Marshmallows are confectionaries made from sugar, starch, gelatin, and corn syrup. They are a big hit with children and adults alike. Originally from Egypt and considered a delicacy, marshmallows were made from the sap of the mallow plant, and since these plants grow in marshes, it has since been called marshmallows. From being handmade, the process turned mechanical using a starch mogul, where the molds were made from corn starch. This method was later replaced by the extrusion process where the marshmallows came out of an extruder machine. This is the current method of manufacture. Mallow sap was eventually replaced by gelatin, which was combined with sugar, corn starch and syrup to give the fluffy texture.
This yummy, fluffy candy was introduced in America in the 1900s and grew very popular in the 1950s. Today USA is the largest consumer of marshmallows, buying more than 90 million pounds per year !! Toasted marshmallows are very popular during Christmas time. In fact, the sales of marshmallows are maximum between October and December. During that time and the rest of the year too, they make their way into children's parties and holiday fun.
The kids are bored during school holidays and parents at their wits' end, get creative in keeping their children occupied! Who has not played with a marshmallow gun ?! As children, we made use of a plastic cup whose bottom was sawed off. A large balloon's rim was tied into a knot, which was your gun's trigger. The other end of the balloon was snipped off, and the edge of the small hole stretched over the bottom end of the cup to cover it. The cup with a marshmallow in it and a few in our pocket, we would head out for battle! Spying the first victim, I would aim the mouth of the cup at her, and pull back the balloon for a good stretch and let go! Wham! Hit! Delighted peals of laughter would follow …
One can get creative with these sorts of marshmallow shooters. The cups can be conveniently fashioned into snowmen, elves or other happy (or fierce) faces with colorful balloon caps! The striped and spotted balloons make better caps too.
The Marshmallow shooter kit
Now you get a DIY marshmallow shooter kit. This kit has a few pipes, elbows and end cap required to assemble a marshmallow shooter in a moment. It is so easy that a child can do it and use it to shoot marshmallows. The satisfaction of using something made by the child herself will add to the excitement of the game.
These are wonderful ideas for gifting or even an activity session for children. PVC ½ inch pipes can be cut to the different lengths. A minimum of two PVC elbows, one T (all ½ inch) and an end cap for each marshmallow gun, a blast of spray paint to jazz it up and the kids are all set to have their wars with marshmallow ammo!