my pajama party with the witches



I’ve had a pajama party every summer for the last fourteen years with Christie, Sheila and Di. It’s not easy to steal the time away from our families and work but we do. A tiny bit of time away from each of our very separate worlds to share stuff that no one else gets to know about or would want to know about for that matter. Worries, troubles, dreams and nonsense – all the stuff that clutters up our heads and needs to be cleaned out. We can go months without contact and pick up mid sentence!

And we do. Hours and hour of stream of consciousness discussion that needs fourteen years of archives to be able to follow. It’s an interesting dynamic that four so completely different women are able to communicate with each other in a way that is so helpful. I don’t pretend to understand what makes us click, we just do. At some point during the party, the discussion will change direction usually once the board games come out and all bets are off! Unbridled possibly pee your pants laughing takes over and leads us into the wee hours until we can’t keep our eyes open.

Their friendship has been a constant and precious joy in my life. I know how lucky I am.

They arrive today. I have enough food and drink to hold us through a forty day drought. Here’s a little treat we’ll have tonight…

HOMEMADE MARSHMALLOWS adapted from Ina Garten

3 packages unflavored gelatin
1 cup ice cold water
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
1 cup white corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Icing sugar
Non-stick spray

Place the gelatin into the bowl of a stand mixer along with 1/2 cup of the water.

In a small saucepan combine the remaining 1/2 cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt.
Place over medium high heat and allow to cook until sugar is dissolved.
Increase heat to medium high, clip a candy thermometer onto the side of the pot and continue to cook until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F.
Once the mixture reaches this temperature, remove from the heat.

Turn the mixer on low speed and, while running, slowly pour the sugar syrup into the gelatin mixture.
Once added, increase the speed to high.
Continue to whip until the mixture becomes very thick approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Add the vanilla during the last minute of whipping.

Place the icing sugar in a small bowl. Lightly spray a 9 by 9-inch metal baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Add the icing sugar to the pan and move around to completely coat the bottom and sides of the pan. Return the remaining icing sugar to the bowl for later use.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, using a spatula for spreading evenly into the pan.
Dust the top with icing sugar.
Allow the marshmallows to sit uncovered for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Cut into squares using a sharp knife dusted with the icing sugar.
Once cut, roll squares in icing sugar until well coated.
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

THE LOVE: Cutting the marshmallows is sticky work. Take your time and all will be well!

printable copy

one year ago: green beans and peppers in a warm grape tomato vinaigrette

two years ago: pancetta soaked potato with crispy sage

Thanks for reading.

  • Anonymous

    Save all the good stuff until I get there!

  • Anonymous

    No talking about anything good until you see my car pull up.I’m sure the Prosecco will be cold.Can’t wait!

  • Karol

    I found you when I was looking for a recipe. I saved your blog for the endearing stories and thoughts you put in your writing. I look forward to every new email. They make my day! So thank you and keep on sharing.

  • SOO LOVELY TO SEE FRIENDS GATHER I WISH I WAS ONE OF YOURS ENJOY WHILE YOU CAN THOSE DAYS NEVER COME BACK!!

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  • Having just experienced a microcosm of what I imagine your PJ Party with the Witches is, I can see how you would look forward to that every year. It revitalizes and leaves you energized to carry on for the ensuring year. Love abounds. You Witches are a lucky bunch to have each other!

    • Michelle

      And we so know it! xo