I have a cup of egg whites in my refrigerator taunting me to do something with them. I have these whites because Son made me a Parisien flan before he left for his job in Alaska. I showed him this Parisien Flan from Nadia at Maison Travers and he made it for me! It was fabulous!
I’m thinking about a … (French word, meringue cake), it’ll come to me in a moment…Pavlova…Dacquoise! I describe this to Hubby and he looks at me with a blank face. I look through a few cookbooks for meringue recipes. Many of the recipes are for 2 egg whites with 2 cups of sugar, confectioners and granulated. That seems like a lot of sugar but sugar is important for the structure of a meringue. I have four egg whites so 2 cups of sugar will have to do. I suggest to Hubby that I could make espresso flavored meringue cookies and he says to go for it. I settle on adapting a recipe from Bakewise by Shirley Corriher. She explains the science behind the product. I do not have cream of tartar so must find a substitute: apparently 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice per egg white.
- 4 egg whites
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 3/4 cup superfine sugar; made by processing regular granulated sugar in the food processor for one minute
- 3/4 cup confectioners sugar (I didn’t have a full cup!)
- 1 tablespoon espresso powder
- 1 tablespoon Hersheys Special Dark Cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon flour
First I beat the egg whites and lemon juice with all but two tablespoons of the superfine sugar until stiff peaks formed.
Mix the rest of the dry ingredients to sprinkle on top of the beaten egg whites and fold in until incorporated. I confess that I do not like folding. I always worry about mixing too hard and flattening the mixture.
This is to be piped or spooned onto parchment paper and baked in a 200 degree (F) oven for 1 hour and 45 minutes. My oven is too small. I have three pans of meringue cookies and enough to make a nine inch circle for a Pavlova. I made this planning to dump a can of canned cherries mixed with sweetened yogurt on top and have a fancy dessert.
I don’t like my pastry bag so I just put huge spoonfuls on the pans. I don’t get marks for prettiness! These are baking away forever in the oven and I am on the phone with my sister when the timer goes off. I have never made meringues before, yes meringue topping for pies but not meringues. Smart phones are wonderful. I show her the meringues as I take them out of the oven and she says they look perfect. Now to let them cool. But wait, Hubby went in and took one off the tray. Yumm! They have a nice coffee flavor. Now I am not sure if cherries on top of the circle is the best flavor combination.
I still need to do something with the large circle. I serve wedges with ice cream and Hubby pours on a bit of Irish Cream liquor. Too much of this will make us fat and drunk!