called Spoonful) which are just white marshmallows cut and moulded with fingers into cute little bunnies. So simple, you can whip up a few in less than an hour.
Well, maybe you can, but I certainly could not.
I struggled with the instructions – simple as they appeared – I battled with the stickyness of the marshmallows (wouldn’t stick when I needed it to, stuck like crazy when I didn’t), with the molding of the ears and feet, with the correct places to cut… and the whole exercise took Ages! Without pictures I especially didn’t know quite what they meant with some of the cuts. And, honestly, the result was not worth the effort at all. So much simpler to simply sit back and enjoy the marshmallows, as is, straight from the packet.
But, I’ll share this here anyway, in the hope that someone else finds or knows the trick(s) to doing this, or points out my errors, or simply has a better, simpler bunny treat to share in response. Or is inspired to get this right, and then tell me all about it.
The step-by-step instructions (bold) are verbatim as given on Spoonful.com. The rest is my sad little bunny story.
Oh – for context, this is what I was aiming for (from Spoonful.com):
Red food colouring
1. Using scissors, make a diagonal cut in the upper left corner of the marshmallow.
This was my first problem. Marshmallows are round/ barrel shaped. They don’t have corners, and I’m still not sure which is the “upper left”. Looking at their end product I made the following cut:
As always, spraying the scissors with non-stick spray makes cutting marshmallows easier. Also, a single cut works best, rather than “scissoring” through the marshmallow.
2. Gently lift the corner and make a snip down the middle.
Moving past the “corner” issue, I lifted the flap I had created and snipped it like this (so far so good, I thought)
3. Use your fingers to separate the ears and angle them outward.
Here’s where I hit the next snag, quite an annoying big one. While I could separate them initially, and hold them apart, they would not stay apart or angled in any way. Right up until the end, their preferred position was back in the middle, stuck to each other and also stuck to the bunny’s “back”. My first three attempts were eaten at this point as the ears ‘disappeared’, broke off from manipulation, or no longer looked like ears at all from all the twisting and turning.
When it did sort of work, the ears looked like this – and would not stand any higher.
4. From the point where the first cut was made, snip to the middle of the marshmallow.
5. Pinch the cut end slightly to form a rounded tail.
I’ll be honest, I’m still not sure that I did what they mean here. Probably because I’m still not sure what they mean. Do you snip a slit from top to middle? Are you snipping something off? What does the cut end look like before you pinch it, and how is it pinchable? Their picture doesn’t show the tail from the side or behind, and it’s not apparent how or what they pinched. After a few misses (more eaten marshmallows) I went with this approach:
6. For the bunny’s face, make an 1/4-inch horizontal cut midway between the base of the ears and the bottom of the marshmallow.
Again, I’m not sure if a “cut” is just a slit/ split of the marshmallow, or if you’re supposed to cut part of the marshmallow off. I made the assumption that it is just a cut through the front of the marshmallow. And made the cut.
7. Create the feet by making a diagonal cut in the lower left corner of the marshmallow. Divide the feet as shown.
Here, they lost me completely. The first diagonal cut was for the ears and, with the flap, made sense. I don’t see how you make the feet and ears the same way. And here there is no mention of the flap. If you have a flap as a result of the cut, how does that become feet? Or do you cut the flap right off? What are you dividing? And as for the reference to “as shown”, well that doesn’t help with technique at all. I browsed around, and found an almost exact duplicate of this recipe on ehow.com which had a slight variation in this step:
Make a diagonal cut on the bottom of the marshmallow. Cut down the center of the flap. Form 2 front feet with the pieces.
This helps a little more and makes a little more sense, but didn’t produce the desired result as much as I’d hoped. Like the ears, the 2 parts of the flap kept sticking to each other once cut and didn’t look like 2 feet at all. The pieces also didn’t mould and stick very well to themselves, which gave unravelling “feet” down the length, and a sticky blob from the front. The only way that I could get an effect similar to that on the photo, was to cut a little square out of the front to make 2 distinct legs.
So, now – with much more effort than anticipated, and growing frustration – I had this:
If this picture looks a bit lacking in “bunnyness”, it’s because after ‘losing’ so many ears along the way, I started this particular bunny from the bottom up, doing the feet and face first. My hope was that doing the ears last would make them last longer. Didn’t really help that much though.
With all the cut features and moulded parts (over an hour of cutting and moulding!!) the bunny looked like this:
The only way I could get those ears to stay up was to break a little bit off another marshmallow, squish it to make it sticky and stick it in the middle just behind the ears, at the base. A bit like edible playdough/ prestik/ tickytacky.
8. Using a toothpick dipped in food coloring, draw on the eyes, nose, and whiskers
Ok, even I could do this part. Poured a little red food colouring into the lid of the bottle, dipped a toothpick in and drew 3 dots and 6 whiskers.
And finally – after almost 2 hours! – I had one marshmallow Easter Bunny:
With a Turkish Delight recipe that takes about 30-40 minutes, this little bunny “cost” me at least 2 batches of a much nicer treat.
Never again. I think I’ll stick to the science, not art….