Walking on Clouds


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Photography by Alison Miksch

Recipe Development by Lilly Plauché

You might not imagine that something as simple as egg whites and sugar could transform into something as light, and delicious as a meringue. Try some dipped delicately into chocolate. Sprinkle one with fruit. Or, savor a slice of perfection in a Pavlovathat classic Australian dessert named for a Russian ballerina.  However you prefer this classic sweet, enjoying a meringue is like biting into a crisp cloud.

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Chocolate Dipped Meringue Cookies

Makes:  about 3 dozen cookies

 

4 large egg whites, at room temperature

⅛ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar

1 cup superfine sugar

1 tablespoon corn starch

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Cocoa powder, optional

 

  1. Preheat oven to 250F.
  2. Beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar with a mixer at medium high speed until thick and foamy. Gradually add superfine sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Increase speed to high and beat 5 minutes, until a glossy meringue forms. Sift corn starch over top of the meringue. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and fold to combine.
  3. Pipe meringue onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake 45 minutes-1 hour or until dried and can easily be removed from parchment. Turn oven off and let meringues continue to dry in oven 1 hour. Remove from oven to cool completely.
  4. Melt chocolate in a microwave safe bowl on high in 30 second intervals, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Dip bottoms of meringues into melted chocolate and place on parchment lined sheet. Let stand 30 minutes or until chocolate sets. Just before serving, dust with cocoa powder, if desired.

 

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Citrus Pavlova Cake

Serves: 6

 

4 large egg whites, at room temperature

⅛ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar

1 cup superfine sugar

1 ½ tablespoons corn starch

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract, divided

1 ½ cups heavy cream

¼ cup powdered sugar, plus more for dusting

1 cup citrus slices (orange, blood orange, or grapefruit)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 250F.
  2. Draw an 8 inch circle on a piece of parchment and place on baking sheet, flipping paper over so the drawn circle is on the bottom.
  3. Beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar with a mixer at medium high speed until thick and foamy. Gradually add superfine sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Increase speed to high and beat 5 minutes, until a glossy meringue forms. Sift corn starch over top of the meringue. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and fold to combine.
  4. Spoon meringue into the center of the 8 inch circle. Spread meringue to the edge of the circle, using a spatula to build up the sides of the meringue to 2 inches in height. The edge can be slightly taller than the center. Place in oven and bake 1 hour 30 minutes or until dry and the meringue lifts easily from parchment. Turn oven off at let stand in oven overnight or until completely cool.
  5. When ready to serve, whip cream, ½ teaspoon vanilla, and ¼ cup powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Place meringue on a plate or cake stand. Top with whipped cream and citrus slices. Dust with powdered sugar.

 

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Mini Pomegranate Pavlovas

Makes:  6 individual pavlovas

 

4 large egg whites, at room temperature

⅛ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar

1 cup superfine sugar

1 tablespoon corn starch

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract, divided

1 cup heavy cream

3 tablespoons powdered sugar

¾ cup pomegranate arils

Fresh mint leaves

 

  1. Preheat oven to 250F.
  2. Beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar with a mixer at medium high speed until thick and foamy. Gradually add superfine sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Increase speed to high and beat 5 minutes, until a glossy meringue forms. Sift corn starch over top of the meringue. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and fold to combine.
  3. Spoon meringue into 4-inch circles on parchment- lined baking sheets (you should have 6 meringues), leaving 2 inches of space between meringues. Use the back of a spoon to make a slight indentation in the center of each meringue. Place in oven and bake 1 hour or until dry and meringues easily remove from parchment. Turn oven off and leave meringues in oven for 1 hour. Remove from oven to cool completely.
  4. Just before serving, whip cream, ½ teaspoon vanilla, and powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Top meringues with whipped cream, pomegranate seeds, and mint.

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