Sunday, February 7, 2010

Meringues on a rainy day

     As much as I liked the idea of doing my own blog, my insecurities arise and I chickened out posting last week.  I'm not fabulous with a camera and have no give aways to draw people in.  I had to go back and reflect upon my reasoning for starting this blog. I'm in this to have fun and keep my creative juices motivated. 

Let's move on.
This is my second week following a diet from "Curves".  I have to consume way too much protein for my taste but I still get my yummy carbs.  I just don't know what I would do if I couldn't have my fruit!  I was craving something sweet today and also in the mood for some baking, but, and this is a biggie, it had to remain low in carbs.  So ultimate brownies is out the window but surely there had to be another option.  I quick search in allrecipes and I found some delightful recipes for meringues and chose this one called " Authentic French Meringues," by RANDIVH.  Browsing through the comments I made some of my own adaptations to the recipe. 

One thing I forgot about making a meringue is that it comes out best on non-humid days... guess what its doing right now?? Yep, its raining.  It took 29 minutes for my egg whites to reach the stiff peak stage and silly me decided today would be the day to whip out the hand mixer.  It also took extra time in the oven to get the meringue to be fully set.  In the end, while they turned out to be fabulous in texture, I found this recipe to be nothing more than tasting of confectioner's sugar.  I will try another recipe in the future using regular granulated sugar. 

Authentic French Meringues
                adapted by Vivian Thiele

4 egg whites   (I had about 1/2 a cup using large eggs)
1/4 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
1 1/4 Confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla.


1.Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F (95 degrees C). Place the oven racks up to the highest possible position.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2.In a glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy using an electric mixer. Sprinkle in sugar a little at a time, while continuing to whip at medium speed. Add cream of tartar and vanilla.  When the mixture becomes stiff and shiny like satin, stop mixing, and transfer the mixture out onto the lined baking sheet by dropping spoonfuls (use a metal spoon only, not plastic!) or you may pipe the mixture onto the parchment paper.

3. Reduce oven temperature to 185 Degrees F and bake for 3 hours without opening the oven to check on them.  After the 3 hours, check to see if  the meringues are dry, and can easily be removed from the pan. If not, place them back in the oven for additional drying time.  Allow cookies to cool completely before storing in an airtight container at room temperature.

Here is what my stiff peaks looked like.  It took me almost thirty minutes to get them to peak because of the humidity! Print Friendly and PDF

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