I am a really big fan of meringues. They are sweet, crunchy, and light; after eating a few meringues you don’t get that heavy feeling of eating too much fat. After all, they are simply egg whites and sugar. Such a simple recipe really lends itself to variation. You can make chocolate (like these ones), lemon, or even candy cane meringues. All you need to do is whisk up the egg whites and sugar and then fold in whatever flavour you fancy. Just avoid adding too much fat to the mix as grease takes the air out of the egg whites.
Most chocolate meringues are made by making a meringue base and then folding in melted chocolate. Although that method yields good results, I prefer whisking in coco powder in with the sugar. By avoiding the cream and fat in the chocolate, you get a lighter, healthier, and cheaper meringue. If you feel like the meringues aren’t quite chocolatey enough for you, you can always whip up a quick coco based chocolate sauce to dip them in. Deevineee.
I usually make meringues when I have a surplus of egg whites after making something like lemon curd or custard, but these light, crunchy chocolate drops have become so popular that I have started to have the opposite problem: right now, I have two lonely egg yolks wrapped in my fridge waiting for a recipe to use them up. Try this recipe out, it’s really simple, and the results are a great way to get a not-so-bad-for-you chocolate fix.
- 3 egg whites
- 1/3 cup icing sugar
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 4 tbsp coco powder
- Preheat your oven to 250F (120C).
- Line two baking trays with parchment paper. Meringues stick to both waxed and greaseproof paper.
- Sift together the sugars and coco powder.
- Separate the eggs setting the yolks aside. I cover the yolks in plastic wrap and use a permanent marker to write the number of yolks onto the plastic. That way I know how many yolks I have for a future batch of lemon curd or custard.
- Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until stiff peaks form.
- Beat in the sugar and coco mixture tablespoon by tablespoon until stiff peaks form. At this point, you should have a lovely, glossy meringue.
- Stick the parchment paper down to the baking tray with little blobs of meringue. I usually use the bits on the side of the bowl that haven’t mixed in properly.
- Spoon tablespoon sized blobs of meringue onto the parchment paper spaced by an inch or so. You could transfer the meringue into a piping bag and pipe circles, but I like the rustic spooned meringues.
- Bake the meringues for 1 hour 30 minutes.
- Turn the oven off, but leave the meringues to cool completely in the oven.
- Serve with some chocolate sauce or lemon curd. Store leftovers (if there are any) in an airtight container.