Recipes
Mouthwatering traditional Russian recipe turns apples into 'marshmallows'
You only need three ingredients to make it: apples, eggs, and sugar.
Cherie Gozon
09.07.21

Have you heard of pastila?

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

This is a historic Russian recipe that transforms apples into marshmallows. It consists of only three recipes, but there’s more to it than just those three because it involves specific techniques.

Pastila comes from the Slavic word pasta, which means bed.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Nowhere near apples or marshmallows, but it was named as such because pastila were used to be baked in wooden frames – much like a bed.

One factor that you should note is which apples to use.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Traditionally, this recipe uses the Antonov variety of apples, but you can’t find this in your local supermarket. You can replace this with some Granny Smith apples because it is just as tart. But the main reason why you use this kind of apple for the pastila is the pectin in it. Pectin helps give that gummy texture like that of a marshmallow.

You only need three ingredients to make a pastila: apples, eggs, and sugar.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

First, place six apples in a pan and fill the pan with water around a quarter of an inch. Bake the apples for an hour at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. It will come out as very soggy, and that’s fine. Sift the apple using a sieve so you’ll have something like applesauce.

Next, get two eggs and separate the whites from the yolk.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Beat the eggs using a stand-up mixer, along with the apples and sugar, for ten minutes. The result will come out as something like a meringue.

Get two 9×12 pans and line them with parchment, including the edges.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Separate 1 ½ cup of this cream, which you’ll use later. Pour the rest of them evenly in the pan and spread them out evenly using an offset spatula. Preheat the oven and place the pans inside.

The baking time can be tricky, but Emmy noted what to watch out for.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Baking time can range from four to six hours, but the important thing here is to make sure it is firm enough for you to slice it into half but remains airy and light. That all depends on your judgment. Once it is baked that way, take them out of the oven and let it cool.

It’s time to assemble your pastila!

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Slice the pastila into two horizontal layers, and you’ll end up with four layers. Lay one on a pan and spread a thin layer of the meringue mixture. Top another layer and continue this process until you’ve topped it with the fourth layer.

You can spread the remaining meringue at the top and on its sides.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
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YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Place it back in a preheat oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and let it bake for 1 ½ hour. Once done, let it cool once again for the final touches.

Lastly, slice the pastila around an inch thick so they’ll look like fingers.

YouTube Screenshot|emmymade
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|emmymade

Sprinkle or coat it with powdered sugar to add some sweetness and get rid of the stickiness of the pastry. Your pastila is now ready to be served.

It’s a long process, but it’s definitely worth it!

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By Cherie Gozon
hi@sbly.com
Cherie Gozon is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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