Help me! Christmas threw up on my meringues………
I have always disliked anything that involves egg whites. Simply because there are so many ways that they can fail.
Lately, I have been using them to decorate my cakes and I have found the road to meringue perfection.
First and foremost, make sure that you wipe every utensil (including the bowl and mixer) with white vinegar. This will remove any traces of fat that will cause the egg white to lose volume.
Here is a basic recipe from taste.com.au
My only addition is about ¼ teaspoon of cream of tartar. Cream of tartar is a by-product of wine making that is acidic and helps to stabilize egg whites. It also keeps them white and bright.
Slowly, I mean slowly, add the caster sugar a tablespoon full at a time. Whisk well between additions. Stop mixing once you put a dab in between your fingers, rub them together and you feel absolutely no graininess. Your meringue is now ready for piping
Here, I have used some simple tips, a plain piping nozzle for the kisses, a star nozzle for the roses and a large open star nozzle for the Christmas trees.
Place your piping bag (with the nozzle in it) in a tall glass and stripe it with gel food colour, as mentioned before I love Americolor gels. Then spoon the meringue into the bag. For the trees I used a combination of two greens.
I do love the effect of adding the green and red stripe to the little kisses.
A simple splatter of gold sugar or some glitter can really take your meringues up a festive notch.
You know your meringues are done when you can easily lift them off the baking paper. Close the oven door, turn it off and let meringues cool in there until completely cold. Letting them cool too quickly will lead to cracking.
You may also like to coat the bottoms with some melted white chocolate.
Store meringues in an airtight container. They will last about a week like this.
The Sw#@ring Baker.