Perfect meringues

Video guide to making meringues

Perfect meringues and cream for afternoon tea

Afternoon teas are all the rage so why don’t you make some lovely meringues and cream? Just pop them in pretty little paper cake cases, pile them on a plate or even on a cake stand, little bit of fresh fruit and you’ve got a mouth-watering afternoon tea.

How to make a start on your meringue mixture

I’m going to make a 2 egg meringue mixture. So first of all set your eggs. And it’s a good idea to separate them into individual bowls, whites in one, yolks in the other, so that you don’t waste a whole egg.

I’m going to use a balloon whisk because I find that the best whisk to use. You can of course use an electric whisk, and if you use an electric whisk, start slowly and build up gradually. Because what you’re doing is you’re causing all the protein in the egg white to form strands and make a sort of mesh of protein that traps all the air. So start slowly.

So I’m almost there. And you know when the egg white is the right texture when it stands in a lovely stiff peak and it doesn’t slide around in the bowl. You should be able to turn the bowl upside down and it won’t come out.

Adding sugar to your meringue mix

Now I’ve got 50g of caster sugar for every egg white. So for 2 egg whites, 100g of caster sugar. And add the caster sugar about a tablespoon at a time.

And can you see how that is really holding its shape. That’s what you want. It’s holding its shape; you could pipe that if you want to. I’m going to fold in the last couple of tablespoons of caster sugar using a large metal spoon.

How to bake meringues to perfection

Now a good tip is to just secure you r paper with a little dot of meringue on each corner. About 12 small to medium meringues or if you want to make them really big and generous you’ll get about 6 out of it.

And they bake at 100 degrees in a fan oven for about an hour and then I like to turn the oven off and leave them in there to cool. And they should be just a very delicate pale, pale golden and they’re cooked.

These are quite in between size so I’ve got 8 here. You can make them whatever size you like of course.

Serving and storing your meringues

There we are. With a little bit of cream or you can use crème fraiche. You can crush meringue and add it to strawberries and cream to make Eaton mess. Of course you can make meringue nests. But I’m just going to sandwich them with a little bit of whipped cream and pop them in a pastry cake case.

Once they’re filled you really need to eat them within a couple of hours but if you don’t fill them meringues will keep in a cake tin for about 2 weeks. Enjoy.

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