When life throws you egg whites, make sweet meringue kisses

My favourite way of using egg white leftovers – meringue kisses!

Ingredients:

4 large eggs (egg whites) at room temperature

115g icing sugar

115g caster sugar

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven at 100C for a fan oven or 110C for a conventional
  2. Line two baking trays with a non-stick liner or parchment paper
  3. Beat the egg whites on medium speed with an electric mixer until the mixture stands up in stiff peaks when the blades are lifted
  4. Turning the speed up, add thecaster sugar, a dessert spoonful at a time beating for 3-4 seconds between each addition. By adding the sugar slowly at this stage we prevent the meringue weeping later on.

Don’t over-beat it! The mixture should be thick and glossy.

  1. Gently fold one third of the icing sugar at the time over the mixture with a rubber spatula until you obtain a smooth and bouncing mixture.
  2. Using a dessert spoon scoop the mixture and drop it in rough rounds into the lined baking tray, allow room to grow by leaving a gap between them. Alternatively you can use a pipping bag. Bake it for 1h 30min-1h 45min in a fan oven, 1h 15 min in a conventional or gas oven, until the meringues sound crisp when tapped underneath.
  3. Leave to cool on the trays or a cooling rack. (The meringues will now keep in an airtight tin for up to 2 weeks, or frozen for a month.)

DSC_1205     suspiro

Fabulous variations of the recipe:

  • Raspberry meringues: reduce 75g of raspberries to a purée; Drizzle each meringue with 1 teaspoon of the raspberry purée and then, using a fine skewer or toothpick, swirl the purée through the surface of each meringue. If you fold all into the meringue mixture it will collapse! For striated meringues do not swirl for too long, but if you wish a solid colour then you can swirl until you have the colour you desire.
  • Coloured meringues: use food colouring; Drop 3 teaspoons of food colouring into mixture for a solid colour or 1/2 teaspoon into the meringue and gently swirl to create a marbled effect
  • Using fruit coulis: drizzle each meringue with 1/2 teaspoon of coulis and swirl it into the meringue – divine with the passion fruit coulis

DSC_1196

DSC_1197   DSC_1200

  • Cream & chocolate meringues: melt 100g of dark chocolate in a glass bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Carefully dip the base of each meringue in to coat it, then place on their sides on a tray and leave it to set. While the chocolate sets, whip 300ml of double cream. Assemble the meringues in pairs and sandwich their chocolate bases together with a good blob of cream. Finally dust them with cocoa powder
  • Chocolate meringues:  drizzle each meringue with 1/2 teaspoon of chocolate and swirl it into the meringue; you can also add small pieces of chocolate
  • Nutty meringues: melt 100g of white chocolate in a glass bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Carefully dip the base of each meringue in to coat, then dip them into the previously chopped nuts- place on their sides on a tray to set. Swirled raspberry meringues with pistachio are scrumptious and do look really cute! You can also do this for strawberry meringues but using dark chocolate and desiccated coconut.

Tips:

  • small kiss meringues make really cute gifts- a transparent box with a lovely bow and small meringues inside
  • for Christmas use white melted chocolate and crushed peppermint cane to dip your meringues
  • you can ‘sandwich’ two meringues with lemon curd – make one tray of flat meringues and other of ‘spiky’ ones and assemble them with a spoonful of lemon curd
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