After so many batches of custard based ice creams – there are recipes I’ve made three or four times – I had several egg whites left. I did freeze some but there were a couple of whites still in the fridge – that seemed like the perfect excuse to make meringues.
I’d bookmarked this recipe ages ago – I just love Delicious. magazine’s website – and it called for only 5 ingredients, all of them in my pantry/fridge... The perfect treat for those moments when you are feeling much too lazy/tired for a trip to the grocery store.
Very berry meringues
4 large egg whites, room temperature
225g caster sugar
75g mixed dried berries, coarsely chopped – I used dried cherries and cranberries
20g shelled unsalted pistachios, chopped
140ml double cream, to serve
Preheat the oven to 140ºC/284ºF. In a large, grease-free bowl, using an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually whisk in the caster sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you have a thick, glossy meringue. Using a large metal spoon, briefly fold in the mixed dried berries to evenly distribute through the meringue.
Line 2 baking trays with baking paper, fixing the paper in place with a tiny blob of meringue in each corner. Using 2 large metal spoons, take a spoonful of the meringue and scoop it from 1 spoon to the other to shape it into an oval ‘quenelle’ shape; alternatively, just dollop large, craggy spoonfuls of the meringue onto the baking sheets.
Drop onto the baking paper, then repeat to make 8 large meringues, spacing them 5cm (2in) apart as they will expand as they cook. Sprinkle with the chopped pistachios.
Bake the meringues in the oven for 1h15min for mallowy centers, or 1h30min for crisper meringues – swap the trays halfway to ensure even cooking. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues inside to dry out for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
To serve, transfer the meringues to serving plates. Whip the cream to soft peaks and serve a dollop with each berry meringue.
The cooked meringues will keep in an airtight box in a cool place for up to 4 days.
Serves 8 – I halved the recipe and got 5 large meringues