Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Brown sugar and cinnamon meringues with praline cream

Brown sugar and cinnamon meringues with praline cream

I'll admit it: I can be quite stubborn sometimes. Some people say it’s because I’m a Scorpio and others will even call it “persistence”. What I know is that if something gets stuck in my head I won’t put it to rest until it’s done.

I was looking for a recipe with cinnamon - my favorite spice – and saw this. It was a huge coincidence, since there were 4 egg whites in the fridge. Off to the kitchen I went, excited about the beautiful dessert I was about to make.

It took me 3 times to get the meringues right – you know what they say about the third time, right? – and lots of eggs and brown sugar. After failing at the second attempt, it hit me: there was too much sugar for the amount of egg whites. It would never be firm. Finally, I made only ¼ of the recipe and added sugar to the egg whites my way. It worked. I shaped the meringues smaller than the original version – I used regular spoons for that; the recipe called for serving spoons – and reduced their time in the oven. On the following day, they were chewy and tasted good.

Would I go through all that trouble again for a dessert? Definitely. :)

I’m posting the adapted recipe - the one that worked out for me; follow the link mentioned above if you want to take a look at the original version.

Brown sugar and cinnamon meringues with praline cream

Brown sugar and cinnamon meringues with praline cream
adapted from Delicious magazine

4 large egg whites, at room temperature
100g light brown sugar, sifted
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
icing sugar, for dusting

Praline cream:
50g blanched, slivered almonds
50g granulated sugar
300ml double cream

Preheat the oven to 140ºC/285ºF. Line 2 large baking trays with non-stick baking paper.

Put the egg whites into a large, clean, grease-free bowl and beat to stiff peaks. Mix the sugar and cinnamon, then beat, a dessertspoonful at a time, into the whites until you have a stiff, glossy meringue.
Using 2 spoons, take a spoonful of the meringue onto 1 spoon. Holding the second spoon parallel to and behind it, scoop the mixture onto the second spoon by tucking its long edge under the back edge of the mixture on the front spoon. Do this 2-3 times until you have a smooth, rugby-ball shaped meringue. Transfer to one of the paper-lined trays. Repeat to make 12 meringues (in case you use large spoons to shape them) and transfer them one by one to the trays, leaving about 3-4cm between them. Bake in the oven for 1 ½ hours (I baked mine for 1 hour), then turn off the oven and leave them to cool inside for at least 4 hours, or overnight.

Meanwhile, make the praline: preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºC. Spread the almonds over a baking sheet and roast for 6-7 minutes until lightly golden. Remove and set aside. Put the sugar into a small heavy-based pan and cook over a medium heat, without stirring – just swirl the pan around - until the sugar has caramelized and turned to an amber brown syrup. Add the almonds, swirl the pan to coat in the caramel, then quickly pour the mixture onto a lightly oiled baking tray and cool. Break into pieces when cold and transfer to a food processor. Process to fine crumbs using the pulse button, but don’t let the mixture become extremely fine.

To serve, whip the cream to soft peaks, then stir in the praline. Use to sandwich the meringues together. Lightly dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.

Serves 6

Brown sugar and cinnamon meringues with praline cream


Anonymous said...

Oh Patricia... this tops it all. What a fantastic looking photo and recipe!

LyB said...

I can certainly understand your "persistence", that looks like a wonderful dessert! I've never used brown sugar to make meringues, it sounds delicious!

Brilynn said...

You've been making such fantastic things lately, I'm sure to be drooling by the time I leave your site!

Silvia - Magnolia Wedding Planner said...

Your posts are always better my dear! What a wonderful recipe.
They look so delicious.
And keep on with your persistence..it's a winning card in life

Sarah said...

Wow. Seriously? This is one of the tastiest looking desserts I have seen in a long time.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Cinnamon & brown sugar - I'm there! And these are just a perfect bite!

Deborah said...

I often have to make things more than once to get them right - but it's all worth it in the end! These sound fantastic!

My Sweet & Saucy said...

I love these! I especially like the addition on the praline cream...yummy!

Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul said...

Meringues are tricky at the best of times...so many factors that need to be right in order to succeed. But its good you didn't give up. You made a wonderful sweet treat Patricia after all that "persistence".

Anonymous said...

As if these didn't look wonderful enough, the praline cream sends them over the top. Yum!

lululu said...

Yummm...it's such a lovely recipe. I would really love to pop some into my mouth now!

Peter M said...

OK, these are worthy enough to skip dinner!

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

Yum! I have some wonderful cinnamon that a friend brought back from Vietnam -- it's hot and spicy, and would be perfect for this dessert. Now I just have to convince my husband, the resident baker, to make it for me!

Helene said...

Marcela just brought me cannela that I have been dying to use...Great choice!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

I'm all over anything that has "cinnamon and brown sugar" in the title. And they're just precious on top of it all!

Cookie baker Lynn said...

I love those happy coincidences that give you 4 egg whites just when you find the recipe that you want to try that calls for them. Good job persevering with the recipe to get it right!

Gigi said...

I'm glad you didn't give up because the meringues are drool worthy!

Anonymous said...

I've also discovered that "my way" sometimes works better, now if only we could get there quicker! I like the addition of brown sugar.

Nic said...

I love meringues and yours look delicious. The cream is extra special!

Anonymous said...

You've just included two of my favourite things: brown sugar and praline *drools*

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I think cinnamon and meringue would be a wonderful combination - you should also try cinnamon ice cream. I was in heaven!

Anonymous said...

The extra work is almost always worth it, if you ask me. There are some recipes that I had to make 5, 6 times to finally perfect, and the results were so good that I don't regret taking the time and ingredients to do so. :)

Anonymous said...

What can I say?
I printed this off in a flash!
Thanks for posting

Anonymous said...

I relate to your "persistence" in the kitchen, Patricia -- these meringues are beautiful. I'll bet the contrast of meringue cookie next to the softly whipped cream is delicious!!

Julie said...

hose actually look and sound quite delicious, I would love to try them.

Anonymous said...

Yup, three's a charm. :) I must admit that the last time I made meringues was over a decade ago and I stopped trying because it always comes out as a flop. I think I'll give it a try again. These meringues look so good to pass up the opp!

As always...you continue to inspire, Patricia!

Kelly-Jane said...

Your persistance paid off beautifuly! Yum.

Abitofafoodie said...

Oooh - wow! These look absolutely wonderful. What an unusual recipe - I have never seen meringues that gorgeous colour before. I bet they were delicious, especially with that praline cream. Your persistence certainly did pay off.

kellypea said...

Mmmm...cinnamon and brown sugar. A favorite flavor combo. I admire your persistence. Clearly, it paid off! What a lovely dessert. I need to get on the ball and give meringues a try!

Rita Sella said...

ooh...yumm... my girls gonna love that. it's to be persistent, right ?

ChichaJo said...

This looks like such an elegant dessert to serve guests...or eat just the two of you! :)

Anonymous said...

These are really fantastic looking. And cute and yummy!

RecipeGirl said...

Ha! I'm a fellow stubborn Scorpio. And a stubborn Swede at that. Don't pick a fight with me... you won't win!

Anyway, cinnamon is also my fave spice. These look YUM!

Anonymous said...

This is just too good, delicious!
Made meringue with dark brown sugar and it was very good.

Peabody said...

Way to not give up. I don't think I have had meringues made with brown sugar...I want to.

Manggy said...

This is quite unique! I've not made meringues with brown sugar before, either! :)

Patricia Scarpin said...

Kristen, thank you, darling!

LyB, it was my first time making meringues! Tricky little things. :)

Bri, thank you, dear - that means a lot, coming from you!

Silvia, thank you for all your support!

Sarah, it's pretty unusual, isn't it?

Tanna, you should feel the smell of these. :)

Deb, it's part of the love for cooking, right?

Melody, the ones you made were beautiful!

Pete, tricky indeed!

Sandie, tks for stopping by!

Lu, I'm sure you would!

Pete, I agree!

Lydia, that sounds like a wonderful cinnamon, my friend. :)

Helen, make Marce proud with this. :)

Susan, thank you!

Lynn, I felt it was a sign or something, like I had to make these. :)

Gigi, thank you, darling!

Ronell, it's nice to give our touch to the recipes sometimes. :)

Nic, thank you, dear!

Lorraine, make these! ;)

T.W., cinnamon and brown sugar are great together, indeed. :)

Hannah, it's worth it, you're right, sweetie!

Hi there! Tks for your visit!

Amy, the praline is so yummy. :)

Julie, thank you!

Joy, you are far too kind, my friend, thank you very much!
And meringues can be quite tricky, can't they?

Kelly-Jane, thank you!

Antonia, I thought this was very unusual, too!

Kelly, you should!

Rita, right!

Joey, I'm glad you like it!

Cathy, thank you, sweetie!

Hi there, my fellow Scorpio! :) Good to know there's someone like me reading the blog. ;)

Linda, thank you!
I'm sure yours looked a lot better than mine. ;)

Pea, these are good, my friend.

Mark, these were completely new to me too!

Anonymous said...

Wow, wow and wow. They look amazing.

Clumbsy Cookie said...

And aren't you glad you're a stubborn scorpio? That got you these great looking treats! Well done Patricia! Adoro canela também! Rita

Jaime said...

patricia, can i move in with you? :) i swear you make everything that i love!!!

Anonymous said...

It was extremely interesting for me to read this blog. Thank you for it. I like such topics and everything that is connected to this matter. I definitely want to read a bit more soon.

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