Monday, April 25, 2016

First Annual Marshmallow Roasting World Championship

The summer season is nearly upon us, which means it's time to practice up for roasting marshmallows.  We covered the theoretical aspects of marshmallow roasting last summer, but we thought it would be fun to host a friendly competition among our readership.  Coincidentally, we conceived of this notion while initiating the 2016 marshmallow roasting season on a perfectly idyllic Sunday evening, yesterday, in our yard.  So, we hereby announce the start of the first annual Homestead Laboratory Marshmallow Roasting World Championship!

Here's how it works: roast a marshmallow, take a picture of it, and upload it to our Facebook page as a comment under the marshmallow competition post.  Add a caption to provide some context, if you like. (People love stories!)  While you're there, give a like to other uploaded photos that are pleasing to your senses, and eventually, the most-liked marshmallow photo will rise to the top.  (You can also vote on the pictures if you haven't uploaded anything.  Impartial judges are important, too!) There are only a couple of rules: 1. if it catches on fire, that marshmallow is disqualified (you can eat it and try again!), and 2. no performance enhancing substances, like brown magic markers.

The competition runs through the end of September, and the prize for the top-ranked photo will be a fun and colorful homesteading book (title to be determined).

Entry into the competition is easy, but it combines a surprisingly complex skill set: marshmallow roasting (obviously), roasting fire construction, roasting stick selection (and possibly carving), and marshmallow photography, probably in sub-optimal lighting.  Yes indeed, the winner will be a truly talented individual.  Let's take a look at some of the early entries!

Melty roasted marshmallow
Jake's got things started here with an evenly-colored, good-looking specimen.  It's clearly going to be delicious, but the 'mallow looks a little sad and saggy on the stick.  The inside is nice and melty, too, which we know makes a top-notch s'more, but it's going to cost him some points in the photography department.  Yep, he should have held the stick horizontal for the photo, but he's in first place for now.

Roasting marshmallow from afar
What's this? It looks like the first challenger is entering the contest!  It's Katie, who has selected a nice cherry-wood stick and is slowly roasting her 'mallow rotisserie-style.  Let's move in for a closer look!

Roasting marshmallow close up
She's off to a good start; that's some nice caramelized color she's got going there on the left side.  If she can keep this performance up through the finish, she's got a good chance of taking over first place.

Roasted marshmallow on stick
Look at that!  An evenly-toasted, well-structured marshmallow to make your mouth water, and a pretty good shot to capture it.  It should be good enough to...yes, it looks like the judges have confirmed.  At the end of day one, first place belongs to Katie, with Jake a distance second.  Many other challengers are sure to follow, so she'll have to be on her toes and continue honing her technique if she wants to take home the prize this fall.

Well, what are you waiting for?  Go get yourself some marshmallows and start training!


  1. Hmm. I wonder how difficult it would be to make homemade marshmallows(?) Just to add to the fun.

    1. Definitely bonus points for homemade marshmallows! Even better if you start with actual marsh mallow root!

    2. You know, I think I even have a recipe somewhere. But where???????